Seniors ask, 'Would you do this to your parents?'
Hundreds of Langley seniors banded together at a public forum Saturday, in hopes of saving a program they say enables them to continue living full lives.
The Langley Senior Recreation and Resource Centre offers services like volunteer driving, shopping and social activities for vulnerable seniors - but not for long. The Fraser Health Authority has axed funding for these and other regional seniors programs as a cost cutting measure.
But these seniors aren't giving them up without a fight.
About 600 people crammed into the senior centre Saturday to voice their dismay at the planned service cuts.
"These are your parents," one senior charged. "Would you do this to your parents?"
"You'll never get that Liberal government back in this damned province if you do this," said another.
The centre's Sharon Birnie told CTV News that the cost associated with the volunteer-run programs is well worth the benefits seniors receive.
"These are the preventable services that keep people out of the acute care beds," Birnie said. "That's where the frail elders end up if they do not have community connections, support, soft services around them."
Langley's two civic governments say they'll look into gap funding to keep these services going - but until a permanent reprieve is found, the seniors aren't holding their breath.
For now, they say they'll just keep fighting, hoping someone in government recognizes the value they find in these services - not just in dollars and cents, but in the quality of life it provides for hundreds of elder British Columbians.
With a report from CTV British Columbia's Stephen Smart