Push to give ageism the boot
The town of Pingelly has kicked off its Give Ageism the Boot campaign, championed by former mental health minister Helen Morton with a launch at the award-winning Pingelly Recreation and Cultural Centre.
Nationals WA leader Mia Davies and Labor MLC Darren West attended the launch to show support for ending ageism in regional communities.
“The campaign will go all year, and the community is getting on board with doing a whole raft of events to get people to understand what ageism is, and why we need to end it in Pingelly,” Ms Morton said.
“We want to make Pingelly the sort of place where older people’s lives are enriched by living here.”
Behind the fun of the launch is a message about the individual, social and economic benefits of ending ageism.
The campaign is a precursor to a wider project called Staying in Place, which aims to empower people to continue living at home in their rural communities as they get older.
Ms Morton said people living in rural areas invested huge amounts of time, energy, money and emotional input into their communities to make sure they thrived.
“Because they put their heart and soul into this place, they want to stay in the community and not have to leave just because they can’t get the sorts of services they may need when they get older,” she said. “To suddenly get told they can’t get that support, that’s absolute rot.
“We can build the local community’s capability to ensure people don’t have to leave the town when they get older.”
She said the culture around stereotyping and discriminating against older people needed to change — and she hoped the Give Ageism the Boot campaign would spark that change.
The University of WA will also be conducting research on the success of the Pingelly campaign.
Get the latest news from thewest.com.au in your inbox.
Sign up for our emails