Free event wants you to help make Honolulu more age-friendly

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Would you consider Honolulu a city that’s easy and accessible for elderly? A group of elder advocates is determined to improve that.

John Goody knows first-hand the dangers on Oahu roads for bicyclists. A car hit him on his recent bike ride, leaving him with bruises and broken ribs. His helmet, he says, saved his life.

“I don’t consider it an accident. Somebody was inattentive. There was a crash, completely preventable,” he said.

This is just one of the many issues Oahu residents, especially the elderly, face on this island.

“The attitude of car drivers, you can’t build your way out of inattentive driving and speeding through neighborhoods. The whole idea of traffic calming and having the attitude among drivers of sharing the roadway,” Goody said.

It’s one of several issues that the Honolulu Mayor’s Office, AARP Hawaii and the World Health Organization are analyzing in an effort called The Age-Friendly City Initiative. The goal is to improve life in Honolulu, especially for aging citizens.

Those topics include:

  • Outdoor spaces and buildings
  • Transportation
  • Housing
  • Communication and social involvement
  • Civic participation and employment
  • Community support and health services

“These communities meet standards to make the community and life there better for elderly. The community and AARP as part of this network, facilitate improvement,” Goody said.

The final action plan will be submitted to the World Health Organization by next summer for approval. Honolulu will then have three years to make the changes.

To learn more about this plan and provide feedback, the public is invited to attend a free Living Age Friendly: Kupuna to Keiki event this Saturday, Feb. 7, 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. at the Japanese Cultural Center. Continental breakfast will be served.

RSVP online or call (toll-free) 1-877-926-8300. Click here for more information.

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