What is an Age-friendly municipality (AFM)?
It is a municipality that:
- adapts its policies, services and buildings to better serve seniors;
- helps seniors remain active for as long as possible;
- prevents discrimination against seniors; and
- promotes consultation with and participation by seniors at every level.
What steps will be taken?
By becoming an AFM, Gatineau commits to introduce a series of measures adapted to the needs of seniors.
Offer an appropriate, accessible and safe living environment
- Identify, by sector, the municipal community centre most frequently used by seniors, determine any access issues, and make the necessary improvements.
- Inform owners of public businesses (clinics, shopping centres, etc.) about the special access needs of seniors.
- Take into consideration the needs of seniors when setting up rest areas.
- Make sure that sidewalks are readily accessible to people with reduced mobility in areas most frequently used by seniors.
- Identify street corners where seniors do not have time to cross safely, and make the necessary adjustments where applicable.
- Integrate a component on seniors in public awareness campaigns on road safety.
- Mandate an organization to prepare an inventory of adapted and accessible housing for seniors in Gatineau.
- Pursue the construction of affordable housing for seniors under the AccèsLogis Québec program.
- Help the Société de transport de l'Outaouais (STO) identify the public transportation needs of seniors.
- Work with the STO, partners and local organizations to set public transportation objectives for seniors.
Propose specific activities
- Review the cultural, sports and outdoors activities available to seniors.
- Promote the development of activities where different generations can share and talk to one another.
- Offer event organizers ideas for activities for seniors that they could integrate into their programs.
- Provide adapted equipment and materials for the entertainment of seniors.
- Adapt rates to enable low-income seniors to sign up for municipal activities.
- Promote the Accès Gatineau card and its benefits for seniors.
- Ensure access to registrations.
- Carry out a satisfaction survey among seniors to determine whether the steps that have been taken meet their needs.
- Conduct an awareness campaign on ageism (age discrimination).
- Ensure that information documents created for seniors are clearly legible and easy to understand.
- Adapt communication tools (brochures, pamphlets, ads, etc.) as applicable.
In 2031, nearly one out of four Gatineau residents will be 65 years of age or older.
The proportion of seniors in Gatineau is going to double within the next 20 years.
This is a significant change, and Gatineau wants to start doing everything necessary by adapting its policies and services in order to prepare for this new reality.
Gatineau is proud to be officially recognized as an Age-friendly municipality (AFM).
What did it take for Gatineau to be recognized as an Age-friendly municipality?
The welfare of seniors is important in Gatineau. Several public consultations helped lay the groundwork for AFM recognition.
Gatineau has been assured of the cooperation of local partners by setting up a special committee to guide it in its work. This committee prepared an inventory of the services provided, and a needs analysis based on the views of seniors.
This committee included:
- municipal representatives
- community organizations for seniors
- the Centre de santé et de services sociaux (CSSS) de Gatineau
- the Centre de santé et de services sociaux (CSSS) de Papineau
- a representative of the residents
Commitment, determination and dedication by close to 600 people helped make Gatineau an AFM.