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Jan 28, 2022

Many Elderly Have Lost Income Generating Activities and Personal Mobility during Pandemic

Ix-Chel Poot

Violence against the elderly is not the only issue facing them, especially during these difficult times. During a recent interview for News Five’s COVID Chronicles series, Executive Director at the National Council on Aging, Ix-Chel Poot, outlined some of the challenges older persons are facing. These include loss of income and immobility due to limited physical activity.


Ix-Chel Poot, Executive Director, National Council on Aging

“What we have been trying to do, and what we have been called to do a lot more often is capacity building session with families, families who have become caregivers of elderly person where before they were not able to or they were not the main caregiver, but because of the change in situation with COVID. What we find is that as older people became less active, they lost a lot of their independence in mobility and they had to be absorbed into families. So that capacity building session with families is one thing. We have also looked at how we can support meals-on-wheels programs and also pantry programs for older persons, locating people who are able to make donations to existing programs that are going to assist older people. Food security is a big issue in our country. When you look at how the business world collapsed around the world, there were many older people who were involved in very micro-enterprise, little mom and pops shop. They sold ideals, cokes or something very small at home. Those things have collapsed. There were older people who may have run taxis but had a bout with COVID and are no longer able to do it. So, they are not generating any income. Older women who may have been making bread and bun to sell, and then there were nobody to buy their bread and bun. So, what they were doing to supplement no longer exist. So really, how do we ensure that these people have access to food, have access to programs, have access to social support, and also recognizing that all the social programs for older people folded during COVID.”

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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