Seniors Roundtable Terms of Reference

BACKGROUND

In October 2012, the City of Ottawa adopted a comprehensive Older Adult Plan (OAP) which presents a coordinated approach to addressing the needs of older residents of Ottawa.  The Plan introduces a long-term vision of a community that values, empowers, and supports older persons and their quality of life. The Plan presents 74 concrete actions that will be implemented in the shorter-term (2012-2014) towards the achievement of this vision.   The Older Adult Plan represents a strategic initiative within the Term of Council Strategic Plan (2011-2014).

The actions included in the Plan are organized under eight key strategic areas:  Outdoor Spaces and City Buildings; Transportation; Housing; Communication and Information; Social, Recreational, and Cultural Participation; Civic Participation and Volunteering; Community Supports and Health Services; and Respect and Social Inclusion.  Responsibility for implementation of actions in the Older Adult Action Plan rests with each City Department that has been identified as a “lead” in the Plan; however each City department will play a role in supporting the Plan and its implementation over time. 

MANDATE OF THE SENIORS ROUNDTABLE

The mandate of the Seniors Roundtable is to provide feed-back to City staff on the implementation of the City of Ottawa Older Adult Plan (OAP).  The Seniors Roundtable will also be the City’s primary mechanism for engaging residents on issues affecting older adults.

VISION AND VALUES

The Seniors Roundtable will work within and respect the long-term vision and stated core values of the Older Adult Plan.

Vision:  Ottawa is an age-friendly and caring community that values the contributions of older adults, offers a broad range of opportunities for active living, and provides supports that are responsive to the diverse needs and choices of older adults. 

Values:

  •          A recognition that older adults are contributors to our community and that all – regardless of cultural and religious background, language, sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression, abilities, financial situation, or geographic location – must be respected and included.
  •     A belief that older adults must have access to services that are people-centred, accessible, affordable, equitable, and appropriate to individual needs and abilities. 
  •     A belief that vulnerable older adults must be supported and protected.  
  •     A recognition that the majority of older adults prefer to age in place, in their familiar neighbourhood.
  •     A belief that older adults must be involved in deciding priorities, shaping actions and bringing about change.
  •     An awareness that age-friendly environments and communities benefit all age groups.

RESPONSIBILITIES OF MEMBERS

The members of the Seniors Roundtable shall be responsible to:

  • Receive progress reports and provide comments on the status of the implementation of the actions contained in the Older Adult Plan;
  • Act as a forum for City of Ottawa staff to seek input related to emerging issues of concern to older adults, as well as corporate programs, services or infrastructure.

MEMBERSHIP

The Seniors Roundtable shall be comprised of a maximum of 15 City of Ottawa residents.  These individuals shall be:

  • Residents of Ottawa who are 50 years of age or older;
  • Residents who reflect the City’s diverse population (the City of Ottawa Equity and Inclusion Lens will be applied to assist in inviting a diverse membership);
  • One (1) City Councillor in a liaison capacity.

The Seniors Roundtable will be chaired by City of Ottawa staff.   The term of membership will be for two years, beginning in January 2013 and ending in December 2014. 

The Mayor of Ottawa will extend invitations to community agencies serving older adults to identify older adults to participate on the Seniors Roundtable, as representatives of those agencies.  The Community and Social Services Department will make a final determination of membership in consultation with the Mayor’s Office. 

OTHER CITY STAFF RESOURCES

The Community and Social Services Department will act as the Roundtable’s Secretariat and provide support to the Roundtable (i.e. provide OAP status updates, organize meetings, prepare meeting materials, bilingual minutes, etc).

Representatives from key City departments (e.g. Ottawa Public Health; Ottawa Public Library; Public Works; Community and Social Services Department; Parks, Recreation & Cultural Services; Transit Services; Emergency and Protective Services; Service Ottawa, Corporate Communications) may also be asked to attend meetings to provide updates and information in support of the Roundtable, as required.

DECISION MAKING AND ACCOUNTABILITY

Decision-making at Roundtable meetings will be achieved through consensus.  In the event that consensus is not achieved, the Roundtable will use a vote with a majority rule. 

Formal monitoring of the implementation progress of the OAP will be done by Departmental staff and reported to senior management and City Council at regular intervals by the Community and Social Services Department (CSSD).  Feedback received from the Roundtable will be considered for this reporting.

The Terms of Reference for the Roundtable will be reviewed at the end of each term. 

MEETING STRUCTURE

The Seniors Roundtable will meet four times a year.  Sub-groups (on-going or ad hoc) may be created to work on specific issues between meetings.

Communications, such as updates on follow- up actions, will be shared between meetings via e-mail.

All meetings will take place at Ottawa City Hall, 110 Laurier Avenue West.

Participants will be invited to communicate in either English or French.