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This episode outlines the connection between human rights and dementia, with particular attention to the impact of COVID-19 on long term care. Mario Gregorio is a dementia activist who is a co-creator of a Canadian Charter of Rights for Canadians with Dementia for the Alzheimer Society of Canada. Laura Tamblyn-Watts of CanAge is a lawyer and leading advocate for older people and Margaret Gillis leads the International Longevity Centre in Ottawa and is working to have Canada adopt the UN Convention on the Rights of Older Persons. Each gives their own advice on what listeners can do to promote human rights for people with dementia.

After living with a dementia diagnosis for almost a decade, Mario became a member of the Alzheimer Society of Canada’s Advisory Group that created the Canadian Charter of Rights for People with Dementia which was released in 2018. It is a concise document intended to de-stigmatize dementia and advocate for the rights of people living with it. He encourages everyone to get a copy of it, which can be found here.

Laura and Margaret clearly and ardently outline the human rights issues surrounding age, dementia and the Covid-19 crisis.
They call on our listeners to speak out to media, political representatives and community organizations to bring these issues to light and keep them at the forefront of our national conversation. They also discuss the need for a comprehensive international human rights convention that focuses on older persons, to combat the “pandemic of ageism”. They propose the establishment of a Covid-19 committee, that contains representation of older people and their caregivers, to advise governments moving forward, as well as a post-pandemic inquiry.

Resources for this episode can be found under the following sections on our resource page:
-Living with Dementia

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