Redland City Council plans to make city more age-friendly

AGE-FRIENDLY: The islands need to be a focus for improvements in aged care, Cr Mark Edwards says. Photo: AAP
AGE-FRIENDLY: The islands need to be a focus for improvements in aged care, Cr Mark Edwards says. Photo: AAP

NEARLY one fifth of Redlanders are older than 65, and council is set to release a draft plan to make the city more age-friendly.

The Age-friendly Action Plan is set to be released for public for consultation later this month after nearly three years of work.

The plan will guide council policies, services and infrastructure in a bid to create better environments for the Redlands' ageing population.

In the Redlands, 18 per cent of residents are older than 65, with Coochiemudlo Island having the most seniors by percentage of its population.

The Southern Moreton Bay Islands were next, followed by Cleveland and Victoria Point.

According to a 2018 survey, the top priorities for Redlands seniors were improving public transport, social isolation and cost of living pressures.

The plan outlines key actions in areas including outdoor spaces and buildings, transport, housing, social activities, social inclusion, employment and health services.

It includes initiatives like exploring community transport options, improving seating, making its services more dementia-friendly and developing activities to prevent social isolation.

Division 10 Cr Paul Bishop said it lined up with the World Health Organisation's Age-friendly Cities project, but he would like to see the plan extended to consider the interests of young people and how they could collaborate with seniors.

"I would find it interesting if we were to...(look at) convening some kind of age-friendly reference group," he said.

Division 5 Cr Mark Edwards said there needed to be extra consideration for the large percentage of island residents who were seniors.

"They're faced with a lot of additional challenges which aren't seen on the mainland," he said.

"There are lots of services to support older residents but when you look further into it, they don't extend to the islands.

"They might in principle but there's nobody actually on the ground."

A key part of the plan is to work with the state government to help SMBI residents age in place.

"There's no retirement homes or facilities for these people," Cr Edwards said.

"Maybe (council has) got a role in bringing together a steering committee (for) all levels of government for them to see what opportunitiess are available to provide services that aren't being provided, so residents ageing on the islands are able to stay there when they aren't able to take care of themselves."

There were calls for an aged care facility on the islands last year, with some residents having to move hours away from their homes and families to get appropriate aged care.

Mayor Karen Williams said community consultation was an opportunity for SMBI residents to respond to the draft plan.

"It's not the ideal retirement spot as it might appear - you really need to think it through," she said.