Long-term care rally in Victoria delayed by weather and election call | Kelowna News | iNFOnews

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Long-term care rally in Victoria delayed by weather and election call

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September 22, 2020 - 7:00 PM

A rally in Victoria aimed at pressuring government to ease the restrictions on visits to long-care homes has been delayed by weather and the provincial election call.

“This may end up being a blessing in disguise,” Brenda Brophy, one of the organizers, told iNFOnews.ca.

Severe thunderstorms were forecast for Victoria this Thursday, where the rally was originally scheduled. That did not seem suitable for an event that will include a number of seniors. But the election call also put a dent in hopes of pressuring government to change its policies and allow more family members to visit long term care residents more often.

Brophy has been able to get in to see her 100-year-old mother in a Victoria care home after her mother suffered a number of falls.

She’s also an administrator with the Families for Change - Stories From Longterm Care Facebook group that is organizing the rally.

She’s been dealing with long-term care homes since 2017, and during the year before the pandemic got to know many of the residents of her mother’s ward. She was shocked by the changes she saw in mental and physical health of these residents when she was able to go back in to help her mother.

“I’ve never seen such sudden decline,” she said. “We’re hearing that from most people when they’re talking about their loved ones and the other ones that they see.”

READ MORE: It’s too late for this pandemic isolated long-term care patient but his wife fights on for others

The rally has been rescheduled to 1:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 29 at the St. Ann’s Academy at 835 Humboldt St. in Victoria with a safe-distancing, masked walk to the legislature.

The Raging Grannies will be in attendance and one of the confirmed speakers is Dr. Debra Sheets, an associate professor at the University of Victoria’s School of Nursing with a research focus on gerontology, geriatric nursing, dementia and caregiving.

The delay will also give time to encourage people in other cities to organize their own rallies. One member of the Facebook group plans on walking around that day wearing signs calling for changes in long-term care.

The election call also allows groups like this to try to make reform of the long-term care system an election issue.

Families for Change is a closed Facebook group and can be found here.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Rob Munro or call 250-808-0143 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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