Advocates Advocating Christine Thelker © 2020 Dementia For This I Am Grateful Living well with Dementia

Walking a Fine Line

I wonder if the buzz in the last couple years around “Dementia Friendly Communities “, is actually walking a fine line between doing good and doing harm. For years we have been fighting for the human rights of those living with Dementia to be recognized, for segregation to stop, yes it stills happens every locked Dementia unit in long term care homes is against the rights of those living with dementia and it is segregation at its worst. It’s my opinion that it’s the most cost effect measure to say they are looking after those with dementia and that’s it’s for their own safety, without having to actually take the time and put the resources in place to provide and promote quality of life. So it’s actually about money nothing but.
So I am working in my community on this idea of a dementia friendly community although I keep stressing it should be called an “all inclusive community”, not a dementia friendly which again is segregation from other groups with our communities. We don’t make MS friendly communities, Brain Injury friendly communities, Stroke friendly communities, so in fact are we doing more harm?, undoing so much work to stop segregation of people with dementia, by the simple choice of language. If you make an all inclusive community, it would encompass, the elderly, those with all physical and cognitive disabilities, including dementia.
In order to ensure they are given grants and funds they must show they are creating dementia friendly communities, that doesn’t mean that it has to go so far as to label it that way within the community. You can create education for business, groups within the community, and the general public that can truly creat a community that can embrace all who live there without the actual label.
We need to ensure because we get excited “that something” is finally being done for those with dementia that we don’t allow that fine line to be crossed. There is lots of work being done around “dementia friendly communities “ around the globe, I just hope there is enough input and voices of those with dementia who can and will ensure it doesn’t become another form of segregation.

By WWW.Chrissy's

I am an advocate for people with dementia in Canada and globally, having been diagnosed with younger onset dementia myself a few years ago.

2 replies on “Walking a Fine Line”

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