COVID-19 social distancing, and the threat of the re-emergence of the virus, has created uncertainty and fear for seniors.
Canberra's seniors remain confused about their lifestyles from a health perspective and a lack of freedom. This is due to a lack of specific advice from authorities on resuming "normal" living.
The advice to the over 70s is to continue to self-isolate, not travel, not mix, not visit friends, family, and relatives, and do not use public transport.
Other age groups are "allowed" to expand their activities and enjoy their resumed sense of freedom. Not so for the over 70s.
Many have already adopted an intense form of social isolation for three months. Social contact is vital. They miss opportunities to connect with family and friends.
With health issues downgraded for most of the population, seniors feel they are further affected by reduced income and threats to their capacity to afford their needs.
Many Canberra senior citizens face additional confusion as service and funding constraints are applied. Business, sport and entertainment will receive priority with senior's sectors neglected during the early phases of the recovery.
What is wanted now is recognition of the social connection needs of seniors and advice on how to resume activities without compromising their health. The current message is that seniors are still highly vulnerable to outbreaks. Their risk tolerance is extremely low. They are minimising their social activities and are reluctant to go outdoors.
It is about time the CMO issued helpful advice for this sector. Many feel forgotten.
Ewan Brown, president,
Council on the Ageing, ACT
It's not just academic
My daughter is in year 11. She is a state champion public speaker and debater. She is currently at a private school in Sydney and intends to study an Arts Degree at ANU
I'm in the process of purchasing an apartment in Civic for her to live in to allow her to follow her passion.
With the decision by the federal government to double the fees for arts subjects, I am, based on cost, encouraging her not to study in Australia.
The decision to make agricultural degrees, of which I have two, made cheaper than arts degrees in appalling. My daughter in high school already makes more money from the arts than I do as a professional agriculturalist.Greg Adamson, Griffith
I believe she will get a better education at a well-known institution overseas for a lower cost.
The decision by the government to make agricultural degrees, of which I have two, cheaper than arts degrees is appalling. My daughter in high school already makes more money from the arts than I do as a professional agriculturalist.
Greg Adamson, Griffith
Ita on the rampage
So, Ita Buttrose has written a stern letter to Scott Morrison about the ABC. Well it's good to know there is a chairperson of that organisation.
But, so that the public can make a sounder judgment as to the funding of the ABC, why can't we see, like any other publicly funded organisation, what the top executives and staff are being paid?
Their claim to independence editorially is fine, but not for the finance side. There is plenty of room for savings. A good example is The Drum which has become an hour-long indulgence for the presenters and so many repeat contributors.
Adam Spencer, in the summer slot, has been the only fair minded presenter. Let us see where our money is going at the ABC.
Eric Hodge, Pearce
How dare they...
For some time recently I have been incensed by criticisms of governance in Canberra (in the letters pages) by people from NSW. Too often we are bagged by people from Sutton, Queanbeyan, Jerrabomberra, Murrumbateman and Yass.
Some have the temerity to work here and take their salaries and spend them in NSW.
On Monday (June 29) Allan Gibson from Cherrybrook, a part of outer-Sydney, took a swipe at our chief minister.
I'm not interested in what people outside the ACT think of us. Nor do I take notice of their advice. Folks here don't lecture those unfortunate souls in NSW.
John Hargreaves, Wanniassa
Shame ACT, shame
What wonderful news that Australia will be holding the 2023 finals in the women's football (soccer) World Cup! And what a disgrace Canberra (meaning our ACT government) withdrew itself from the bid. Why does women's sport still get so little support in supposedly progressive Canberra? A major event, and no matches in the nation's capital. A pity that there's no time-travel to right this small-minded decision.
Penelope Cottier, O'Connor
Back the cup
Andrew Barr's reported view that $1 million is too high for a women's World Cup game should be seen in context.
The context includes the roughly $1 million per metre that Stage 1 of the light rail has cost (with another $2 billion or so to be spent on Stage 2), the $5 billion or so in revenue the government raises annually, and the millions of dollars in subsidies paid by the ACT government to men's professional sports.
I suggest voters, and women in particular, consider where the current government's priorities lie when they vote at the ACT election on October 17.
Bruce Paine, Red Hill
How short-sighted of our progressive ACT government to "decline" to host any 2023 women's World Cup matches. The returns in showcasing Canberra to the world would surely outweigh any cost. It seems that a million dollars or so is too much, but that throwing a billion on further extending the light rail to Commonwealth Park (Where? Why?) makes more economic sense to the financial gurus currently running our budget into the proverbial black hole.
Les Bienkiewicz, Kingston
We can't fail to recognise a practical use for parliamentarians such as Matt Canavan, Tim Wilson and Barnaby Joyce.
Their purely hard-ideological, experts-countering opinions, even on the obscure issue of vaping and nicotine imports, mark them out as the perfect shortcuts to good policy.
All you have to do is to listen carefully to any of their opinions and take a 180-degree turn.
We need them in Parliament, with a public voice, if only for this.
Alex Mattea, Sydney, NSW
Why so much for the AWM?
AWM director Matt Anderson (Letters, June 29) justifies the proposed extension to the Australian War Memorial in economic terms - x dollars invested produces y dollars return and z new jobs.
But his argument could apply just as logically to investment in the other national collecting institutions, the CSIRO, the ABC et al.
The point is: why so much largesse to the memorial alone, while the others are squeezed ever tighter by lazy "efficiency dividends"? And if the memorial is indeed subject to these strictures too, how will it have enough staff or funds to operate the extension when it is finished?
For context, everyone can read the 70-odd current submissions to the Public Works Committee, many of which highlight the lack of evidence and transparency driving what increasingly resembles a vanity project. Above all other institutions, the memorial should behave in accordance with the sacrifice for democratic principles which it exists to commemorate.
Ray Edmondson, Kambah
Not Labor's fault
Your editorial on Labor and climate change (canberratimes.com.au, June 25) was disappointing in that you seemingly blamed Labor for the political impasse on this existential issue. It was the Rudd-Gillard-Rudd Labor governments that had the best scheme possible with its price on carbon which was bringing emissions down. It was the Coalition that abolished this mechanism seven years ago. The Coalition's emissions reduction target is extremely weak. Their taxpayer funded mechanisms will do little.
Rod Holesgrove, Crace
The unsocial media
Twitter seems to exist primarily for the purpose of generating mobs composed of individuals hungry for blood and desiring to bask in the joy of risk-free reputation destruction, revenge and self-righteousness.
This situation leads to lack of standards and integrity, and mainly without any research into the comments made.
Many messages are of appalling idiocy, detestable, envy and embarrassing to behold.
Bruce Hambour, North Haven, SA
Ghosts in the machine
Having read some of the recent letters in defence of the ABC I fear you may be being spammed by a logarithm. Many would fail to pass the Turing test,
M Moore, Bonython
TO THE POINT
CALL THE DOCTOR
While not unsympathetic to the idea of a maternity facility at the Yass hospital, I wonder why the local doctors don't, or won't, deliver babies. Why would gynecologists permanently work in Yass? How would this be managed? Can we have the facts please?
Greg Cornwell, Yarralumla
$6 million to see the best international woman's football (soccer) teams in the world. $12m for one tram station. How big a world-wide TV audience would Mr Barr have to see him proclaim "this tram station is open"? About 56,000 children and adults play the beautiful game in Canberra. Shame. Barr, humbug.
John Madelly Snr, Melba
IT'S A MYSTERY
Why do the photos of the celebration of getting the women's soccer world cup feature so many men?
There should be more women involved in running women's sports, and in sports in general.
Dennis Fitzgerald, Box Hill, Vic
RON WAS RIGHT
Ronald Reagan spoke true words in jest when he defined a recession as "when your neighbour loses his job" and a depression "when you lose your job as well".
M. F. Horton, Adelaide, SA
WELL SAID MARIA
Brilliantly expressed Maria Greene (Letters, June 29). The ACT government skewered in four short sentences.
Peter Gunther, Mawson
Two Victorians and a Canberran walk into a supermarket. One Victorian says to the other "there are 70 new cases of COVID-19 in our home state".
The Canberran buys 30 packs of toilet paper. Get it? No? I don't either.
John Howarth, Weston
CIVILISATION PAPER THIN
Is it not obvious Gordon Fyfe? (Stupidity Incarnate, Letters, June 29) that our thin veneer of civilization is only two ply thick.
Ronald Elliott, Sandringham, Vic
Kirsten Lawson makes some interesting comparisons between coronavirus deaths in Australia and South Korea ("The puzzle over Australia's low coronavirus death rates", canberratimes.com.au, June 29) but what about Taiwan.
It has a similar population to Australia but has only recorded seven deaths.
John Coochey, Chisholm
What are the chances Virgin will still be around in four years rather than stripped of all its assets by the private equity company.
This seems to be the normal result when private equity companies from the US buy struggling Aussie businesses. It's bare bones, no assets, and bust again.
Dave Roberts, Belconnen
FIRE SMOKE HAZARD
It is an oxymoron to even imply toxins have a safe level ("Study on long-term impacts of bushfire smoke", June 26, p18).
Lethality is just one easily determined, crude measure of toxicity.
Insidious bushfire effects represent individualised increased health costs, reduced quality of life and, potentially, an abbreviated life span.
Albert M. White, Queanbeyan, NSW
Email: email@example.com. Send from the message field, not as an attachment. Fax: 6280 2282. Mail: Letters to the Editor, The Canberra Times, PO Box 7155, Canberra Mail Centre, ACT 2610.
Keep your letter to 250 or fewer words. References to The Canberra Times reports should include date and page number. Letters may be edited. Provide phone number and full home address (suburb only published).
To send a letter via the online form, click or touch here.