Tyranny of distance a worry for seniors
WITH senior’s week in full swing, the Gazette spoke with Marjorie Norris, a prominent Mossman local and President of Mossman District Nursing Home Incorporated about challenges facing aged residents in the shire.
According to Ms Norris, Douglas Shire is a good place to retire to as long as you are in good health.
She explained that this wasn’t due to a lack of services, but the distances involved in travelling across the shire.
“As you age and you live a distance from town you are always concerned that you will lose your driver’s licence, and that’s a big impediment to living in country areas, so as you age you think about moving into town, and that’s a huge consideration.
“We don’t live in an area where we have access to trains and buses and taxis are expensive, so it becomes quite a problem when that happens and your health fails.
“As we age if we’re living outside of the inner town areas then we do have problems,” she said.
Although the distances are a drawback, Ms Norris said that the beauty of the area made living in Douglas Shire very attractive for retirees.
“We live in a beautiful area with a beautiful climate -we have access to so many beautiful places be it the rivers, the beach or the rainforest – and the towns.
“Most of us are very comfortable doing the hours travel to Cairns and coming home again – it’s a nice outing for us providing we don’t have a lot of things to do in Cairns.”
Ms Norris said that a lot of aged residents had moved to the shire to be with their youn- ger families.
“What’ve we’ve noticed happening is you get young ones coming here to work and stay here, and then their parents come here to retire.
“Older families move in to be with their younger familiesthey love the environment and the geography.”