STAWELL'S Eventide Homes has joined thousands of other nursing homes around the country who have called for urgent reform into aged care in Australia to help improve the care for our wisest citizens.
The Australian Aged Care Collaboration (AACC) have launched the 'It's Time to Care About Aged Care' campaign which is calling for people to sign a petition to encourage the national Parliament to address the sector's many challenges.
Eventide Homes chief executive officer Sue Blakey urged Stawell residents to sign the petition and help bring the issue to national attention.
"We want everyone in Australia to sign it, we are all going to be old one day and if we have some aged care reform now then it will be good for all of us to live in it if we ever need it," she said.
"I have been here over 20 years and I have seen about 20 reports and all they have done is make minor tweaks, so with this Royal Commission it gives the opportunity for reform."
The petition is also linked with recommendations of the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety which will release their findings later this month, giving parliament the opportunity to step up and make much needed changes.
"My most important aspect of the reform would be to have staff paid appropriate wages to look after our residents with dignity and give them the support we actually need," Ms Blakey said.
"This will help entice people to work and aged care and make a career out of it and wages at PCW (personal care workers) level are appalling.
"This petition is just trying to get aged care on the political agenda, because at the moment people don't see it as an important voting issue.
"The end goal is reform aged care so elderly people can live with dignity and respect and be supported."
More than 4.1 million Australians, or almost 16 per cent of the population, are currently aged over 65. By 2057, that will rise to 8.8 million, or 22 per cent of the population, and by 2097 it will reach 12.8 million people, or one in four Australians.
The AACC said as a result of this increasing need for aged care, under-resourced homes have become more common, as they struggle to maintain standards and staffing, whilst fighting to keep their doors open.
To sign the petition visit the AACC website.
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