‘Village’ not best

SHIRE councillors are just plain wrong if they believe, as they seem to, that mono-social retirement �villages� best serve aged people.

With lifestyles that are more sensible and better general health provision, people today are living much longer healthier and more active lives.

In fact, it appears that for the majority 75 has become the new 60, and for those extra years we wish to continue living contributing lives integrated within all-age communities, not in age and cost-exclusive �village� enclaves, whether �gated� or not.

The priority shortage through poor social planning by many such suburban local authorities who have been party to needless urban sprawl, is for compact nursing aged-care bed facilities distributed and readily accessible throughout the various districts.

Those certainly do not need large sites of eight to 10 hectares or more.

That would have been obvious if this shire was properly staffed for future planning.

That function should always include ongoing professional social research across their communities, rather than as at present relying on politicians to try responding with poorly assessed ad hoc �crisis management� after accumulating need has had to be impressed upon the local authority by people themselves.

Furthermore, the social reality with such �villages� is that the dedicated �bed-space� nursing aged-care units within them, for sound operational cost-effective reasons, are not built initially but have to wait often many years to materialise until the numbers of residents who have a proven need for nursing care bed spaces have accumulated to make them viable.

Even then it is by prior agreements, are exclusive to those village residents and don�t serve the wider community.

PETER FORREST, Kalamunda.