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Health and Community Services
June 4, 2012

The following statement was given today in the House of Assembly by the Honourable Susan Sullivan, Minister of Health and Community Services and Minister Responsible for Aging and Seniors:

Provincial Government Recognizes Seniors Month

Mr. Speaker, I rise in this Honourable House today to recognize June as Seniors Month. This is an opportunity for the Provincial Government to acknowledge the lifelong contribution that seniors make to their communities and the province.

Mr. Speaker, it is important that older people are supported in their ability to remain independent and that efforts are made to improve their financial well-being and overall quality of life. With that in mind, Budget 2012 allocated $3.7 million to provide individuals aged 65 years and over, a 35 per cent reduction on driver’s licence and vehicle registration fees, and other licences and fees for such things as hunting, fishing, cutting wood and camping.

This complements the goals of the Provincial Healthy Aging Policy Framework which aims to recognize older persons, celebrate diversity, support communities, encourage health and financial well-being, and support employment, education and research. The framework was established in 2007 to further support and recognize seniors for their valuable contributions.

Mr. Speaker, our government has made significant investments to help enhance and improve the lives of older people throughout our province, including enhancements to the Newfoundland and Labrador Prescription Drug Program, increases to the home heating rebate, an enhanced Newfoundland and Labrador Seniors’ Benefit and significant tax reductions.

Our government is moving forward with its commitment to support seniors who avail of the 65Plus Plan under the Newfoundland and Labrador Provincial Drug Program. Through changes made to this plan, resulting from savings from the new generic drug pricing policy, we have ensured that seniors covered by the 65Plus Plan will pay no more than $6 per prescription.

Mr. Speaker, part of developing an age-friendly province is recognizing and promoting the value and worth of older persons in our province. It is in this spirit that the Provincial Government will present the annual Seniors of Distinction Awards later this month. This awards program recognizes and celebrates the lifelong contributions, achievements and diversity of seniors throughout Newfoundland and Labrador.

Healthy aging is a priority for our government and we will continue to support seniors’ health and well-being throughout Newfoundland and Labrador.

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

2012 06 04             2:05 p.m.

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