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Housing needs and preferences among senior citizens (West Vancouver) : an exploratory survey of married… MacKinnon, Dolina F. 1957

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HOUSING- NEEDS AMD PREFERENCES AMONG SENIOR CITIZENS (WEST VANCOUVER) An E x p l o r a t o r y Survey of Married and Single Pensioners, L i v i n g i n Various Types of Accommodation, i n West Vancouver, 1 9 5 6 - 7 • by DOLINA P.vMacKINNON and JEROME H. ANGEL Thesis Submitted i n P a r t i a l F u l f i l m e n t of the Requirements f o r the Degree of MASTER OF SOCIAL WORK i n the School of S o c i a l Work Accepted as conforming to the standard required f o r the degree of Master of S o c i a l Work School of 19^7 The U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h S o c i a l Work Columbia - i i i -ABSTRACT Low-rent housing i s only one item i n the "welfare agenda" f o r the aged, .but i t i s of f a i r l y recent r e c o g n i -t i o n compared wi t h boarding homes, i n s t i t u t i o n s , n u r sing care, et c e t e r a . There are many causes of the heavy demand f o r s e l f - c o n t a i n e d accommodation f o r the able-bodied; but greater i n f o r m a t i o n on needs and preferences i s a l s o ess.ential f o r wise planning. The present study i s an e x p l o r a t o r y sampling of the l i v i n g arrangements and needs and preferences of able-bodied pensioners l i v i n g i n v a r i o u s types of accommodation i n West Vancouver, a suburban community i n which a small housing p r o j e c t has r e c e n t l y been b u i l t . For the purpose o f ' t h i s study, the i n d i v i d u a l s surveyed were d i v i d e d i n t o two groups: married couple's., and s i n g l e persons (women only, i n the present Instance). The survey was conducted by i n d i v i d u a l i n t e r v i e w s , and some experimental questionnaires were developed. In the two main groups s t u d i e d — m a r r i e d couples and " s i n g l e " ¥omen--some s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s were found be-tween those who wished to remain i n t h e i r present d w e l l i n g and those who wished to make a change which would be an improvement. The f i r s t group was composed mostly of homeowning couples, and s i n g l e women l i v i n g alone who had been i n the same place f o r a number of years. The group who d i d not f i n d t h e i r present l i v i n g arrangements s a t i s -f a c t o r y was composed mostly of couples were were i n rented accommodation, and s i n g l e women who were l i v i n g with married c h i l d r e n . W i t h i n a l l gr oups there were many va r -i a t i o n s ; but one problem whichras common to a l l groups was i n s u f f i c i e n t f i n a n c i a l resources. Most of those who rented accommodation were paying more than they could a f f o r d f o r r e n t . The homeowners, a f t e r paying taxes, had i n s u f f i c i e n t funds l e f t f o r needed r e p a i r s and upkeep, and sometimes f o r n e c e s s i t i e s . Many older people were l i v i n g apart from married c h i l d -ren, although they wished to l i v e close enough to permit v i s i t i n g . L i kewise, many s i n g l e women who l i v e d w i t h mar-r i e d c h i l d r e n , although t h e i r f a c i l i t i e s were s u p e r i o r to those of s i n g l e women l i v i n g alone, nevertheless derived l e a s t s a t i s f a c t i o n from t h e i r l i v i n g arrangements. A l l of - i v -the o l d e r persons who wished to. move regarded the accom-modation i n the West Vancouver Senior Citizens"! Housing P r o j e c t as h i g h l y desirable-. The main i m p l i c a t i o n s of the study i n c l u d e : the need f o r l o w - r e n t a l housing f o r older people; the p o s s i b i l i t i e s f o r s o c i a l work s e r v i c e s i n planning and to help the older person use the f a c i l i t i e s when a v a i l a b l e ; and the continuous relevance of p u b l i c education and community o r g a n i z a t i o n . In presenting t h i s thesis i n p a r t i a l fulfilment of the requirements fo r an advanced degree at the University of B r i t i s h Columbia, -f agree that the Library s h a l l make i t f r e e l y available f o r reference and study. £. further agree that permission for extensive copying of t h i s thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the Head of my-Department or by h i s representative. It i s understood that copying or publication of t h i s thesis f o r f i n a n c i a l gain s h a l l not be allowed without »y written permission. The University of B r i t i s h Columbia, Vancouver 3, Canada. Date - v -ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS We would l i k e to express our sincere indebtedness to those who have been so thought-f u l and generous i n g i v i n g of t h e i r time and suggestions. I t i s only through t h e i r Invaluable a s s i s t a n c e and continued guidance that we are able to present t h i s study. To Dr. L.C. Marsh of the School of S o c i a l Work f o r h i s enduring encouragement and abiding p a t i e n c e ; to Mr. C.K. Toren of the West Vancouver S o c i a l Service Department f o r h i s k i n d cooperation; and to Mr. G.M. Stewart of the West Vancouver Senior C i t i z e n s ' Housing S o c i e t y do we g r a t e f u l l y record our a p p r e c i a t i o n f o r t h e i r genuine i n t e r e s t , c o n s i d e r a t i o n , and support. - i i -TABLE OF CONTENTS. Page Chapter 1 . Housing and the Senior C i t i z e n Today's senior c i t i z e n s . The West Vancouver community. Welfare aspects of housing. S o c i a l • work and housing. Low-rental housing. Method of the survey 1 Chapter 2. Housing Needs of Older Couples "We'll stay here as long as we can." "We've been i n this house a long time." The co'st of ownership. "Taxes are going up a l l the time." Would they l i k e to l i v e i n the housing project? Conclusions 3 1 Chapter 3- Housing Needs of Older Women Physical accommodation. Housing experience-. Satisfa c t i o n s from accommodation. Budget con-siderations. Senior c i t i z e n s ' housing project. Preferred c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of housing. Conclusions. 54-Chapter l±. Needs and Preferences: A Review Applications f o r the West Vancouver project. Types of situations' and accommodation. D i f f e r -ences of s o c i a l and economic situations'. Some welfare implications f o r senior c i t i z e n s ' housing projects 86 Appendices: A. Regulations of the "Elderly C i t i z e n s ' Housing Aid Act." B. Questionnaire-schedule used to implement the study. C. Questionnaire used at the meeting of the West Vancouver Senior C i t i z e n s ' Club. D. Copy of the l e t t e r sent to West Vancouver S o c i a l Service Department c l i e n t s who were interviewed. E. Bibliography. TABLES IN THE TEXT Table 1. Housing preferences expressed by older women.. 8 1 Table 2. Ages of the applicants who applied f o r residence i n the West Vancouver project 8 8 Table 3 . Number of years l i v e d In West Vancouver by the applicants 8 9 HOUSING. NEEDS AMD PREFERENCES AMONG SENIOR CITIZENS (WEST VANCOUVER) An E x p l o r a t o r y S u r v e y of M a r r i e d and S i n g l e P e n s i o n e r s , L i v i n g i n V a r i o u s Types, of Accommodation, I n West Vancouver, 1956-7. CHAPTER 1 HOUSING AND THE SENIOR C I T I Z E N D u r i n g t h e e a r l y p a r t o f t h i s , c e n t u r y , many h u n d r e d s o f t h o u s a n d s , o f w o r d s were w r i t t e n a b o u t i n f a n t m o r t a l i t y . T o d a y , j u s t as many w o r d s a r e b e i n g p u t f o r t h on t h e s u b j e c t o f o l d a g e . T h e s e two f i e l d s a r e n o t u n r e l a t e d , f o r , as. .a r e s u l t o f t h e l o w e r e d i n f a n t m o r t a l -i t y , t h e numbers o f o l d e r p e o p l e h a v e i n c r e a s e d . B e c a u s e o f s o c i e t y ' s c h a n g i n g p a t t e r n , many p r o b l e m s h a v e d e v e l o p e d I n t h e p a s t f e w d e c a d e s f o r t h e s e o l d e r p e o p l e , and i n a d e m o c r a c y i t i s f i t t i n g t h a t a t t e n t i o n be d i r e c t e d t o w a r d s r e s e a r c h , s t u d y , and u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f t h e p r o b l e m s , i n o r d e r t o r e s t o r e t o d a y ' s s e n i o r c i t i z e n t o a p l a c e o f s e c u r i t y and d i g n i t y . P r o m p t i n g much o f t h e r e c e n t l i t e r a t u r e on t h e aged i s t h e f a c t t h a t so l i t t l e i s known a b o u t them, e s p e c i a l l y a b o u t a b l e - b o d i e d o l d e r p e o p l e and t h e i r l i v i n g a r r a n g e m e n t s . T h e r e i s n e e d f o r more i n f o r m a t i o n . P h y s i -c i a n s a r e s e e k i n g t o g a i n more k n o w l e d g e a b o u t d e g e n e r a -t i v e d i s e a s e s * s o c i o l o g i s t s w i s h t o r e v i e w t h e i r c u l t u r a l p a t t e r n s , and s o c i a l a g e n c i e s w i s h t o o f f e r more a d e q u a t e s e r v i c e s t o t h e o l d e r p e r s o n . A r e c e n t s u r v e y on t h e a g e i n g was u n d e r t a k e n i n New Y o r k t o d e t e r m i n e t h e f u n d a -m e n t a l n e e d s o f t h e o l d e r p e o p l e i n t h e d i s t r i c t s e r v i c e d - 2 -by the Kips B a y - Y o r k v i l l e Health Centre i n New York C i t y . The r e s u l t s of t h i s study have been published by the R u s s e l l Sage Foundation In a book e n t i t l e d , F i v e Hundred  Over Sixty." 1' Although the study was confined to one small geographical area, the problems surveyed are those to be found i n almost any community i n Canada or the United Sta t e s . The authors of the New York study observe t h a t : For some persons, the p e r i o d of agedness has, brought w i t h i t u n p a r a l l e l e d p r e s t i g e , fame, and even f o r -tune. The eld e r statesman, the d i s t i n g u i s h e d pro-f e s s o r emeritus, the e l d e r l y tycoon, are examples. For others, age has meant unprecedented hardship, chronic degenerative i l l n e s s , mental d i s i n t e g r a t i o n , indigency, and i n s t i t u t i o n a l i z a t i o n . In modern times, age-determined e x c l u s i o n from employment, subsistence on p u b l i c f i n a n c i a l support, and residence i n c u s t o d i a l i n s t i t u t i o n s , have been some of the con-comitants of ageing. For the m a j o r i t y , however,who have n e i t h e r fame nor wealth,- on the one hand, nor 'second childhood' or p r o t r a c t e d t e r m i n a l i l l n e s s , on the other, o ld age ushers i n a p e r i o d of unique problems. Among these problems are counted the te r m i n a t i o n of g a i n f u l employment; reduced income; the onset or exacerbation of degenerative i l l n e s s ; i s o l a t i o n through death or removal of f a m i l y , f r i e n d s , and peers; increased periods of indolence; l o s s of p h y s i c a l and mental a b i l i t i e s ; widowhood; a decreas.-" ing standard of l i v i n g ; and those f e e l i n g s , emotions, thoughts and a t t i t u d e s that attend the foregoing evidences of the d e c l i n e of l i f e i n our s o c i e t y . 2 These current accompaniments to old age: a d e c l i n e i n - status, and- income., and a l e s s e n i n g of s o c i a l s a t i s f a c t i o n s , -1 Russell- Sage Foundation, Kutner, Bernard, and others, ed., F i v e Hundred Over S i x t y , A Community Survey on Ageing, Wm. F. F e l l Company, p r i n t e r s , 195>6. I b i d . , p. 5>-- 3 -are discussed In much of the current l i t e r a t u r e on the problems of ageing. Lewis Mumford, f o r in s t a n c e , considers that mod-ern s o c i e t y has- r e j e c t e d t h e i r o l d e r c i t i z e n s and that much of t h i s r e j e c t i o n is. the r e s u l t of the three-generation f a m i l y g i v i n g way to a two-generation household. In an a r t i c l e w r i t t e n f o r the A r c h i t e c t u r a l Record, he sta t e s t h a t : Probably at no per i o d and i n no c u l t u r e have the old ever been so completely r e j e c t e d as i n our own country during the l a s t generation. As t h e i r num-. bers have Increased, t h e i r p o s i t i o n has worsened. The breakup of the three-generation f a m i l y coincided here w i t h the curtailment of l i v i n g space i n the i n d i v i d u a l household; and from t h i s p h y s i c a l con-s t r i c t i o n has. come s o c i a l d e s t i t u t i o n as w e l l . Unwanted i n the cramped small home, even when they are loved, and too often unloved because they are unwanted, the aged f i n d t h e i r l i v e s p r o g r e s s i v e l y meaningless and empty, while t h e i r days i r o n i c a l l y lengthen. The years that have been added to t h e i r p o r t i o n have come, u n f o r t u n a t e l y , atthe wrong end of t h e i r l i v e s . 1 In recent years, i n t e r e s t i n understanding the i m p l i c a t i o n s of the growth of the aged p o p u l a t i o n has become widespread. This awareness has l e d to the formul-a t i o n of committees and groups to study the problem's of the older person. S i g n i f i c a n t l e a d e r s h i p In t h i s f i e l d 2 came,--.from a. C a l i f o r n i a confer once on. the : problems of .... .; Mumford, Lewis,.,, "Ror.: Older,. People—Not Segreation but I n t e g r a t i o n . " A r c h i t e c t u r a l Record, May, 195>5>> V o l . 119, No. 5, p. 191. State of C a l i f o r n i a , Governor's Conference on the Problems of the Aging. Conference Report, October, 19^1, Sacramento, C a l i f o r n i a . - k -the ageing,' which was held i n 195>1 and was headed by Governor E a r l Warren. The conference included a s t a t e -wide r e p r e s e n t a t i o n of c i t i z e n s from the f i e l d s of man-agement, labour, the p r o f e s s i o n s , c i v i c groups, s e r v i c e clubs., and senior c i t i z e n s themselves. In a l l , over two thousand r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s attended the. conference, when a comprehensive e x p l o r a t i o n was made of the problems' and needs, of the older people i n the s t a t e . The wide scope of these problems was recognized and i s shown i n the extent of the agenda. In t h i s agenda, the broad range of areas to be considered w i t h reference to the ageing,, is. amply i n d i c a t e d : Community Organization; Education; Employment Opp o r t u n i t i e s ; Housing and L i v i n g Arrangements; Income Maintenance; Mental H e a l t h ; P h y s i c a l H e a l t h ; R e c r e a t i o n ; S o c i a l Welfare S e r v i c e s ; and Research. Although many of these areas have been recognized i n the past as r e l e v a n t to the needs of the ageing, "Hous-i n g " i s somewhat of a newcomer to the group i n North America, though a long f a m i l i a r one In B r i t a i n and some coun t r i e s of western Europe. Housing has f r e q u e n t l y been i n t e r p r e t e d to mean i n s t i t u t i o n a l care, n u r s i n g homes, et c e t e r a ; but the c o n s t r u c t i o n of s p e c i f i c u n i t s f o r old people as such i s r e l a t i v e l y new: i t i s now widely advo-cated as an Important part of "the welfare of the aged." The need has become i n t e n s i f i e d because older people tend more and more to l i v e apart from t h e i r married c h i l d r e n ; the l a r g e house wi t h room f o r three generations i s no longer a v a i l a b l e ; and indeed i t i s a l l that some younger couples can do to secure housing f o r themselves and t h e i r c h i l d r e n . Senior c i t i z e n s ' h o u s i n g p r o j e c t s , which u s u a l l y include i n d i v i d u a l s e l f - c o n t a i n e d u n i t s , are one of the newer trends. In housing f o r old people today. L o c a l l y , i n the Vancouver area, s e v e r a l housing developments, have been constructed over the past few years, s p e c i f i c a l l y f o r o l d e r f o l k . These have been eagerly sought a f t e r and so f a r the numbers constructed have not n e a r l y met the demand. T h i s , too, i s the case i n West Vancouver where the f i r s t housing p r o j e c t was inaugurated only,.a year or so ago. This i s not to say that a l l the older people of West Vancouver are i n need of accommodation, f o r many of them l i v e comfortably w i t h married c h i l d r e n , who are i n a p o s i t i o n to provide f o r them. There i s s t i l l another group of older people who are able to l i v e w i t h f r i e n d s or other r e l a t i v e s . However, there seem to be p o i n t s needing i n v e s t i g a t i o n , f o r the records of s o c i a l agencies, and the experience of p r o f e s s i o n a l and v o l u n t e e r workers both i n d i c a t e that the l i v i n g arrangements f o r many o l d e r people are q u i t e u n s a t i s f a c t o r y . Not only are these arrangements. - 6 -poor because of inadequate p h y s i c a l c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s , but als o because severe f a m i l y tensions sometimes a r i s e from c o n f l i c t s between the three generations. In b u i l d i n g housing p r o j e c t s f o r older people, the question a r i s e s as to how f a r does t h i s meet t h e i r needs? The e n t i r e area of housing f o r s e n i o r c i t i z e n s i s a complex Issue and many aspects, have to be considered. The purpose of th i s , study is. to survey the needs of a sample group of older persons i n West Vancouver w i t h s p e c i f i c reference to housing and the sen i o r c i t i z e n s ' -housing p r o j e c t i n that area. Because t h i s study i s prim-a r i l y concerned with West Vancouver, a short d e s c r i p t i o n of that community w i l l be of help to the reader i n under-standing the f i n d i n g s of t h i s survey. The West Vancouver Community West Vancouver, today, i s a l a r g e and growing r e s i d e n t i a l area having s p e c i a l c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s and a t t r a c t i o n s . E s s e n t i a l l y , throughout the years, i t has remained a r e s i d e n t i a l community w i t h the residents, depending mainly on the trade .and commerce of Vancouver f o r t h e i r employment. In a d d i t i o n to employment, the M u n i c i p a l i t y i s also dependent on. Vancouver f o r many other s e r v i c e s and amenities of urban l i f e . Those r e s i d e n t s who do not work i n the c i t y , however, often f i n d i t necessary - 7 -to make p e r i o d i c v i s i t s to s p e c i a l shops, to doctors, or to attend various c u l t u r a l events In Vancouver. For most of the community, the added t r a n s p o r t a t i o n costs do not Impose r e s t r i c t i o n s on t h e i r t r a v e l l i n g ; but f o r older r e s i d e n t s w i t h a l i m i t e d income, i t does. The r e p o r t , L i v i n g and Working i n West Vancouver, published i n 19$l\., s t a t e s that West Vancouver i s c l e a r l y a "dormitory" suburb and that .an estimated 80 per cent of 2 the employed residents, work outside the m u n i c i p a l i t y . The report also p o i n t s out c l e a r l y that West Vancouver has. a hi g h p r o p o r t i o n of business and p r o f e s s i o n a l people i n i t s la b o r f o r c e , i n comparison w i t h greater Vancouver. In a d d i t i o n , the p r o p o r t i o n of t h e i r p o p u l a t i o n i n the labour f o r c e i s s i g n i f i c a n t because, " ... i t i n d i c a t e s r e l a t i v e l y few women work, a l a r g e number of old people, and longer years of schooling on the p a r t of the c h i l d r e n . These are t y p i c a l c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of a community w i t h f a i r l y h i g h Incomes." The t a x revenue on r e s i d e n t i a l property i n most communities i s , on the average, between one-third and Oberlander, H. Peter, and Robinson, I r a M., L i v i n g  and Working i n West Vancouver, B r i t i s h Columbia; An  Economic A n a l y s i s . Corporation of the M u n i c i p a l D i s t r i c t of West Vancouver, M u n i c i p a l H a l l , West Vancouver, B.C. 2 I b i d . , p. 17. 3 l b i d . , p. 16. - 8 -one-half of the taxable property."'" In West Vancouver, where there Is no i n d u s t r y , t h i s "average" does not hold t r u e , as almost nine-tenths of the revenue from property taxes i s derived from r e s i d e n t i a l land and improvements.^ This f a c t i s s i g n i f i c a n t i n determining land use p o l i c y and was commented upon i n the r e p o r t . The authors stated t h a t : ... i f West Vancouver i s to remain p r i m a r i l y a r e s i d e n t i a l suburb, I t s r e s i d e n t i a l r e a l estate should be of the most va l u a b l e type, b r i n g i n g i n the greatest amount of revenue. To meet t h i s c r i t e r i o n , the m u n i c i p a l i t y should attempt, through whatever means i t has at i t s d i s p o s a l , to a t t r a c t to the community as many r e s i d e n t s as p o s s i b l e who can 'pay t h e i r own way' i n terms'of the costs required to s e r v i c e them.-' Although the M u n i c i p a l i t y i s twelve miles long, the major p o r t i o n of the present p o p u l a t i o n of 17,000 i s concentrated between Capilano R i v e r and 28th S t r e e t , a distance of three m i l e s . This was not always the case, f o r when t h i s North Shore settlement was incorporated i n 1912, seven years a f t e r i t s founding, there were s e v e r a l small "pockets" of^ people l i v i n g a few m i l e s apart from each other. By 1938, when the Lions' Gate Bridge was opened, the population was of the order of 6,000. I b i d . , p. 7• Lbid•> P • ^ . 3 I b i d . , p. 1 0 . - 9 -There have been two waves of s e t t l e r s In West Vancouver. The f i r s t were the s e t t l e r s who came, s t a r t -ing about 1 9 0 6 , c h i e f l y to l i v e i n r u r a l surroundings; the second were the suburban home b u i l d e r s who began to move i n when the Lions' Gate Bridge was completed i n 1 9 3 8 ? and a new era of expansion began. The f i r s t were of r a t h e r modest means and s t i l l remain so; the second, on the other hand, are i n the higher income b r a c k e t s . Prom the time the Lions' Gate Bridge was opened the community grew continu-ously, though not according to any p l a n . A considerable number of summer cottages were b u i l t on the waterfront and many were to be found on the slopes of the mountain. As the p o p u l a t i o n increased, many of these dwellings became year-round residences. A great many of these became the homes of older people because they were small and f i n a n -c i a l l y w i t h i n t h e i r means. However, w i t h i n the past few years, land taxes have been Increased to a p o i n t where many of the senior c i t i z e n s have found i t necessary to move, not only from a rented room or t h e i r own home, but a l s o from West Vancouver i t s e l f , f o r they were unable to f i n d s u i t a b l e accommodation i n the m u n i c i p a l i t y . Older people i n the lower Income group who wish to remain i n the com-munity have done so, but not always without a c q u i r i n g a lower standard of l i v i n g . - 10 -Welfare Aspects of Housing The problem of p r o v i d i n g s h e l t e r f o r man i s as old as man hi m s e l f . Although through the years many problems have been solved, d i f f e r e n t ones have a r i s e n to keep s o c i e t y ever aware of the p r e s s i n g needs i n t h i s area. Throughout the ages, t r i b e s and s o c i e t i e s have b u i l t to pro t e c t themselves and t h e i r f a m i l i e s from the elements. There have been many experiments i n p r o v i d i n g housing, but the subject of p r o v i d i n g housing f o r the aged i s s t i l l new and there are many aspects yet to be explored. In Vancouver, the lead i n t h i s d i r e c t i o n has been given by the Vancouver Housing A s s o c i a t i o n . The A s s o c i a t i o n has kept the needs of a l l groups i n :the com-munity under survey f o r s e v e r a l years. Although i t has been eig h t years, since they published one of t h e i r sur-veys, Housing f o r Our Older C i t i z e n s , many of t h e i r f i n d -ings i n t h i s area are s t i l l p e r t i n e n t today. R e f e r r i n g to a survey of n i n e t y - f o u r , o l d e r people, mostly s i n g l e women, the r e p o r t (p. $) s t a t e s : Old people are l i v i n g i n a l l manner of dark crowded qua r t e r s , l a c k i n g many of the or d i n a r y conveniences; and, i n the great m a j o r i t y of cases, p r o v i s i o n f o r heating i s e n t i r e l y inadequate. In t h i n k i n g of the problem one must r e a l i z e , too, that i n most cases the aged lodger i s only t o l e r a t e d . There has been l i t t l e i n d i c a t i o n that t h i s p i c -ture has changed over the years, and i t would seem to be equall y true that older couples are f i n d i n g i t d i f f i c u l t - 11 -f i n a n c i a l l y to keep up t h e i r own homes. Of t h i s , the report says: I t might be assumed at f i r s t s i g h t that these old people who are l i v i n g i n t h e i r own homes should not be a source of concern from the housing stand-p o i n t : but f r e q u e n t l y they, too, present a problem. In very many cases, they have not s u f f i c i e n t income to keep t h e i r homes up p r o p e r l y , to heat them ade-quately, or to pay the taxes, without going short on other e s s e n t i a l s . Secondly, the house i s o f t e n too large and inconvenient f o r them to run without excessive e f f o r t . I n such i n s t a n c e s , i t would be f a r more s a t i s f a c t o r y f o r a l l concerned, i f they could move i n t o a s mall labour-saving s u i t e or cottage and release t h e i r house f o r a l a r g e r f a m i l y . These f a c t s have been known f o r a long time but l i t t l e has been done to meet the needs of older people f o r proper l i v i n g quarters. In Canada, p u b l i c housing r e c e i v e d it's f i r s t impetus a f t e r the close of World War II" when veterans' housing p r o j e c t s were constructed. In the Vancouver area, s e v e r a l developments took shape under the guidance of the F e d e r a l Government, but none of these p r o j e c t s provided accommodation f o r e l d e r l y c i t i z e n s . The . only p r o v i s i o n made f o r l o w - r e n t a l f a m i l i e s i n a p u b l i c housing development i s In the L i t t l e Mountain housing p r o j e c t e s t a b l i s h e d , a f t e r much e f f o r t , i n 1195>3 • Under present arrangements, f i v e per cent of the residences are set aside s p e c i f i c a l l y f o r e l d e r l y couples. However, because of Housing Act p r o v i s i o n s , no accommodation at - - Vancouver Housing A s s o c i a t i o n , Housing f o r Our Older  C i t i z e n s , March, 191+93 p. 6. - 12 -a l l can be made a v a i l a b l e f o r s i n g l e persons. As thus f a r i n d i c a t e d , because so l i t t l e has been done to provide accommodation f o r older people, many are l i v i n g under adverse circumstances. The conc l u s i o n of the " C a l i f o r n i a Conference," mentioned e a r l i e r , was that most older people who are i n u n s a t i s f a c t o r y l i v i n g accommodation, are probably housed In one of three ways: (1) In a house or apartment i n no way designed or b u i l t f o r t h e i r needs, but which they happen to own or occupy; (2) w i t h the f a m i l y of a married c h i l d or occas-i o n a l l y someone e l s e , u s u a l l y i n quarters p o o r l y su i t e d f o r such arrangements; (3) i n a rooming or boarding house or a t h i r d - r a t e h o t e l , often i n d e t e r i o r a t i n g neighbourhoods.1 In conducting the present study, these three c a t e g o r i e s were kept i n mind, and i n many instances the l i v i n g arrangements of the groups surveyed coincided w i t h these three c l a s s i f i c a t i o n s . Although older people, r e g a r d l e s s of f i n a n c i a l s t a t u s , are i n need of help to acquire s u i t a b l e accommo-da t i o n , those who are " f i n a n c i a l l y secure" have l e s s of a problem securing proper housing than those on government as s i s t a n c e or on a marginal income. I t i s because of these people i n the l a t t e r two groups that l o w - r e n t a l housing asbecome such-an i s s u e . I t would seem that i f pensions - State of C a l i f o r n i a , Governor's Conference on the Problems of the Aging. Conference Report, October, 19^1, Sacramento, C a l i f o r n i a , p. 66. - 13 - . were adequate the pensioners would be able to a f f o r d s u i t -able accommodation. However, t h i s i s not the case and, as a r e s u l t , low-cost housing must be provided f o r them. In West Vancouver, i t i s considered t h a t there are s e v e r a l hundred persons e i t h e r on Old Age A s s i s t a n c e or Old Age S e c u r i t y and Bonus. 1 This f i g u r e , of course, does not Include the people w i t h marginal incomes which are not much higher than these w i t h f u l l a s s i s t a n c e . . Not only i n West Vancouver, but also throughout Canada, many older people are i n r e c e i p t of low f i x e d incomes such as a n n u i t i e s , war pensions, or some form of superannuation. These people i n the low income group can i l l a f f o r d to pay one-half t h e i r income or more f o r accommodation, but many do, because there i s nothing e l s e a v a i l a b l e f o r them. Sometimes, a p e n s i o n - r e c i p i e n t secures a basement room or an a t t i c s u i t e that i s w i t h i n h i s means but r a r e l y i s t h i s "home" adequate f o r h i s needs. In such cases as these, a person's p h y s i c a l h e a l t h as w e l l as h i s mental h e a l t h can e a s i l y be impaired, thus r a i s i n g the cost of medical expense to himself and to the govern-ment- as well-. ^ Old Age A s s i s t a n c e i s paid to those between 6$ and 70 who have passed a means t e s t . The maximum amount payable i s $60 a month. This i s p a i d by the P r o v i n c i a l Government and p a r t i c i p a t e d i n by the F e d e r a l Government. Old Age S e c u r i t y i s paid to persons 70 and over, without a means t e s t , a f t e r 20 years' residence i n Canada. This i s paid by the F e d e r a l Government. There Is a bonus of $20 a month paid i n B r i t i s h Columbia w i t h a means t e s t . - Ik -S o c i a l Work and Housing Throughout the years, s o c i a l workers have come to r e a l i z e the importance of housing and i t s effects, on e n t i r e f a m i l y s i t u a t i o n s . This concept of housing i n r e l a t i o n to the "mental and p h y s i c a l h e a l t h " of older people i s summed up by the C a l i f o r n i a Study i n the s t a t e -ment : The b a s i c r e l a t i o n s h i p of housing to mental and p h y s i c a l h e a l t h and s o c i a l adjustment, that holds f o r the general p o p u l a t i o n , i s i n t e n s i f i e d w i t h advancing years. Since t h i s i s a p e r i o d of i n c r e a s i n g s e n s i t i v i t y to emotional f a c t o r s and conservation of p h y s i c a l s t r e n g t h , environmental f a c t o r s loom l a r g e i n the scale of s a t i s f a c t o r y l i v i n g arrangements. As income decreases, housing w i t h i n f i n a n c i a l reach grows l e s s d e s i r a b l e and l e s s s u i t e d to the a c t u a l needs of i n c r e a s i n g age. 1 S o c i a l agencies throughout Canada and the United States r e c e i v e numerous p l e a s f o r help i n f i n d i n g s u i t a b l e accommodation f o r older people. Most of these requests are from people who are r e c e i v i n g a s s i s t a n c e i n one form or another. There are a l s o many who are i n a marginal c l a s s . As noted e a r l i e r , there are people who have an income j u s t above the minimum which would e n t i t l e them to - f i n a n c i a l a i d . In B r i t i s h Columbia, the people i n the Governor's Conference on the Problems of the Aging, op. c i t . , p. 277-- 15 -b o r d e r l i n e group are often worse o f f than those r e c e i v i n g government a i d . Because of the r e g u l a t i o n s regarding e l i g i b i l i t y f o r low-rent housing as set down i n the 'E l d e r l y C i t i z e n s ! Housing A i d Act,""'" they are sometimes not e l i g i b l e f o r low-cost housing p r o j e c t s . To s a t i s f y this, need f o r accommodation, many agencies have set up a housing r e g i s t r y so t h a t , when someone i s i n need of a pl a c e to stay, a search through the l i s t of places a v a i l a b l e i s made to s u i t t h i s p a r t i -c u l a r persons needs. However, haying a l i s t of p o s s i b l e places to l i v e does not often solve the problem f o r older people. .In many cases, the rent i s too h i g h f o r t h e i r meagre income. Because the rent i s lower there, older people, as mentioned before, tend to l i v e i n o l d e r b u i l d -ings and d i l a p i d a t e d neighbourhoods. However, many of these o l d b u i l d i n g s are now being demolished and expensive apartment blocks are being put up on the s i t e s . In one recent year ( 1 9 5 6 ) > i n the Vancouver area, over 1|00 older 2 homes were demolished. Many of these were dwelling's i n the West. End. area wh.ere,:hundreds., of o l d e r people were . .. 1, Regulations s t i p u l a t e that occupancy, s h a l l be l i m i t e d to e l d e r l y persons whose t o t a l f i x e d income from a l l sources does not exceed the equivalent of - ll+O per cent of the Old Age A s s i s t a n c e allowance p l u s the B r i t i s h Columbia c o s t - o f - l i v i n g bonus. 2 Annual Report, Committee on Welfare of the Aged, Community Chest and C o u n c i l of Greater Vancouver, Report of the Sub-committee on Housing, January, 1 9 5 7 ? p. 3 -- 16 -housed. To a l e s s e r degree t h i s has happened i n West Vancouver. In many of the numerous a p p l i c a t i o n l e t t e r s received by the West Vancouver Senior C i t i z e n s ' Housing S o c i e t y p r i o r to the opening of t h e i r housing p r o j e c t , the applicants, stated that the owners of the homes or rooms which they rented had given them n o t i c e as the property had been sold f o r redevelopment. The p r o f e s s i o n of s o c i a l work i s deeply con-cerned not only about senior c i t i z e n s ' housing, but. a l s o about adequate and proper housing f o r the e n t i r e popul-a t i o n . The i m p l i c a t i o n s of poor housing c o n d i t i o n s and i t s . e f f e c t on f a m i l y l i f e i s discussed f r e q u e n t l y , "how-ever, I t i s only r e c e n t l y that some studies are beginning to be made l o c a l l y by s o c i a l workers. With reference to the Vancouver area, one of the f i r s t of such stud i e s was that undertaken i n 19$$ by Warren Andrew Wilson, who des-cribed "Housing Conditions .Among. S o c i a l A s s i s t a n c e Fami-l i e s . 1 , 1 This was a study of a group of 3i+7 f a m i l i e s who are r e c e i v i n g s o c i a l .allowance i n Vancouver. The study revealed that s o c i a l a s s i s t a n c e r e c i p i e n t s were not .only s u f f e r i n g from poor housing c o n d i t i o n s and high r e n t s , but also from a: serious housing shortage. .1 Wilson,. Warren Andrew, Housing Conditions Among  S o c i a l A s s i s t a n c e F a m i l i e s f'J^ffll'IT'fr^^ MaW-t^ r of S o c i a l Work thesis., U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia, 19$$. - 17 -Not a l l housing inadequacies are found i n slums, although i t i s r e a d i l y acknowledged that these areas have t h e i r share. The s o c i a l worker i s e s p e c i a l l y concerned because housing problems are encountered i n many cases which come to h i s a t t e n t i o n . I t has been said "There i s har d l y any phase of human endeavour that i s not a f f e c t e d by the con d i t i o n s under which people l i v e . " 1 Budget, and the type and convenience of the s h e l t e r , d i r e c t l y i n f l u e n c e people, i n c l u d i n g the older person, i n h i s d a i l y outlook and general w e l l - b e i n g . L a t e l y , the emphasis onvrwelfare s e r v i c e s f o r the aged has increased, but at the same time i t i s recognized that no s e r v i c e can be f u l l y e f f e c t i v e unless p r o v i s i o n Is made f o r the b a s i c n e c e s s i t i e s of l i f e . Inherent among basic s o c i a l work p r i n c i p l e s i s the r i g h t of the i n d i v i d u a l to f i n a n c i a l help when he Is not able to secure the neces-s i t i e s of l i f e . I t i s t h i s p r i n c i p l e which b r i n g s p r o f e s -s i o n a l s o c i a l work i n t o d i r e c t contact w i t h the problems of budgeting, income, and housing. The American P u b l i c Welfare A s s o c i a t i o n , i n deal i n g w i t h the problem of housing•for older people,-1 Abbott, E d i t h , The Tenements of Chicago 1 9 0 8 - 1 9 3 5 , The U n i v e r s i t y of Chicago Press, Chicago, I l l i n o i s , 1 9 3 6 , c i t i n g statement of Senator Wag-ner of New York before Senate Committee on Education and Labor, 74-th Congress, 2 n d session (Hearings) on S. 4J+23, A p r i l 2 0 - 2 9 , 1 9 3 6 , when Housing Act f o r 1 9 3 6 was under c o n s i d e r a t i o n . - 18 -b e l i e v e s that p u b l i c welfare agencies can h e l p . i n at l e a s t f i v e d i f f e r e n t ways. These are: (1) They help those older people who come to them f o r a i d f i n d the best p o s s i b l e housing arrange-ments i n terms of what is. a v a i l a b l e , t h e i r own needs and t h e i r own resources; (2) They help the i n d i v i d u a l or h i s f a m i l y with the encouragement, advice, and a i d needed to b r i n g about necessary adjustments i n l i v i n g arrange-ment s; (3) they provide the f i n a n c i a l b a s i s f o r meeting s h e l t e r needs through a s s i s t a n c e ; (k) i n some in s t a n c e s , they s t i m u l a t e and encour-age the development of needed s p e c i a l i z e d hous-ing arrangements; and (5) i n some instances they e s t a b l i s h and maintain standards of group housing f o r older people through t h e i r l i c e n s i n g a u t h o r i t y . 1 (The l i c e n s i n g a u t h o r i t y r e f e r r e d to i s the p r o v i s i o n by l e g i s l a t i o n , f o r i n s p e c t i o n and l i c e n s i n g of group homes f o r o l d e r people whether or not the inmates are i n r e c e i p t of p u b l i c assistance.) The West Vancouver S o c i a l S ervice Department p a r t i c i p a t e s a c t i v e l y i n the f i r s t three areas mentioned. The department has also been a c t i v e i n h e l p i n g p l a n s p e c i a l i z e d housing arrangements and. in. some i n s t a n c e s , through d e l e g a t i o n of a u t h o r i t y , they do maintain standards through l i c e n s i n g a u t h o r i t y . In some cases, when the S o c i a l Service A d m i n i s t r a t o r has no d i r e c t a u t h o r i t y but - American P u b l i c Welfare A s s o c i a t i o n , The Needs of  Older People. Prepared by E l i z a b e t h Wickenden f o r the Committee on Aging, An A n a l y s i s and D e s c r i p t i o n of P u b l i c Welfare Experience, p. 91. - 19 -where the s i t u a t i o n i s one i n which the welfare of the aged i s at stake he often p a r t i c i p a t e s i n an i n d i r e c t manner, through h i s knowledge of resources i n the com-munity. Low-Rental Housing S u i t a b l e housing, f o r o l d e r people i s q u i t e scarce, and even serious c o n s i d e r a t i o n of t h i s matter i s very recent. In the past few years, there has been considerable a t t e n t i o n given to t h i s subject, as w e l l as experimentation. Many communities have surveyed the needs of t h e i r o l d e r people and placed h i g h p r i o r i t y on housing, but a c t u a l experience i n handling the problems i s e v i d e n t l y s c a t t e r e d . In p r o v i d i n g housing f o r the aged, there i s no s i n g l e a l l - i n c l u s i v e answer and var i o u s experiments are being undertaken i n order to f i n d a s o l u t i o n t o the problem. An example of t h i s i s the U p h o l s t e r e r s ' I n t e r -n a t i o n a l Union's c o n s t r u c t i o n of a "retirement v i l l a g e . ""^  This v i l l a g e Is a new concept i n t h i s f i e l d as i t i s an "ol d people's town," complete w i t h houses, apartments, h o s p i t a l , c r a f t shops,- s t o r e s , and a great v a r i e t y of r e c r e a t i o n a l and therapeutic f a c i l i t i e s . This p l a n f o r 1 This "retirement v i l l a g e " i s s i t u a t e d at S.alhaven, F l o r i d a , and i s described In "Some Current Attempts at Bet t e r B u i l d i n g s , " A r c h i t e c t u r a l Record, May, ±9$6, V o l . 119, No. 5, p. 200. - 20 -older people w i l l be much studied f o r i t provides a l i v e l y t e s t f o r the thought that the aged should have t h e i r own town planned e x c l u s i v e l y f o r t h e i r own needs. Other, less, i n d u s t r i o u s forms of housing are to be found throughout the United States and Canada. These incl u d e the i n d i v i d u a l s m a l l house, s i t u a t e d l i k e any other house i n a normal community and the s o - c a l l e d "mother-in-law house." Though many older people d e s i r e a small house, few of these have so f a r been b u i l t . The major d i f f i c u l t y here i s that of favourable f i n a n c i n g f o r a one-bedroom house which i s a l s o s a i d to have small r e s a l e value. Perhaps f u r t h e r experience may prove t h a t t h i s type of housing i s p r a c t i c a l . The small independent u n i t attached to the house of a married son or daughter has a l s o been used but as yet there has been l i t t l e • research i n t o the meri t s of such p l a n s . In a d d i t i o n t o the retirement v i l l a g e or the small i n d i v i d u a l house, there are three other main types of l i v i n g accommodation which can be constructed f o r o l d people. These are: ( l ) small s i n g l e housing u n i t s w i t h i n the l a r g e r community; (2) apartment houses; and (3) semi-I n s t i t u t i o n a l housing. The small s i n g l e u n i t s idea seems to be the most e x t e n s i v e l y used i n p r o v i d i n g homes f o r the aged. Many communities have found r e c e n t l y that the m a j o r i t y of e l d e r l y people i n need of housing are s i n g l e persons. Therefore, apartment houses, w i t h f o u r or e i g h t - 21 -small s u i t e s , have been constructed along w i t h the s i n g l e housing u n i t s . S e m i - i n s t i t u t i o n a l housing has been undertaken, i n a few c i t i e s , by some r e l i g i o u s and f r a t -e r n a l groups who formerly l i m i t e d t h e i r endeavours to i n s t i t u t i o n a l care. The p l a n c a l l s f o r a wider range of l i v i n g arrangements from cottages to an i n f i r m a r y . These f a c i l i t i e s a l l o w the residents, to t r a n s f e r from one type of accommodation to another as. the need a r i s e s . In B r i t i s h Columbia and p a r t i c u l a r l y i n the Greater Vancouver area, the main type of l i v i n g accomod-a t i o n provided f o r senior c i t i z e n s has been i n the nature of small s i n g l e u n i t s f o r married couples and apartments f o r s i n g l e persons, grouped together i n one area to form a " p r o j e c t . " The s i z e of these v a r i o u s p r o j e c t s ranges from accommodation f o r twenty-four persons to accommodation f o r over one hundred and f i f t y persons. T r a d i t i o n a l l y , r e l i g i o u s , f r a t e r n a l , s e r v i c e , and p h i l a n t h r o p i c s o c i e -t i e s have provided most of the s p e c i a l i z e d housing f o r older people. Today, t h i s t r a d i t i o n s t i l l e x i s t s , except f o r the added p r o v i s i o n that government often p a r t i c i p a t e s , through f i n a n c i a l a i d . In a report on the b u i l d i n g of low r e n t a l housing f o r senior c i t i z e n s , the Vancouver Housing A s s o c i a t i o n considers that there are two means by which housing can be provided. - 22 -The senior l e v e l s of government, a c t i n g at the request of a m u n i c i p a l i t y , may construct subsid-ized housing p r o j e c t s under Section 36 of the N a t i o n a l Housing Act. Under t h i s s e c t i o n , the F e d e r a l and P r o v i n c i a l Governments put up 75 % and 2.$% of the c a p i t a l r e s p e c t i v e l y , while i n B r i t i s h Columbia, the annual subsidy represented by the operating l o s s i s borne i n the f o l l o w i n g p r o p o r t i o n s : F e d e r a l 75$ > P r o v i n c i a l l2|-$, M u n i c i p a l 12j#. The report continues: The F e d e r a l Government i s at present, however, not prepared to p a r t i c i p a t e i n the c o n s t r u c t i o n of housing f o r senior c i t i z e n s , except as p a r t of a p r o j e c t f o r f a m i l i e s with c h i l d r e n , and d i f f i c u l t y may be experienced i n i n t e r e s t i n g m u n i c i p a l i t i e s i n i n i t i a t i n g p u b l i c housing p r o j e c t s f o r working f a m i l i e s . A l t e r n a t i v e l y , a m u n i c i p a l i t y may provide the c a p i t a l required f o r a n o n - p r o f i t s o c i e t y or c o r p o r a t i o n (norm-a l l y 10$) to q u a l i f y f o r a P r o v i n c i a l grant and C.M.H.C. f i n a n c i n g . The report s t a t e s f u r t h e r : In the l a r g e r c i t i e s , owing to the magnitude of the problem, p u b l i c housing f o r s e n i o r c i t i z e n s w i l l c e r t a i n l y be r e q u i r e d . In smaller communities, however, i t i s p o s s i b l e that the need may be met i n many cases by s o c i e t i e s or corporations sponsored by p r i v a t e groups of c i t i z e n s . 1 The p r o v i n c i a l grant r e f e r r e d to i n t h i s r e p o r t i s the r e s u l t of the " E l d e r l y C i t i z e n s ' Housing A i d Act" passed i n 1955. Under t h e terms of t h i s a c t , the Government of B r i t i s h Columbia w i l l pay up to o n e - t h i r d " B u i l d i n g f o r Senior C i t i z e n s , " , an unpublished r e p o r t of the Vancouver Housing A s s o c i a t i o n , January, 1956. - 23 -of the c a p i t a l cost provided that the scheme meets the required standards as o u t l i n e d w i t h i n the act and i t s r e g u l a t i ons. 1 Although the P r o v i n c i a l Government has set out r e g u l a t i o n s , the a c t u a l a d m i n i s t r a t i o n and maintenance of the i n d i v i d u a l developments i s taken care of by the v a r i o u s sponsoring groups. In the Greater Vancouver area, there are se v e r a l p r i v a t e groups who have taken advantage of the P r o v i n c i a l Government's o f f e r of one-third of c a p i t a l c o s t s , and by g a i n i n g some c o n s i d e r a t i o n from the c i t y or m u n i c i p a l i t y concerned, they have succeeded i n p r o v i d i n g low-cost housing f o r many older people. Recently, a p r i v a t e group i n West Vancouver received such a grant and was able to provide t h e i r community wi t h a senior c i t i z e n s ' housing p r o j e c t which accommodates twenty-four persons. The o r g a n i z a t i o n r e s -p o n s i b l e f o r i n i t i a t i n g and maintaining the p r o j e c t i s known as the West Vancouver Senior C i t i z e n s ' Housing S o c i e t y . Although t h i s group was formed w i t h i n the past few years, the need f o r low-cost housing was recognized s e v e r a l years ago by the West Vancouver Welfare Association.£ 1 See Appendix A f o r the r e g u l a t i o n s under t h i s A c t . p The West Vancouver Welfare A s s o c i a t i o n i s a p r i v a t e o r g a n i z a t i o n which provides g e n e r a l ' a s s i s t a n c e and advi s -ory s e r v i c e s to persons i n need. I t i s a f i n a n c i a l l y p a r t i c i p a t i n g memberc-of the Community Chestaand C o u n c i l . - zk -However, despite the Welfare A s s o c i a t i o n ' s e f f o r t s to meet t h i s need, no plan could be formulated that would s a t i s f y a l l the groups concerned. I t was not u n t i l e a r l y i n 1953, that the Kiwanis of West Vancouver formed the West Vancouver Senior C i t i z e n s ' ' Housing S o c i e t y , and set about to p l a n , c o n s t r u c t , and maintain s i n g l e and married low-rent quarters f o r e l d e r l y people. Because of the former r e s t r i c t i o n s placed on housing developments f o r S:enior c i t i z e n s by the C e n t r a l Mortgage and Housing Corporation, i t was not p o s s i b l e to construct more u n i t s f o r s i n g l e people than f o r married couples. This mortgage requirement d i d not take i n t o c o n s i d e r a t i o n the f a c t that there are more older s i n g l e people than there are married couples needing accommodation, and t h e r e f o r e , i n the housing p r o j e c t s throughout the Greater Vancouver area, considerably more accommodation has been provided f o r married couples than f o r s i n g l e persons. The o r i g i n a l p r oposal of the West Vancouver group i n 1953 was that the p r o j e c t , when completed, would accommodate 126 p e r s o n s — n i n e t y - t w o i n couple u n i t s and t h i r t y - f o u r i n s i n g l e s u i t e s . The f i r s t u n i t s to be developed were s i x duplex cottages which would house twenty-four persons. However, a f t e r some c o n s i d e r a t i o n - 2$ -of the need, these plans were a l t e r e d to reduce the number of duplexes i n order to provide bachelor type s u i t e s which appeared to be i n f a r greater demand. When the f i r s t stage of development was completed l a s t year i n A p r i l , housing was a v a i l a b l e f o r twenty-four persons — e i g h t married couples and eight s i n g l e women. Future plans i n d i c a t e t h a t the a s s o c i a t i o n i s i n t e r e s t e d . i n f u r t h e r developing the e x i s t i n g p r o j e c t to accommodate more s i n g l e persons. At present, the rent f o r a s i n g l e u n i t is. f i f t e e n d o l l a r s a month. In a d d i t i o n to t h i s amount, the r e s i d e n t i s r e q u i r e d to pay an a d d i t i o n a l eleven d o l l a r s which covers the costs i n c u r r e d i n heating and the use of the u t i l i t i e s . The t o t a l charge f o r couples i s t h i r t y - s e v e n d o l l a r s which i n c l u d e s a twelve d o l l a r charge f o r e l e c t r i -c i t y . Method of the. Survey This survey of housing requirements seeks to describe v a r i o u s s i t u a t i o n s i n which married couples and s i n g l e women are p r e s e n t l y l i v i n g . 1 The term " s i n g l e " , 1 P a r a l l e l w ith t h i s , a study has been s t a r t e d of a few senior c i t i z e n p r o j e c t s , i n c l u d i n g the West Vancouver scheme. The study focuses on the a t t i t u d e s and f e e l i n g s of the people l i v i n g i n these u n i t s as w e l l as the admin-i s t r a t i o n and type of accommodation provided by the sponsoring groups. Sharp, P a t r i c i a , Housing P r o j e c t s f o r Old People ( P r o v i s i o n a l T i t l e ) , Master of S o c i a l Work t h e s i s , U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia, 19^7• - 26 -women as used throughout t h i s study, not only includes unmarried women, but also widows, divorcees., and those separated from t h e i r husbands. With reference to the si n g l e o l d e r people, i n the l i g h t of i n f o r m a t i o n gained while t h i s t h e s i s was i n a preparatory stage, i t was decided to confine the study of s i n g l e people to s i n g l e women only, instead of i n c l u d i n g the s i n g l e men. The reason f o r t h i s d e c i s i o n l a y i n the f i n d i n g t h a t more than ten times as many requests f o r housing came from women than from men. 1 In a d d i t i o n , there seemed to be f a r fewer s i n g l e men r e a d i l y a v a i l a b l e to interview.. Another important c o n s i d e r a t i o n was the f a c t t h a t i n general, men seek out boarding homes as t h e i r p r e f e r r e d residence. Apparently t h i s preference i s due to the f a c t that few men have been used to cooking t h e i r own meals or cleaning t h e i r own rooms. In an address to the C a l i f o r n i a Conference on the problems of the aging, Governor E a r l Warren spoke to the e f f e c t that planning f o r older people e n t a i l e d planning more f o r women than f o r men. He s a i d , "we know, f o r example, that i n c r e a s i n g l y , as we t a l k about older people,- we - are t a l k i n g about the problem of aging women. 1 P r i o r to the opening of the Senior C i t i z e n s ' Housing P r o j e c t i n West Vancouver, i n 19^6, ten times as many a p p l i c a t i o n s were received from s i n g l e women as. from s i n g l e men. - 27 -By 1 9 0 0 , men who were 65 years of age or older outnumbered women by f a r , but today, there are 1 0 0 women over 65 f o r every 9 0 men."1 Although t h i s f i g u r e - o f ten women f o r 2 every nine men does not hold true f o r the Vancouver area, the p r o p o r t i o n of widowed women to widowed men over age s i x t y - f i v e , i s s l i g h t l y over 2 : 1 ; by adding to t h i s , the pr o p o r t i o n of men and women who have never married (the percentage is. about the same), i t can be seen that there are almost twice as many women i n need of s i n g l e accom-3 modation as men. The f a c t of the preponderance of s i n g l e women over s i n g l e men, i n the over s i x t y - f i v e age group, W a s also stressed as s i g n i f i c a n t i n planning by the U n i v e r s i t y of Michigan's Annual Conference on the Ageing, when i t was stated t h a t : In 1 9 ^ 0 ... s l i g h t l y more than one t h i r d of the women, but almost two t h i r d s of the men, (over 6 5 ) were married; and more than one-half of the women, but about one f o u r t h of the men, were widowed. The la r g e p r o p o r t i o n of widows among women aged . .-• , s i x t y - f i v e and-over, which, r e f lect.s . the higher S t a t e of C a l i f o r n i a , Governor ?s Conference on the  Problems of the Aging. Conference Report, October, 1 9 5 l , Sacramento, C a l i f o r n i a , p. 1 6 . In 193>1 there were 2 3 , 2 3 1 men over the age of s i x t y -f i v e as. compared w i t h 2 0 , 9 7 5 women i n the Vancouver area. Canada Census, 1 9 5 l -J Page, H.G., "Our Older P o p u l a t i on, Canadian Welfare, Volume XXXI, No. 1 , May, 1 9 5 5 , p. 5 -- 28 -m o r t a l i t y of males, the greater tendency of widowers to remarry,, and the lower average age of women at marriage, i s , from the p o i n t of view of planning f o r the welfare of e l d e r l y persons, the most s i g n i f i c a n t f a c t to emerge from the s t a t i s t i c s of m a r i t a l s t a t u s . 1 Although these f i n d i n g s are c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of the American scene, very l i t t l e d i f f e r e n c e i s to be found i n the Canad-ia n p a t t e r n . This does not n e c e s s a r i l y mean that there i s no need to provide housing f o r men as w e l l as f o r o l d e r women. However, i t does seem that t h e i r needs and circumstances tend to be d i f f e r e n t . I t might w e l l be that the housing needs of men are of s u f f i c i e n t magnitude as to warrant a complete study by I t s e l f . Having decided to survey married couples' and s i n g l e women, i t was necessary to devise a means whereby a sample of the o l d e r p o p u l a t i o n could be interviewed. However, before this, was done, i t was necessary to draw up a sample questionnaire and have a few p r e l i m i n a r y i n t e r v i e w s to ensure the v a l i d i t y and r e l i a b i l i t y of the study. Two s i n g l e and two married couples' names were taken from the f i l e s of the West Vancouver S o c i a l Service Department and these people were seen. From t h i s sample study, the obvious f a u l t s i n the. q uestionnaire came i n t o focus and were corrected-Donahue, Wilma, ed., Housing the Ageing, U n i v e r s i t y of Michigan Press, Ann Arbor, Michigan, 195k* P* & -- 29 -(see Appendix B..) . The most Important f e a t u r e learned from t h i s p r e l i m i n a r y survey was tha t the people were r a t h e r apprehensive i n answering the questions. Regard-l e s s of how. much c o n f i d e n t i a l i t y was st r e s s e d , they s t i l l seemed somewhat taken aback by the nature of the Interview. This pointed out the n e c e s s i t y of acquainting those to be seen w i t h some informat i o n p r i o r to the i n t e r v i e w w i t h them. A second attempt was made to improve the i n t e r -viewing techniques' when the w r i t e r s were I n v i t e d to attend a r e g u l a r meeting of the West Vancouver Senior C i t i z e n s ' Club. For t h i s group, a supplementary q u e s t i o n -n a i r e (Appendix C) was designed so that the members of the group could f i l l I t i n by themselves, a f t e r a small prepar-atory explanation. In s p i t e of w r i t t e n and v e r b a l explan-a t i o n s , many of the questions were m i s i n t e r p r e t e d and answered i n c o r r e c t l y . These people were a l s o asked to sign t h e i r names and addresses i f they d i d not mind having i n d i v i d u a l i n t e r v i e w s at a l a t e r date. Of the twenty-one people i n attendance, only about h a l f were w i l l i n g to have an i n d i v i d u a l i n t e r v i e w . Those who did not wish to be interviewed were e i t h e r somewhat apprehensive i n g i v i n g i n f o r m a t i o n or d i d not f e e l they had problems w i t h regard to housing. - 3 0 -Although the names obtained from the West Van-couver Senior C i t i z e n s ' Club represented a " c r o s s - s e c t i o n " of the older f o l k i n West Vancouver, they were not s u f f i c -i e n t i n number f o r the purposes" of t h i s study. As- the major concern of t h i s survey i s w i t h people i n the lower income group, i t was decided that a sample of people taken from the m u n i c i p a l i t y ' s s o c i a l s e r v i c e records would be s u f f i c i e n t to complete the study. In a l l , a t o t a l of f i f t y people were interviewed i n t h e i r homes. To prepare the s e l e c t e d people f o r i n t e r v i e w s , the S o c i a l Service Department's A d m i n i s t r a t o r sent l e t t e r s (Appendix D) to the people chosen from h i s f i l e s . This a s s i s t a n c e was i n v a l u a b l e because the l e t t e r s introduced the o l d people, i n advance, to the subject of the survey and prepared them f o r the v i s i t of the canvassers. The importance of an i n t r o d u c t i o n , such as these l e t t e r s ^ c a n n o t be over emphasized. CHAPTER 2 HOUSING- NEEDS OF OLDER COUPLES The house was o l d . The o l d man got up from h i s c h a i r and answered the door. He was su r p r i s e d when the canvasser s a i d she would l i k e to speak to him and to his. wife about t h e i r house and housing f o r o l d e r people i n the d i s t r i c t . He d i d not hear very w e l l and was not q u i t e sure what the canvasser was t a l k i n g about, but asked her to come.In anyway. He c a l l e d h i s w i f e , and the o l d lady j o i n e d her husband. She too was confused and apprehensive when she heard a survey of housing f o r the aged was being made. "Why are you asking us?" We want your o p i n i o n , was the r e p l y . " I t ' s notuse asking us, we can't do anything about i t , we're too old.". Of only one t h i n g they were sure: "There's nothing l i k e having your-own home—and we wouldn^t want to l i v e w i t h our grown-up c h i l d r e n . " The old man said i f h i s wife died before he d i d , he would c a r r y on here as long as he could. He would not go to an old men's home before he had t o , as "you have to give up some of your freedom." This Is a f a i r l y t y p i c a l example of the couples v i s i t e d . However, the survey soon showed that there was a d e f i n i t e d i v i s i o n i n circumstances and i n f e e l i n g s about their"homes," between the homeowners and those who were r e n t i n g accommodation. How many older couple's-'.in - 32 -West Vancouver do own t h e i r own homes; on the other hand, how many are r e n t i n g accommodation? What i s t h e i r s i t u -a t i o n ? What are t h e i r problems? These questions cannot be f u l l y answered without much more comprehensive canvassing than was p o s s i b l e f o r t h i s study, but some r e p r e s e n t a t i v e impressions were secured which permit the wider l i n e s of d i v i s i o n to be discerned. A trend that became evident as the study proceeded was the higher p r o p o r t i o n of homeowners, compared w i t h the couples who occupy rented accommodation, and t h e i r r e a c t i o n s are described f i r s t . A. Homeowners Of the fou r t e e n couples included i n the study, ten couples ( 7 0 per cent) are homeowners. 1 The age d i s t r i -b u t i o n i n the group of homeowners i s as f o l l o w s : three i n the age group 6 f>-69, eight i n the age group 7 0 - 7 4 , and nine i n the age group 7$-QL\.. In the owning group the average age of men i s 7 6 . 7 and of women i t i s 7 0 . 8 . Most of the homes seen have f o u r rooms and are-of frame c o n s t r u c t i o n . One house has s i x rooms but the u p s t a i r s was closed o f f , l e a v i n g the owners three rooms downstairs. One house i s a three-roomed cottage w i t h no basement.. 1 Included in. the "own home" group Is one couple who had l i v e d w i t h a r e l a t i v e f o r oyer twenty years and consider the residence an "own home"; and a l s o included is. one couple who l i v e i n a home owned by a r e l a t i v e although the home i s i n a l l other respects the same as t h e i r own home. - 33 -"We've Been i n This. House a. Long Time" The couples who own t h e i r homes, have a l l l i v e d i n West Vancouver f o r over ten years, and each has .been i n the same house a l l of t h i s time. Length of time i n present house v a r i e s from ten to f o r t y years, the average stay being 21.8 years.. Seven couples are l i v i n g i n the same house as when they f i r s t came to West Vancouver. Three couples had p r e v i o u s l y l i v e d i n a l a r g e r house i n West Vancouver, and moved to t h e i r present smaller house when t h e i r f a m i l i e s le\..t home. A l l but one of the homeowning couples were born i n the B r i t i s h I s l e s . A l s o , a l l but one of the homeowners have resided i n B r i t i s h Columbia f o r over f o r t y years. The longest residence i n B r i t i s h Columbia, is. s i x t y - f i v e , years and the shortest Is eleven years.. . Repairs pose a r e a l problem f o r the age.d home-owner. The longer they have l i v e d i n the house, the older the house i s , and the o l d e r the house i s the more I t needs r e p a i r s . E s p e c i a l l y f o r those who are no longer able to do the repairs, themselves, p a i n t i n g , and general upkeep presents d i f f i c u l t i e s . Who w i l l do i t now? Or perhaps i t must be l e f t undone. The new.er homes,, th a t i s , the ones l e s s than twenty years o l d , are In the b e t t e r s t a t e of r e p a i r s . The owners of these homes, of which there are only three, are mostly able to keep up w i t h r e p a i r s - 3k -and upkeep because they can s t i l l do them themselves and because the r e p a i r s are not so great as f o r an older house. Mr. A., i s a t y p i c a l owner i n t h i s group. He said " I t costs me three hundred d o l l a r s a year f o r r e p a i r s and upkeep ( i n c l u d i n g taxes) and we are j u s t able to scrape by."- He Indicated they had given, some thought to s e l l i n g but i f they sold t h e i r home they would be cut o f f the pension bonus and would have to pay more f o r rent. He said " i f you s e l l , you're l o s t , they would cut you o f f . " Mr. A. i s s e v e n t y - f i v e years of age and has. l i v e d i n West Vancouver since he was a young man. His wife is. seventy. Their bungalow appeared to be i n good c o n d i t i o n and Mr. A. said he i s s t i l l able to do the upkeep h i m s e l f . He added that i n order to maintain t h e i r p lace they "just have to l i v e down to the d o l l a r a l l the time." He r e a l i z e s , how-ever, t h a t because h i s house is. not o l d , he is. i n a more favourable p o s i t i o n than some. Seven out of ten homeowners were i n houses twenty years ol d or o l d e r , and a l l of these couples i n d i c a t e d there are r e p a i r s and upkeep needed which they are unable to pay f o r . Thus., a higher percentage of homeowners l i v e i n o l d e r houses where more r e p a i r s are needed. There i s a l s o a higher percentage of t h i s group who are no longer able to make t h e i r own r e p a i r s . Some of the reasons given f o r not being able to do r e p a i r s were: "he .can!-t reach up now" and "not able to climb now." These people are s t i l l - 35 -able to get around and to continue gardening but are not able to get up on ladders or to do any overhead work. For most of the homeowners., i t i s d i f f i c u l t to give any approximation of the amount i t would cost to " f i x up the house." However, the B.'s seemed to be an average couple i n the twenty to f o r t y year o l d houses. T h e i r main problem i s l a c k of funds f o r r e p a i r s to the house. Mr. B.. s a i d : the house needs a new r o o f , p a i n t i n g outside, and i n , new pipes throughout and d r a i n s i n the basement. He estim-ated t h i s would cost at l e a s t one thousand d o l l a r s which they cannot a f f o r d . Mrs. B. added, "we daren't t h i n k of these t h i n g s . " In a l l the older homes, the commonest items needed which were mentioned were: new r o o f , r e d e c o r a t i n g outside and i n , new steps, new d r a i n s . The same s t o r y was repeated over and over. One couple, where the man was unable to do any heavy outside work, had to pay out f i f t y d o l l a r s r e c e n t l y f o r an es.sential outside job on t h e i r property. They were overwhelmed by the h i g h cost but had no a l t e r n a t i v e . The o l d woman s a i d w i t h a s i g h "that got me." Another old homeowner when asked about r e p a i r s and upkeep, summed up h i s s i t u a t i o n by saying "there i s l o t s we could do but when you don't have the money you have to stay without, that-'s a l l . " Another couple, when asked i f r e p a i r s were needed, s a i d q u i e t l y : "There are, but we won'-t be having them done." - 36 -Why have they stayed so long In the same house? Th e i r answers were simple: "There's an I n s t i n c t i v e f e e l i n g that i t ' s ours"; and "we l i k e i t here, because we l i k e l i v i n g i n West Vancouver." Some added that they t h i n k West Vancouver a "healthy p l a c e " to l i v e and they enjoy the semi - r u r a l s e t t i n g . These couples l i v e alone and share household d u t i e s , the wife u s u a l l y doing the housework and the husband l o o k i n g a f t e r the garden and the furnace and u s u a l l y having a workshop i n the basement. There i s only one of these "own homes" which does not have a basement and the owners wish i t had, e s p e c i a l l y as they have no way of heating the place s a t i s f a c t o r i l y . These couples who owned t h e i r homes appear to f i n d a sense of s e c u r i t y i n owing t h e i r homes and i n hav-in g l i v e d i n the same house f o r a decade or more. I t could be sai d they have "put down r o o t s . " The house seemed to take on a p e r s o n i f i c a t i o n , as i f i t were i n i t s e l f a r e f l e c t i o n of former days. The m a j o r i t y had. r a i s e d t h e i r c h i l d r e n i n t h i s home, i t s surroundings are f a m i l i a r and they are content there. In t h e i r f e e l i n g s toward the house there seemed to be a k i n s h i p w i t h the c a p t a i n Is pledge to '.go down w i t h the s h i p . •'- They seemed to be saying, not only, "This house belongs to me," but also " I belong to t h i s house." An example i s Mr. and Mrs. B. who have l i v e d i n t h e i r present house, which they now own, f o r over t h i r t y - 37 -years. They are both In t h e i r seventies and i n apparent good h e a l t h . Both e x h i b i t e d v i t a l i t y and exuberance and i n t e r e s t i n l i f e . When speaking about how long they had l i v e d i n t h i s house, Mrs. B. added "and I want to die here." The house was neat and cozy, having a good s i z e d k i t c h e n where they take a l l t h e i r meals, a small l i v i n g room which was a r t i s t i c a l l y arranged, and two small bed-rooms. Mr. B. i s very fond of h i s garden, c a l l i n g i t "h i s l i f e , " and Mrs. B. keeps busy i n the house, her hobbies being baking and sewing. Mrs.. B. does not get out much, other than down the road to shop and to church. She "cannot a f f o r d the bus f a r e , " she s a i d , t o be able to go i n t o Vancouver very o f t e n . The Cost of Ownership "The other side of the c o i n " f o r the homeowners and t h e i r precious possession i s the cost of keeping i t going. Are costs of u t i l i t i e s and taxes l e a v i n g the homeowners w i t h l e s s than a marginal budget f o r food and c l o t h i n g ? The l i s t which f o l l o w s shows what the home-owners use f o r cooking and the monthly average cost.'*' This i s the only item on which there i s considerable v a r i a t i o n . Two couples who shared w i t h r e l a t i v e s are not i n c l u d e d . - 38 -No. u s i n g • t h i s Average - cost Cook by: commodity per month O i l 3 $lk.00 E l e c t r i c i t y 3 10.00 1 Wood 1 6.00 Sawdust 1 4.00 The t o t a l average monthly u t i l i t y costs f o r those couples using o i l f o r cooking, and c o a l and wood i n the furnace, i s l i s t e d below. Average - cost per month Cooking ( o i l ) &I4..OO Heating ( c o a l and wood) 9-5>0 E l e c t r i c i t y 3.^0 Telephone k-k-l Water 2.20 O i l stoves are the most common type of f a c i l i t y f o r cooking which i s used by the group st u d i e d . O i l f o r cooking also gives some heat i n the k i t c h e n . F r e q u e n t l y , old stoves have been converted to o i l to save buying a new stove. Heat i s oft e n the l i f e l i n e of the aged person. Mrs. C., f o r example, i n v i t e d the w r i t e r i n t o the k i t c h e n where she pointed to the- o i l stove and said " t h i s has kept 1 This amount includes a l l e l e c t r i c i t y used i n the home, not f o r cooking only. Likewise, the cost of o i l i n c l u d e s some heating-. - 39 -us. a l i v e a l l w i n t e r . " Asked i f they had a furnace, Mr. C. s a i d they had, but i t i s very old and needs to be r e p a i r e d , so they had l i v e d i n the k i t c h e n most of the w i n t e r . They would l i k e an o i l stove but i t was u s e l e s s evan to t h i n k of i t . S e v e r a l couples mentioned the cost of having the o i l stove cleaned. These stoves are .usually quite o l d , two or three owners i n d i c a t i n g they had had t h e i r s f o r over twenty years. They said the cost of having the o i l stove cleaned was three d o l l a r s and f i f t y cents, and w i t h the o i l they are using now, i t was necessary to have the stove cleaned every two or three months, otherwise i t would not work. A l l but one of the couples used coa l and wood i n the furnace. S e v e r a l who were i n the older group (over se v e n t y - f i v e years) mentioned that they found i t was a l l they could manage at times to keep the furnace operating, and they would have l i k e d to convert to gas or o i l i f they could have afforded i t . One had no .furnace and r e l i e d , f o r heating s o l e l y on the k i t c h e n stove and a f i r e p l a c e i n the l i v i n g -room. A l l but one of the couples had telephones and s e v e r a l mentioned that they thought i t "an extravagance" but that they needed i t " i n case of an emergency.!': Some mentioned the h e a l t h c o n d i t i o n of the husband or wife as the reason they had the phone. Several mentioned that they used the phone "seldom" and thought the $i(..i+l charge per - 40 -month was r e a l l y more than they could a f f o r d . Water r a t e s were an item f o r which most of the aged couples thought they were paying more, than t h e i r f a i r share. They pointed out that because of the f l a t r a t e , they were paying the same water rates, as l a r g e r households, who used much more water. Most d i d t h e i r laundry i n the k i t c h e n sink and s a i d they had much l e s s laundry than f a m i l i e s . Several stated t h a t t h e i r bathrooms are so cold t h a t they are c u r t a i l e d i n u s i n g the bath during the winter. One owner, who had no furnace and whose bathroom w,as b u i l t on to the back of the house, described the bathroom as "an icebox." This e i g h t y - y e a r - o l d couple s a i d they d i d not t h i n k the o l d people should have to pay the same h i g h water r a t e s as other users and added that the old people "didn't get any breaks," The o l d lady said "when everything i s p a i d , there's nothing l e f t f o r c l o t h e s . " I t was noted that the couples seen were a l l meticulous about "paying a l l the b i l l s . " "Taxes Are Going Up A l l the. Time" A l l of the aged homeowners v i s i t e d mentioned "taxes going up each year" as a source of r e a l concern to them. This was mentioned more oft e n than r i s i n g costs of any other item and seemed to be not only a source of worry but also a source of annoyance. Food and f u e l costs had - kl -gone up, too; but these were expenditures oyer which they had a l i t t l e c o n t r o l - - t h e y could put l e s s c o a l on the furnace or t u r n down the o i l i n the ki t c h e n stove. Taxes had to be met i n f u l l . One couple mentioned that t h e i r taxes had gone up 1 0 0 per cent i n the. l a s t ten years, while i n the meantime the house was i n need of r e p a i r s . When they had complained to the assessor's o f f i c e , they had been t o l d t h a t t h e i r land had increased i n value. The approximate tax ra t e s ( 1 9 5 5 ) of the couples seen were as. f o l l o w s : ten to twenty-year-old houses $ 1 3 8 . 3 3 , f o r the twenty to f o r t y -y e a r - o l d houses $ 1 1 7 . 0 0 . One aged couple sai d they were already one year behind i n payment of t h e i r taxes and added "and we'.ve no more bonds to cash." The wife i s handicapped and they f e e l q u i t e b i t t e r about t h e i r f r u g a l l i v i n g c o n d i t i o n s . Another couple brought out the p o i n t that before they were s i x t y -f i v e years o l d , they had required f i n a n c i a l a s s i s t a n c e because of the i l l n e s s of the husband and i n order to get help t h i s couple had to reduce t h e i r assets to one hundred dollars,- which meant s e l l i n g a few bonds ;they had accumul-ated. When they became s i x t y - f i v e years of age and were e l i g i b l e f o r o l d age a s s i s t a n c e , the r e g u l a t i o n s allowed that the a p p l i c a n t s r e t a i n one thousand d o l l a r s i n as s e t s . However, at that time they had no way of accumulating assets and the p r o v i s i o n f o r r e t a i n i n g one thousand d o l l a r s i n - lV2 -assets was t h e r e f o r e of no use to them. They said, i f they had been able to r e t a i n .a small amount i n assets, t h i s would have helped considerably now. w i t h taxes and unforeseen expenses which a r i s e from month to month. Real hardship was observed i n a number of homes where the aged homeowner i s c o n t i n u i n g to meet Increased c o s t s , often at the expense of h i s own personal comfort. Mr. and Mrs. C. are both over seventy and have l i v e d i n West Vancouver f o r over t h i r t y years. They have continued to l i v e i n the same home a l l of t h i s time. The house which i s of frame con-s t r u c t i o n i s now badly i n need of r e p a i r s which, the C ' s are unable to have done because of t h e i r l a c k of funds. They are both i n poor h e a l t h and unable to do outside- work. The C ' s are q u i t e a. s t a t e l y l o o k i n g couple. Mrs. C. looked out the window at the grounds which are now unkept and said to the w r i t e r "we used to have such a b e a u t i f u l garden." She i s now handicapped and needs help from her husband i n d r e s s i n g and attending to- the household. The C ' s presented a. p i t i a b l e s i g h t as. they struggled v a l i a n t l y w i t h the day to day business of l i v i n g . The house smelled damp and musty. The rooms were dreary and badly i n need of r e d e c o r a t i n g . The furnace was out of order. In s p i t e of t h e i r impoverished surroundings, threadbare c l o t h i n g and poor health,, both Mr. and Mrs. G. were f r i e n d l y and t a l k e d w i l l i n g l y about the questions put to them. When the 43 -w r i t e r asked Mr. C. how h i s h e a l t h was, he r e p l i e d thought-f u l l y " I manage to keep going," and then added "we w i l l j u s t hold on here as long as we can." Would They Like to Live i n the Housing P r o j e c t ? Each of the homeowners v i s i t e d was asked during the study what h i s or her opinion was w i t h reference to the West Vancouver Kiwanis' housing p r o j e c t f o r senior c i t i z e n s . Of the eleven homeowners who had seen the p r o j e c t , a l l r e p l i e d that they would l i k e to l i v e i n such a p l a c e . This was not to i n d i c a t e that they wished to move i n t o the p r o j e c t , however: ra t h e r that they thought i t would be a pleasant place to l i v e i f they d i d have to move. One couple who had not seen the p r o j e c t a l s o s a i d they would l i k e to l i v e i n such a p l a c e . Two couples who had not seen the p r o j e c t said they would not l i k e to l i v e i n such a p l a c e . In speaking about the p r o j e c t , most of the aged couples were spontaneous i n t h e i r p r a i s e of t h i s l o w - r e n t a l housing accommodation f o r older persons. One man described the p r o j e c t as "a very, very good t h i n g f o r the people." Another remarked that the i n d i v i d u a l u n i t s were a. f i n e i d e a and helped to r e t a i n one's p r i v a c y , i n which way they were "more l i k e your own home." I t seemed evident to the w r i t e r that the housing p r o j e c t had i n some way r a i s e d the morale of the couples seen, - kk -even though they l i v e d i n t h e i r own homes and had not a p p l i e d f o r the housing p r o j e c t . There seemed to be a keen aware-ness of what was happening to other older people i n the d i s t r i c t and a f e e l i n g of " t h i s could happen to us next." Perhaps they were t h i n k i n g of the time when one of them might be alone, though no questions were put about t h i s . Even though the couples seen were not themselves b e n e f i t t i n g from the housing p r o j e c t , they were glad that other older people were. One man s.aid " i f they didn't have these homes, these people would be i n some l i t t l e dingy basement room with h i g h r e n t . " They were able to share the sense of d i g n i t y which had come to others i n t h e i r age group who had secured adequate and a t t r a c t i v e housing through the p r o j e c t . They were aware of the circum-stances of other aged persons i n West Vancouver whom they knew, and others they had heard about. Some mentioned o l d e r neighbors and what had happened to them. One couple r e l a t e d that an aged neighbour, a widow, had been "taken to Van-couver" by .her daughter and that she i s now " j u s t a servant" i n her daughter's home. They would not care to l i v e that way w i t h t h e i r c h i l d r e n . Several of the homeowners had taken a r e a l i n t -r e s t in;-.watching the planning and c o n s t r u c t i o n of . the housing p r o j e c t . One mentioned that she had attended the f i r s t meet-ing when the housing p r o j e c t was discussed. She went on to - 4-55 -describe suggestions, that were made at the meeting. Although most of the aged homeowners appeared keenly i n t - : erested i n the housing p r o j e c t , a l l s a i d d e f i n i t e l y t h a t they intended to remain i n t h e i r own homes "as long as we are able."- One man said that he did not t h i n k anyone "with any sense" would give up t h e i r home and move to the p r o j e c t i f they were s t i l l able to c a r r y on i n t h e i r own home. "There would have to be a reason f o r moving." Although each decided that remaining i n "own homes" was best, on the other hand, each was g l a d to know the housing p r o j e c t e x i s t e d as a p o s s i b l e resource should they not be able to carry on as at present. A few of t h e i r r e p l i e s , when questioned about the p r o j e c t , were: "As long as. we. can manage we w i l l stay on our own." " I would ra t h e r have t h i s as long as we. can hold i t . " "We would only g i v e up our home as a l a s t r e s o r t . " ''If we had to go, we would." "We would p r e f e r to be on our own and have our own garden as long as p o s s i b l e . " A d e t a i l e d study of the aged homeowner's budget was not included i n t h i s study, but a few observations can be mentioned. The l a r g e s t s i n g l e problem mentioned by a l l couples was the problem of f i n a n c e s . Very few of the homeowners are r e c e i v i n g the maximum bonus. A h i g h per-centage have deductions f o r assets such as property. One i s - ^6 -s t i l l earning a small amount at casual labour which d i s -q u a l i f i e s him f o r the bonus, although he and h i s wife who i s handicapped are having a d i f f i c u l t time. I t is. apparent that the budget of aged homeowners would be a. s u i t a b l e subject f o r a separate study. Casual observation seems to i n d i c a t e that the higher taxes go, through increased assess-ments, the smaller the bonus received by the homeowner would be. This i s one among se v e r a l conundrums for the aged home-owner which include r i s i n g p r i c e s and the smaller r e a l value of pensions and retirement income. Yet one t h i n g that stands out, c e r t a i n l y i n West Vancouver, i s the homeowners'-determination to " c a r r y on i n my own p l a c e " under a l l kinds of adverse circumstances. I t may well, be asked, however, i s the aged home-owner being r e a l i s t i c i n t h i n k i n g of the housing p r o j e c t as a place of refuge should he be unable to ca r r y on i n h i s own home? Perhaps, r a t h e r than " r e a l i s t i c " i t should be asked: " i s he c o r r e c t l y informed?" This p o i n t bears exam-i n a t i o n . F i r s t l y , i f he should s e l l h i s home, the home-owner would thereby accumulate assets which may put him In an income bracket which would d i s q u a l i f y him f o r admission to the l o w - r e n t a l housing, p r o j e c t f o r senior c i t i z e n s . Secondly, should he q u a l i f y on income', h i s h e a l t h may not be good enough f o r him to care f o r himself i n the p r o j e c t without some form of supplementary a i d . Therefore, i t remains .a moot p o i n t whether the ideas that the homeowners - kl -h o l d — t h a t they may e v e n t u a l l y move to the housing p r o j e c t -could In f a c t be c a r r i e d out under present r e g u l a t i o n s . I t could be asked, too, when does the aged home-owner reach the p o i n t when he considers he i s unable to carry on i n h i s own home.? Prom the couples seen i n t h i s sample, i t would appear that as long as both partners are a l i v e and able to get around, they wish to remain i n t h e i r home; moreover, they would do so i n s p i t e of inconvenience and even hardship. The C.'s mentioned above would be an example. When asked i f they had heard of the housing pro-j e c t f o r senior c i t i z e n s , the C.'s s a i d they had heard of the Klwanis'- housing p r o j e c t but n e i t h e r of them had. seen i t . They d i d not seem to see i t as a p o s s i b i l i t y f o r housing f o r themselves. I t appears that when th i n g s have become as d i f f i c u l t f o r anyone as i t has. f o r the C.'s, they can only f e e l secure w i t h what they know. When asked i f they would consider moving to the Senior C i t i z e n s ' housing p r o j e c t , Mr. C. s a i d , "we w i l l j u s t h old on here as long as we can." b. Rented Housing There are some Important c o n t r a s t s i n the prob-lems and the a t t i t u d e s of the aged couples who are r e n t i n g t h e i r accommodation, judging from those who were interviewed i n West Vancouver.- Of the f o u r t e e n couples included i n the - 48 -study, f o u r couples (30 per cent) were r e n t i n g accommod-a t i o n . Included i n the " r e n t i n g " group is. one couple who has been l i v i n g w i t h a r e l a t i v e f o r three years and who had p r e v i o u s l y rented accommodation. The age d i s t r i b u t i o n i n the " r e n t i n g " group i s as f o l l o w s : one i n the age group 6^ -69, two In the age group 70-74-, and f i v e i n the age group 7^ -84. In the r e n t i n g group, the average age of the men i s 77 »4 and of the women, 72.3. Each of the couples who i s r e n t i n g t h e i r present accommodation has r e s i d e d i n West Vancouver f o r a s h o r t e r p e r i o d of time than those who own t h e i r homes. Of the four couples who are r e n t i n g , two have l i v e d i n West Van-couver between one to f o u r years and two have- l i v e d i n West Vancouver between f i v e and n i n e years. A l l but one of the couples r e n t i n g accommodation and included i n t h i s study were born in. the B r i t i s h I s l e s . A l l had resided i n Canada f o r over f o r t y - f i v e , years. The average residence i n B r i t i s h Columbia was twenty-eight years, the longest being f i f t y - f i v e years and the s h o r t e s t f i v e years. The approximate age of the s t r u c t u r e occupied by the r e n t i n g couples, and the type of accommodation, i s as f o l l o w s : - 4 9 -Type of Accommodation Approximate • age. of s t r u c t u r e One room and bathroom i n basement of converted house 10 years One room i n basement and use of remainder of house 10 years S u i t e i n commercial b u i l d i n g 2$ years Cottage ( 4 rooms) 4 0 years Most of the tenants r e f e r r e d to t h e i r accommod-a t i o n as "the only t h i n g they could f i n d . " Mr. and Mrs. D. are both over seventy years of age and came to West Vancouver to r e s i d e f i v e years ago. They rent one room and a bathroom i n the basement of a. converted house. Their rent i s f o r t y - f i v e d o l l a r s .a month which they f i n d q u i t e a hardship to pay out of t h e i r small pensions. They pay four d o l l a r s toward e l e c t r i c i t y . They have a c o a l and wood stove f o r cooking, which also keeps t h e i r quarters warm. Mr. D. gets t h e i r firewood from the beach, otherwise they s a i d they would be unable to pay the h i g h r e n t . Mrs. D. j o k i n g l y r e f e r r e d to t h e i r present abode as "the three i n one" because the k i t c h e n , bedroom, and l i v i n g - r o o m are a l l i n one. The b u i l d i n g appears In good c o n d i t i o n . The D.'s painted t h e i r room when they moved i n l a s t year, the l a n d -lady supplying the p a i n t . Another couple are Mr. and Mrs. H., who rent accommodation i n a commercial block, having r e s i d e d i n West - 5o -Vancouver f o r seven years and i n t h e i r present s u i t e f o r over one year. Both are over s e v e n t y - f i v e years of age. The s u i t e c o n s i s t s of k i t c h e n , l i v i n g - r o o m and two small "bedrooms. The b u i l d i n g i s i n a good s t a t e of r e p a i r and i s w e l l heate'd. The heat is. automatic and I s included i n the r e n t a l of s i x t y - f i v e d o l l a r s per month. E l e c t r i c i t y which i s used f o r cooking i s e x t r a . Mrs. H. f i g u r e s u t i l i t i e s come to approximately ten d o l l a r s a month. She i s very c a r e f u l . The H.'s t h i n k the rent i s "very h i g h " and much more than they can a f f o r d . The H.'s s o l d t h e i r home because i t was too b i g and they couldn't look a f t e r i t . Mr. H.'s h e a l t h i s not too good. They are hoping f o r an increase i n old age pensions. The couple who rent a house have more problems.; I t would seem, than those who rent rooms or s u i t e s . This i s the s i t u a t i o n of Mr. and Mrs. E. Both are over seventy years of age and came to West Vancouver two years ago to be near a married daughter, as Mr. E.'-s h e a l t h was not good enough to c a r r y on In the i s o l a t e d d i s t r i c t where they were l i v i n g . They now rent a four-roomed cottage which i s very o l d and has. no basement. The rent i s s i x t y d o l l a r s a month, which the E.'-s say i s ' a r e a l hardship to pay. The house i s dingy, damp and u n a t t r a c t i v e , but Mrs. E. s a i d " i t was the only place we could f i n d a f t e r three weeks of l o o k i n g . " The only .heating i s an o i l cook stove i n the - 5 1 -k i t c h e n which the E.'s keep turned down as much as p o s s i b l e i n order to conserve o i l . O i l costs approximately twelve d o l l a r s per month. The bathroom has been b u i l t on to the back of the house and i s very cold i n winter. The house appears to be one which was formerly used as a summer cot-tage, perhaps f o r t y years ago. Mrs. E. s a i d that the roof i n the u t i l i t y room and over the verandah leaks very badly. A new roof i s needed, and p a i n t i n g outside and i n , although i t i s d o u b t f u l i f I t i s worth r e p a i r i n g . The whole house presented a dreary, desolate p i c t u r e . The greatest problem f o r a l l the r e n t e r s who were included i n t h i s study was that the rent was higher than t h e i r budget would a l l o w . The f a c t that they had to pay the rent each month gave them a f e e l i n g of i n s e c u r i t y . I f they could not pay they would have to move. Two of the renters f e l t the place they were i n was only temporary u n t i l they could f i n d something at l e s s r e n t . They did not f e e l s e t t l e d . A l l were emphatic i n t h e i r wish to remain i n West Vancouver i f at a l l p o s s i b l e , however. One s u i t e had a long f l i g h t of s t a i r s l e a d i n g up to i t which the couple found to be a great burden. Garbage d i s p o s a l was al s o a d i f f i c u l t task i n t h i s p l a c e . A l l garbage had to be taken down the steps and around the b u i l d i n g to a garbage can In the back a l l e y . Poor v e n t i l -a t i o n owing to a very low c e i l i n g and no i s y c h i l d r e n - $2 -overhead were f u r t h e r problems to the couple who l i v e d i n the basement s u i t e of a converted house. Reactions to Housing P r o j e c t Three of the couples who are r e n t i n g accommodation said they were i n t e r e s t e d i n o b t a i n i n g accommodation i n the housing p r o j e c t (two of them had submitted a p p l i c a t i o n s ) . Mr. and Mrs. D. t h i n k they would be very f o r t u n a t e indeed to get i n , but mentioned that "we r e a l i z e that people who have l i v e d i n the d i s t r i c t longer than we have would have p r i o r i t y . " The D.'s s a i d i t would make •"all^the d i f f e r e n c e i n the world" to them i f they could get one of the Senior C i t i z e n homes. Mr. and Mrs. D. appeared a l e r t and w e l l able to take care of themselves p h y s i c a l l y . Another couple, the W.'s, sai d they had submitted an a p p l i c a t i o n sometime ago but presumed that the w a i t i n g l i s t of a p p l i c a n t s was long and that they would have l i t t l e chance of g e t t i n g i n . They have now more or l e s s given up the i d e a and f e e l " s e t t l e d " i n t h e i r present s u i t e , although the rent i s too h i g h f o r them. They t h i n k the housing p r o j e c t i s "a wonderful t h i n g " and wish they could have something l i k e t h a t . Conclusions The aged couples i n West Vancouver who were seen during t h i s study formed two d i s t i n c t groups. The m a j o r i t y - $3 -were homeowners, who wished to remain i n t h e i r own home; they were, ne v e r t h e l e s s , i n t e r e s t e d i n the housing p r o j e c t and thought i t was a very d e s i r a b l e and h e l p f u l scheme f o r older persons who had housing problems. So strong was the homeowner's de s i r e to remain i n h i s own home, however, that i t appeared he would go to almost any ends to remain there. The other group, which was s m a l l e r , but no l e s s s i g n i f i c a n t , was composed of couples who occupied r e n t a l accommodation. A l l i n . . a l l , the people who are r e n t i n g do not have the same f e e l i n g of s e c u r i t y i n t h e i r accommod-a t i o n , nor Is i t , i n most cases, s a t i s f a c t o r y or w i t h i n t h e i r budget. P o t e n t i a l l y , t h e r e f o r e , they are more a v a i l -able f o r u n i t s In the housing p r o j e c t . A l l of the r e n t i n g couples, when asked, thought of the accommodation i n the housing p r o j e c t as I d e a l f o r t h e i r needs. The couples who occupied t h i s r e n t a l accommodation appeared to be f a i r l y mobile. This may have been l a r g e l y due to t h e i r search f o r s a t i s f a c t o r y accommodation w i t h i n t h e i r budget, which so f a r had not been a v a i l a b l e to them; and they were continuing t h e i r search. CHAPTER 3 HOUSING NEEDS. OP SINGLE WOMEN The rented s u i t e of Mrs. S. i s by f a r the l e a s t a t t r a c t i v e when compared to the p h y s i c a l standards of the other rooms v i s i t e d . The wood frame s t r u c t u r e , b u i l t p r i o r to 1925, contains s e v e r a l small two. and three room s e l f -contained suites,, each w i t h a separate entrance. L i k e so many of the older b u i l d i n g s i n West Vancouver,, this , p l ace was intended f o r summer occupancy only. Perhaps t h i s i s one of the reasons why no hot water Is a v a i l a b l e . In a d d i t i o n to t h i s , there are no bathing f a c i l i t i e s and the t o i l e t , s i t u a t e d on the back porch, i s shared w i t h two other persons. Mrs. P., i n wishing f o r her own rooms, suggested that f o r her, the i d e a l set up would be a s e l f - c o n t a i n e d s u i t e a d j o i n i n g her daughter's home. I n ' t h i s way she would acquire the p r i v a c y she valued, yet be c l o s e enough, to her daughter and son-in-law so as not to f e e l l o n e l y . These examples are. not i s o l a t e d , and they serve to I l l u s t r a t e c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s i t u a t i o n s of women l i v i n g alone who have to f i n d t h e i r own housing accommodation. In considering•the sampled group of s i n g l e women,1 i t 1 The term " s i n g l e women" as used throughout t h i s study includes not only unmarried' women, but a l s o widows, and women-separated or div o r c e d , Le., women who r e q u i r e s i n g l e accommodation. - $$ -' became c l e a r t h a t , i n terms of housing, these women could be i d e n t i f i e d w i t h one of three groups: (G) those l i v i n g i n t h e i r own home; (D) those r e s i d i n g w i t h other.people; and .(E) persons who l i v e alone i n a rented room or s u i t e . To be designated as " i n t h e i r own homes" i t d i d not matter whether the mortgage was beginning, ending, or p a i d i n f u l l . Nor was. d i s t i n c t i o n a p p l i e d to the means- by which the home was obtained. . In some in s t a n c e s , however, sons or daughters have contributed towards the purchase of the home f o r people i n t h i s category. The m a j o r i t y of the women interviewed are not l i v i n g alone, but are r e s i d i n g w i t h f r i e n d s or r e l a t i v e s . In most of these cases i t Is. a mother who i s l i v i n g w i t h a married son or daughter; u s u a l l y she occupies a bedroom by h e r s e l f , and eats her meals w i t h the f a m i l y . Those who l i v e w i t h friend.s or r e l a t i v e s other than t h e i r own grown-up c h i l d r e n however, seem to be no l e s s a p a r t of the f a m i l y c o n s t e l l a t i o n . Some of the women who are l i v i n g alone i n rented rooms are accorded the p r i v i l e g e of being able to share other rooms In the house, whereas others are confined to the one room i n which they s i t , sleep, and cook t h e i r meals. Most of the r e n t i n g group are i n unfurnished rooms and own t h e i r own f u r n i s h i n g s . A smaller percentage e i t h e r own t h e i r f u r n i t u r e i n p a r t , or rent a complete room. ' - 56 -The d i f f e r e n c e i n the standard of l i v i n g a t t a i n e d by the women i s q u i t e n o t i c e a b l e . The reasons f o r t h i s , as revealed i n the f i n d i n g s obtained from the three groups, are to be found throughout t h i s chapter. While t h i s three-f o l d d i v i s i o n i s important, i t seemed most e f f e c t i v e to present the informat i o n gained from the in t e r v i e w s under the f o l l o w i n g headings: p h y s i c a l c o n d i t i o n s of accommoda-t i o n , housing experience, s a t i s f a c t i o n s from accommodation, budget c o n s i d e r a t i o n s , and r e a c t i o n s to other housing pos-s i b i l i t i e s . The.presentation under each of these headings d i s t i n g u i s h e s the three accommodation groups p r e v i o u s l y mentioned. P h y s i c a l Accommodation Homeowners. (Group C ) . 1 The c o n d i t i o n , s i z e , and type of home v a r i e d considerably, as did the ages of the houses. For example, one place i s a two-storey s t r u c t u r e b u i l t over t h i r t y years ago. There i s a, l a r g e l i v i n g -room, k i t c h e n , bathroom, and small storage space on the main f l o o r , and two small bedrooms u p s t a i r s . Mrs. A. l i v e s there alone despite the problems i n v o l v e d . The i n t e r i o r , although o l d , lias been kept reasonably c l e a n and i n order; however, the outside of the house i s f a s t 1 For convenience, Group A and Group B r e f e r to the categories (of married couples) d i s t i n g u i s h e d i n Chapter 2 , Groups C-E, the three categories of s i n g l e persons i n d i c a t e d on the preceding page. - 57 -becoming run-down, as t h i s woman cannot keep up the necessary r e p a i r s . A small o i l stove i n the l i v i n g - r o o m i s the main source of heat, but t h i s combined w i t h the o i l cook stove i n the k i t c h e n , i s s t i l l inadequate to heat the premises. Mrs. A. has few e l e c t r i c a l appliances and her p e r i s h a b l e food i s kept i n an ice-box. In c o n t r a s t to t h i s , another woman r e s i d e s i n a three-and-a-half roomed home which her son r e c e n t l y had b u i l t f o r her. She too, has an o i l stove i n the l i v i n g -room but I t i s adequate f o r the w e l l - I n s u l a t e d home. Most of the f u r n i t u r e belongs to her, w i t h the exception of the t e l e v i s i o n set and a few other a r t i c l e s which her grown c h i l d r e n have provided f o r her. Boarding or L i v i n g w i t h Others. (Group D). For the most p a r t , older women who are l i v i n g w i t h married sons or daughters f i n d t h e i r p h y s i c a l surroundings, quite comfortable. Most pf the f a m i l i e s are among the more recent r e s i d e n t s , and the homes tend to be l e s s than ten years o l d . This being the case, the i n t e r i o r s are clean and i n good r e p a i r , as are the e x t e r i o r s . Modern conven-iences, such as an o i l furnace, e l e c t r i c range, hotwater heater, and r e f r i g e r a t o r s , are to be found i n a l l these homes. In the examples surveyed, each woman has her own bedroom, although bath and t o i l e t f a c i l i t i e s as w e l l as - 8^ -the other rooms i n the house, are shared w i t h the e n t i r e f a m i l y . Sharing i s thought to be a s u i t a b l e arrangement, and no one complained of cramped quart e r s . Not a l l the women i n t h i s group l i v e w i t h t h e i r married grown-up c h i l d r e n . Mrs. E., f o r i n s t a n c e , t y p i f i e s another s i t u a t i o n . L i v i n g w i t h a working unmarried daughter i n a rented' basement s u i t e , she f e e l s i t i s crowded, yet has not been able to f i n d another p l a c e . Their only source of heat, other than the k i t c h e n .stove, i s a l i v i n g - r o o m f i r e -p l a c e . Mrs. E. f i n d s that i n the winter she must have a stock of wood p i l e d i n the l i v i n g - r o o m i n order to keep the f i r e burning continuously. The home i t s e l f i s s i t u a t e d on a s l i g h t k n o l l , and t h i s i s enough to r e s t r i c t Mrs. E. from going out, as she has a heart c o n d i t i o n . One of the examples i n the same category i s the oldest home i n the sample, occupied by a s i n g l e woman and her widowed s i s t e r . The house was constructed over t h i r t y years, ago as a. summer cbttage. There i s no bath or shower, and. the heat from the o i l stove i n the l i v i n g - r o o m does not reach the bedroom. F o r t u n a t e l y , the cottage has been kept i n f a i r l y good r e p a i r , so that f o r these two women the p h y s i c a l c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of t h e i r "home" pose no r e a l problems. L i v i n g Alone i n Rented Rooms. (Group E ) . The main p o r t i o n of the women i n rented rooms are i n premises which - 59 -were b u i l t t h i r t y or more years ago. Two of the women who were interviewed l i v e i n the .Senior C i t i z e n s ' Home, which was b u i l t over t h i r t y years ago as a p r i v a t e residence but was converted by the m u n i c i p a l i t y , s h o r t l y a f t e r the l a s t world war, to accommodate some of t h e i r e l d e r l y c i t i z e n s who needed low-rent housing. The b u i l d i n g i s o l d , run-down, and i n need of r e p a i r . F i v e adults l i v e on the main f l o o r , and f o u r share one bath and t o i l e t . The s i n g l e b e d - s i t t i n g rooms i n which each tenant does h i s or her cooking, seem to be s a t i s f a c t o r y f o r those who were interviewed. At present, there i s an inadequate supply of hot water, but plans have been made to remedy t h i s . The cooking u t i l i t i e s vary f o r each tenant, depending on what they can a f f o r d i n the way of a stove or h o t - p l a t e . A l l the rooms are ade-quately heated, and the "Home" i s located two blocks from a shopping distri.ct--alth.ough a steep h i l l must be climbed on the r e t u r n journey. Mrs. S.'s rooms c o n s i s t of a small k i t c h e n , a b e d - s i t t i n g room, and a sun porch. In s p i t e of the obvious d e t e r i o r a t i o n t a k i n g place throughout the e n t i r e b u i l d i n g , she has succeeded i n keeping her rooms b r i g h t and cherry. A wood-coal stove i n the k i t c h e n must be kept burning at a l l times as t h i s i s her only source of heat. P e r i s h a b l e f o o d s t u f f s are kept In a cooler on the back porch, which also serves as the entrance to Mrs. S.'s s u i t e . - 60 -In contrast to older residences i s the newer home in which Mrs. R. has rented a be d - s i t t i n g room. "This bungalow-style house was b u i l t i n 19$0 as a single family dwelling. It i s of wood and stucco siding and the l o t i s landscaped. Both the i n t e r i o r and outside of the house have been kept clean .and no repairs are needed. Although Mrs. R. rents but one room, she has been invited to have f u l l use of the whole house. She has f u l l use-of the modern kitchen f a c i l i t i e s and may watch t e l e v i s i o n or entertain i n the living-room when she pleases. Housing Experience Homeowners. .(Group C) . The length of time that people of t h i s group have been i n the i r present home does not exceed ten years. In addition, most of the women have l i v e d mainly i n single family dwellings regardless of whether they were the owners. Their reasons f o r moving from previous places have varied considerably. One woman soid her own home in Vancouver because "the agents kept bothering me," and f i n a l l y agreed that she needed a smaller home. She chose West Vancouver because i t was a "nice community away from the big c i t y . " On the other hand, Mrs. D. l i v e d with her daughter and son-in-law, f o r many years after the death of her husband, but eventually decided she .wanted a small place of her own as " things seemed to be getting too crowded." - 61 -These women, l i v i n g i n t h e i r own homes, a l l claimed! t h e y were t h e r e out o f c h o i c e , not n e c e s s i t y ; y e t some i n d i c a t e d t h a t t h e y would c o n s i d e r moving i f something e l s e l o o k e d more a t t r a c t i v e t o them. However, i t d i d not seem as though t h e y had thought much about the type o f accom-modation t h a t would be of i n t e r e s t t o them. There were o t h e r s who would n ot c o n s i d e r l i v i n g any p l a c e o t h e r t h a n t h e i r p r e s e n t home, and wanted t o " h o l d on as. l o n g as pos-s i b l e . " B o a r d i n g o r L i v i n g w i t h O t h e r s . (Group D ). C o n t r a r y t o the former group, who f e e l i t i s by c h o i c e t h a t t h e y remain where t h e y a r e , a l l t h e women who l i v e i n t h e i r c h i l d r e n ' s homes b e l i e v e t h a t t h e y do so out of n e c e s s i t y . Only t h o s e who share r e n t e d s u i t e s w i t h f r i e n d s o r r e l a t i v e s c l a i m t h i s arrangement t o be the r e s u l t of t h e i r c h o i c e . Thus, i t appears t h a t the women who l i v e i n t h e i r c h i l d r e n ' s homes would r a t h e r be on t h e i r own; a c t u a l l y , when asked how and where t h e y would l i k e t o l i v e , most of them answered, "a p l a c e of my own." None of these women i n d i c a t e d a d e s i r e t o share accommodation w i t h f r i e n d s o r r e l a t i v e s . One woman d i d not care how s m a l l a p l a c e she had t o l i v e i n " j u s t so l o n g as she was independent of o t h e r s . " The word "own" was brought i n t o d e s c r i p t i o n s of h o u s i n g arrangements v e r y o f t e n , but the i m p l i c a t i o n of the word was a p l a c e where one d i d not have t o s h a r e , r a t h e r - 62 -than "ownership." Because of i l l - h e a l t h , another woman had come to accept the f a c t that she could not l i v e alone, but wanted to move from her daughter's home because she d i s l i k e d the l o c a t i o n . The house was s i t u a t e d i n a f a i r l y new r e s i d e n -t i a l area, at a considerable distance from a bus l i n e and shopping centre. For reasons of h e a l t h , t h i s woman was unable to go f o r even a short walk because of the steep h i l l s i n the v i c i n i t y . . . The women i n t h i s group have been i n t h e i r present places on the average about f i v e y ears, but w i t h a range from one to twelve years. The type of residence these women p r e v i o u s l y maintained, and w i t h whom, seems to be s i m i l a r i n the m a j o r i t y of cases. Some had l i v e d w i t h other c h i l d r e n while some had moved about w i t h one f a m i l y . A few of these women had at one time or another l i v e d i n rented rooms but while t h e i r husbands were a l i v e they l i v e d " i n t h e i r own home," as d i d the m a j o r i t y i n t h i s group. There were a number of reasons given f o r moving about and these depended on such things as poor accommodation, h e a l t h f a c t o r s , bud-get c o n s i d e r a t i o n s , and c h i l d r e n moving away. As between l i v i n g w i t h e i t h e r married sons or married daughters, the l a t t e r were found to be more evident. L i v i n g Alone i n Rented Rooms. (Group E ) . Among those l i v i n g alone, few seemed to have any close r e l a t i v e s - 63 -i n the m u n i c i p a l i t y . Compared, w i t h Group D, these women, on the average, remained i n the same place f o r a longer period of time. S i m i l a r l y , they described t h e i r being where they were as the r e s u l t of choice. P r i o r l i v i n g accommod-a t i o n f o r this, group of women consisted mostly of movement "from one rented room to another," which, f o r the widowed, dated back to the time of t h e i r husband? s. death. Whereas only one woman had moved more than f o u r times i n the past ten y e ars, most of the others averaged ten years, at the same p l a c e . The m a j o r i t y of the women wished to remain where they were, but Intimated that i f more s u i t a b l e rooms were a v a i l a b l e i n the area they might be i n t e r e s t e d i n moving. On the other hand, some interviewees- i n d i c a t e d that they would move only i f circumstances changed so as to f o r c e them to take another p l a c e . Those who had changed r e s i -dence w i t h i n the past ten years gave v a r i o u s reasons which i n d i c a t e d that i t was not from choice. Pour examples were: " l i v i n g w i t h my daughter,, but i t was too crowded"; "the doctor made me move from a basement s u i t e " ; " i t was n i c e , but there were cheaper p l a c e s " ; and "the house was sold from under me." S a t i s f a c t i o n s from Accommodation The people who are the subjects of t h i s study had various ways of i n t i m a t i n g t h e i r degree of s a t i s f a c t i o n In - 6k -t h e i r accommodation. S a t i s f a c t i o n s seem to stem, not from one f e a t u r e of housing, but from a combination of f a c t o r s which reconcile, them to the l e s s d e s i r a b l e aspects of t h e i r present accommodation. The d i f f e r e n c e i n the type of l i v i n g experience i s the main reason f o r the d i s s i m i l a r i t y i n what these women consider to be s a t i s f a c t o r y f o r t h e i r needs. Since housing plays such an important r o l e i n the l i v e s of senior c i t i z e n s , and because i t a f f e c t s t h e i r t o t a l outlook on l i f e , i t i s important f o r the purposes of t h i s study to describe the s u b j e c t i v e r e a c t i o n s of some of these people. To best i l l u s t r a t e whether present housing c o n t r i b u t e s to a health y and c h e e r f u l outlook, s e v e r a l view-p o i n t s are presented under the headings that have thus f a r been used. Homeowners. (Group C). Mrs. A., age seventy-one, has been i n her own home f o r j u s t over nine years. The house i s w e l l over t h i r t y years o l d and the outside needs r e p a i r s . The i n t e r i o r , although o l d , has been kept clean and cozy. This woman t h i n k s h e r s e l f f o r t u n a t e because the mortgage was p a i d In f u l l p r i o r to her husband's death f i v e years ago. She would l i k e to have a small r e f r i g e r a t o r , but suspects that she w i l l never be able t o a f f o r d t h i s l u x u r y . Poor heating f a c i l i t i e s and inadequate i n s u l a t i o n are r e s p o n s i b l e f o r the house being cold and damp during the winter months. In s p i t e of the c o l d , worry over needed r e p a i r s , - 6$ -and the l a c k of proper food-storage f a c i l i t i e s , Mrs. A. derives great pleasure from her home. Her l i f e i n t e r e s t s are books, music, and the numerous f r i e n d s who often con-gregate i n her l a r g e l i v i n g - r o o m . She plays the piano, which she f e e l s i s an important p a r t of her l i f e , and only by remaining i n her own home can she be assured of con-t i n u i n g t h i s and other p u r s u i t s . Mrs. C. i s also a homeowner, but one who f i n d s i t d i f f i c u l t to solve a l l the problems connected w i t h home ownership. She i s somewhat ambivalent about g i v i n g up her pla c e , as she does not know what her a t t i t u d e would be i f she l i v e d i n a rented room or s u i t e . Although her home creates problems f o r her, she looks upon them as a challenge and therefore has not become discouraged. Boarding or L i v i n g with Others. (Group B ) . The women of t h i s group who l i v e i n t h e i r c h i l d r e n ' s homes a l l expressed d i s a p p r o v a l w i t h t h i s arrangement. Although the p h y s i c a l f a c i l i t i e s a v a i l a b l e to them are f a r b e t t e r than f o r the women l i v i n g alone, e i t h e r i n rented rooms or t h e i r own homes', these women seem to gain fewer s a t i s f a c t i o n s from t h e i r environment and housing. Mrs. L. serves .as an example: she i s seventy years o l d and has been w i t h her daughter and son-in-law f o r f i v e years. Their bungalow-style home Is equipped w i t h a l l the modern conveniences and i s s i t u a t e d i n an upper-- 66 -m i d d l e - c l a s s neighbourhood. This woman occupies her own bedroom and considers h e r s e l f to be comfortable. However, the s a t i s f a c t i o n s that she once gained from t h i s home are di m i n i s h i n g . She no longer t h i n k s of h e r s e l f as being h e l p f u l and her independence i s gone. As long as she remains i n t h i s , s e t t i n g , her need to be u s e f u l and have a measure of independence w i l l continue to be unmet. Mrs. L. t y p i f i e s many women who are l i v i n g w i t h married c h i l d r e n out of n e c e s s i t y , but are g r a d u a l l y becom-in g d i s g r u n t l e d and t h i n k , o f themselves as burdens to t h e i r c h i l d r e n . Mrs. M. has al s o been w i t h her married daughter f o r f i v e years, but would r a t h e r have a small place of her own. She would l i k e to have some of her f r i e n d s c a l l f o r a v i s i t , but she f e e l s t h a t t h i s would be an i n t r u s i o n on her daughter's f a m i l y . In s i m i l a r circumstances i s Mrs. P., who has always l i v e d w i t h her eldest, daughter and continues to do so subsequent to her daughter's recent marriage. Because t h i s woman has become so dependent and emotionally t i e d to her daughter, she i s now having great d i f f i c u l t y In "shar-i n g " her w i t h the son-in-law. Mrs. P. has never had to struggle on her own, and i t i s d o u b t f u l whether she could f u n c t i o n by h e r s e l f . Nevertheless, the home s i t u a t i o n i s becoming i n c r e a s i n g l y worse and adds to her d a i l y d i s s a t i s -f a c t i o n s . In t u r n , i t would seem that she i s c r e a t i n g d i s -harmony In the home. Mrs. P. has some i n s i g h t i n t o her - 67 -dilemma, and b e l i e v e s that her problem might be eased i f she were to have a s e l f - c o n t a i n e d s u i t e a d j o i n i n g her daughter's home. In c o n t r a s t to the women l i v i n g w i t h married c h i l d r e n from n e c e s s i t y , are those who l i v e w i t h f r i e n d s or r e l a t i v e s because they chose to do so. Although they are considerably l e s s i n numbers, t h e i r s a t i s f a c t i o n s tend to be greater. One such person i s Mrs. W., who i s l i v i n g w i t h and cari n g f o r a l i f e - l o n g f r i e n d who has taken i l l . She r e c e i v e s no f i n a n c i a l compensation f o r her e f f o r t , but t h i s does not matter as she knows that she i s needed, and her own basic needs are being cared f o r . Mrs. N. i s another woman whose present housing c o n t r i b u t e s d i r e c t l y to her contentedness. She, together with her s i s t e r , have been l i v i n g i n a summer cottage f o r almost twelve years. They have both enjoyed working i n the garden and keeping the premises i n good c o n d i t i o n . However, because t h i s cottage i s being s o l d , they have to f i n d another. For the rent they can a f f o r d , i t i s doubt-f u l whether they w i l l be able to f i n d a s i m i l a r place t h a t w i l l continue to give them the s a t i s f a c t i o n s derived from t h e i r present home. L i v i n g Alone i n Rented Rooms. (Group E ) . The women who rent u n i t s and l i v e alone seem t o be l e s s c r i t i c a l about t h e i r rooms than any other group, r e g a r d l e s s of the - 68 -hardships they endure. F o r Mrs. S., the most important f e a t u r e of her small s u i t e i s that i t overlooks the harbour entrance and the F i r s t Narrows. "As long as I can look out over the water," she maintains, " I am never bored." During the s e v e r a l years of her occupancy i n t h i s s u i t e , she has become accustomed to being without hot water, j u s t as she accepts not having bathing f a c i l i t i e s and having to share the t o i l e t on the porch w i t h two other people. Because her h e a l t h and l i m i t e d budget r e s t r i c t her a c t i v i t i e s , the few pleasures, she does have are the r e s u l t of being c l o s e to the beach. She has rented the same rooms f o r the past f i f t e e n years, and although she i s o ften i n p a i n from a r t h r i t i s , she s t i l l maintains a happy outlook which Is d i r e c t l y a t t r i b u t a b l e t o s a t i s -f a c t i o n s gained from her "home." Mrs. V. has a l s o had a long tenure of residence i n her rented three-room cottage. She came to West Vancouver f r om A l b e r t a In 19l-|-0 and s e t t l e d d i r e c t l y i n t o her present place w i t h her husband and daughter. The husband has since passed on and the daughter i s married. The cottage has been kept i n e x c e l l e n t c o n d i t i o n and Mrs. V. enjoys gardening and doing odd jobs about the p l a c e . By doing these t h i n g s , Mrs. V. has persuaded her l a n d l o r d to keep the rent w i t h i n her means. This, cottage i s a great source of pleasure to Mrs. V. and unless i l l - 69 -health, or increased rent f o r c e s her to leave, she w i l l remain here . Two of the women interviewed rented separate rooms i n the same home. For Mrs. P., who has .been there s i x years, the room has become "her p l a c e . " She does not mind sharing the bathroom nor does i t matter to her when there i s not enough hot water. .She considers i t her good fortune to be able to have the room. In contrast to her i s Mrs. 0., who spoke out s t r o n g l y against having to share bathroom f a c i l i t i e s . She was q u i t e opposed to t h i s : to her, "having my own bathroom" was one of the most important c o n s i d e r a t i o n s i n housing. Mrs. 0." also thought that her room should be redecorated, and she d i d not l i k e running out of hot water. In a l l , t h i s woman enumerated s e v e r a l complaints connected w i t h her l i v i n g arrangements, but her tone and manner did not i n d i c a t e malice. I t would appear as though Mrs. 0. would l i k e to have another room; although i t i s d o u b t f u l , i n s p i t e of a l l her grievances, that she w i l l look f o r another p l a c e . She has expressed discontent many times over, but i n the eight years of residence she has come to a s s o c i a t e s e c u r i t y w i t h her f a m i l i a r surroundings.. Budget Considerations As the m a j o r i t y of those interviewed f o r t h i s study are r e c i p i e n t s of e i t h e r o l d age a s s i s t a n c e or old - 70 -age s e c u r i t y b e n e f i t w i t h the p r o v i n c i a l bonus, no great d i f f e r e n c e was found i n t h e i r monthly income from a l l sources. Pew women who were not i n r e c e i p t of government ai d had an income i n excess of the s i x t y d o l l a r maximum provided to most of those r e c e i v i n g the bonus. However, there i s a considerable d i s p a r i t y i n l i v i n g standards, among these people. I t i s t r u e that some women are b e t t e r f i n a n c i a l , managers than others, but the d i f f e r e n c e i n standards amounted to f a r more than the f i v e or ten d o l l a r s a month that a f r u g a l person might save f o r l u x u r y Items. Accounting f o r t h i s d i f f e r e n c e was the f a c t t h a t many women were g a i n i n g e x t r a b e n e f i t s , other than cash, from f r i e n d s and r e l a t i v e s . 1 Homeowners. (Group C). With ai d from t h e i r married c h i l d r e n , the women i n t h e i r own homes have few f i n a n c i a l d i f f i c u l t i e s . This a s s i s t a n c e seems to manifest i t s e l f i n many ways. In some in s t a n c e s , sons or daughters assume r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r the mortgage and taxes on the home; or they may pay f o r the cost of e x t r a r e p a i r s . M a t e r i a l g i f t s , such as f u r n i t u r e , appliances, or t e l e -v i s i o n s e t s , are other means by which some women are helped. 1 I t Is not inconceivable that some women are not paying room and board while l i v i n g with t h e i r c h i l d r e n , even though they are on some form of government a s s i s t a n c e . This i s a d i f f i c u l t f a c t to e s t a b l i s h , even though by law (under the Old Age As s i s t a n c e Act) there i s a minimum amount that the r e c i p i e n t must be paying f o r sustenance i n order to gain the f u l l a s s i s t a n c e . - 71 -The women who are not "helped" i n t h i s way are g r a t e f u l to o u t s i d e r s and s e r v i c e clubs f o r the " e x t r a s " they r e c e i v e . Earning ten or f i f t e e n d o l l a r s a month by b a b y - s i t t i n g may be the amount needed to keep from a f i n a n c i a l c r i s i s , f o r , by i t s e l f , government a s s i s t a n c e does not coyer the costs of being i n t h e i r own homes. Mrs. A. could not manage on her pension of f i f t y - f i v e d o l l a r s per month and r e l i e s on the a d d i t i o n a l income she earns to defray expenses. When she applied f o r old age a s s i s t a n c e , she had r e c e n t l y sold some property to help pay f o r her present t h i r t y - y e a r - o l d home, and was there f o r e not e n t i t l e d to a f u l l bonus. Should she f i n d h e r s e l f incapable of earning a few d o l l a r s each month, she would lose her home. Mrs. B.. , who does not r e c e i v e a pension, works part-time by l o o k i n g a f t e r c h i l d r e n . In a d d i t i o n to t h i s , she has rented a room to a boarder and from these two sources she i s able to meet her l i v i n g expenses. Because these women have been i n t h e i r own homes f o r some time now, and c a l c u l a t e t h e i r expenses on t h i s b a s i s , none were able to give a d e f i n i t e f i g u r e which they thought they could pay f o r a f u r n i s h e d or unfurnished s u i t e . Boarding or L i v i n g w i t h Others. (Group D). The arrange-ments f o r rent sometimes include board, though they are d i f f e r e n t i n most instances f o r the women i n .Group D. - 7 2 -Among the women i n t h i s group who l i v e d w i t h t h e i r married' c h i l d r e n , some paid nothing towards t h e i r maintenance, regardless of income, whereas a few w i l l i n g l y c o n t r i b u t e d most of t h e i r income. The m a j o r i t y of the women pa i d between ten and f o r t y d o l l a r s w i t h v a r i a t i o n s as t o the purchasing of food. There was but a small d i f f e r e n c e i n the average monthly income of these women, as most of them were i n r e c e i p t of government ass i s t a n c e and were granted the maximum amount. Mrs. L. re c e i v e s the f u l l s i x t y d o l l a r s , but from t h i s amount pays no room or board. In s p i t e of t h i s , she would l i k e to have a place of her own and i s w i l l i n g to pay up to twenty-five d o l l a r s f o r an unfurnished s u i t e . With the money she saves by having f r e e board, she c o n t r i -butes to the care of her c h i l d who i s i n an i n s t i t u t i o n f o r the mentally i l l . Should she be able to secure a place of her own, these c o n t r i b u t i o n s could not be continued. A l s o r e c e i v i n g s i x t y d o l l a r s i s Mrs. J . , who has a s u i t e i n her son's basement. Although she pays no r e n t , Mrs. J . financed the b u i l d i n g of the rooms she now occupies. Prom her income she i s not able to save much as. she must pay f o r her telephone and e l e c t r i c i t y i n a d d i t i o n t o her ' own food. She too would l i k e to have a s u i t e i n which she could have more freedom, and she is. w i l l i n g to pay up to twenty-six d o l l a r s f o r such a p l a c e . So f a r , she has been - 73 -unable to locate rooms, that she considers " h a l f decent" f o r the amount she can a f f o r d . Mrs. ¥. has. no income but i s given f r e e room and board as compensation f o r l o o k i n g a f t e r a s i c k f r i e n d . Should t h i s f r i e n d d i e , Mrs. ¥. would f i n d h e r s e l f i n a d i f f i c u l t f i n a n c i a l p o s i t i o n . I t might be p o s s i b l e f o r her to work at l i g h t housework, but because of her age i t i s improbable that she could continue such work f o r any length of time. She appears to be e l i g i b l e f o r government a s s i s t a n c e , but refuses to apply u n t i l she "can no longer earn." Should Mrs. ¥. have to f i n d a room of her own, i t would have to be of a f a r lower standard than the present accommodation i n her f r i e n d ' s home wit h which she has grown f a m i l i a r . L i v i n g Alone i n Rented Rooms. (Group E). The ' rent paid by the women In t h i s category showed a wide - v a r i a t i o n which seemed to depend on t h e i r income. Although the m a j o r i t y were r e c e i v i n g f u l l a s s i s t a n c e , the few who were not, managed to supplement any f i n a n c i a l a i d given to them by r e l a t i v e s , by doing part-time work. The ol d e r women who were unable to work found i t necessary to r e l y e n t i r e l y on t h e i r monthly s i x t y d o l l a r s . At the same time, t h i s group of women, by•. comparison w i t h a l l the women i n t e r -viewed, were found to have the lowest standard of accommod-a t i o n . - Ik -One woman paid s i x t y - f i v e d o l l a r s f o r her s u i t e of rooms. This was p o s s i b l e as she earned approximately that amount each month by working p a r t - t i m e . In a d d i t i o n to t h i s , she rec e i v e s superannuation of s i x t y - f i v e d o l l a r s . Mrs. U. al s o pays hig h r e n t , but i s w i l l i n g to s a c r i f i c e on other t h i n g s i n order to keep her rented cottage. She has no other income than her s i x t y d o l l a r s pension. Mrs. Q. has no f i n a n c i a l d i f f i c u l t i e s as a r e s u l t of having a supplementary Income t o t a l l i n g f i f t y d o l l a r s . As she i s over seventy years of age, she a l s o r e c e i v e s the old age s e c u r i t y b e n e f i t . At present she i s . paying r e n t of t h i r t y d o l l a r s . At the end of t h i s year she w i l l no longer r e c e i v e this, supplementary income and i s therefore p l a n n i n g to apply f o r the p r o v i n c i a l bonus. Instead of her bed-s i t t i n g room, she would r a t h e r have a two-room s u i t e . She doubts t h i s i s p o s s i b l e because of the income reductions she has to f a c e . She al s o has doubts as to whether an income reduced to s i x t y d o l l a r s a month w i l l a llow her to continue r e n t i n g at t h i r t y d o l l a r s . A l l the women In the r e n t i n g group had a more r e a l i s t i c p i c t u r e of the re n t e d - s u i t e s i t u a t i o n than the others, and were able to be s p e c i f i c In g i v i n g the amount they could a f f o r d f o r f u r n i s h e d or unfurnished rooms. - 7 5 -Those who were paying rent of under twenty-five d o l l a r s seemed to t h i n k that they would be able to pay up to that amount, and would be w i l l i n g to do so i f the rooms a v a i l -able were of a b e t t e r c a l i b r e than the ones they now occupied. Mrs. R., who b a b y - s i t s f o r an e x t r a ten or f i f -teen d o l l a r s a month, thought that she could spend as much as f o r t y d o l l a r s from her income on r e n t ; but t h i s was most e x c e p t i o n a l . Of those who were paying over twenty-f i v e d o l l a r s on r e n t , most stated t h e i r present r e n t a l charge was the maximum they could a f f o r d . Senior. Citizens.' Housing P r o j e c t In approaching s i n g l e women as to what are t h e i r r e a c t i o n s regarding l i v i n g i n such a housing p r o j e c t , three major issues must be considered. F i r s t of a l l , do these women wish to l i v e by themselves? Secondly, what are t h e i r present f a c i l i t i e s ? L a s t l y , there are budgetary matters to be considered. Each woman, i n g i v i n g her opin-ion as to whether or not she de s i r e d to l i v e i n the Kiwanis' P r o j e c t r e f l e c t e d on the importance she places on each of these three f a c t o r s . Some of the women, indeed, had at one time or another a p p l i e d f o r a s i n g l e s u i t e , but f o r various reasons were not among those chosen f o r occupancy. A few women expressed misgivings about not being accepted, whereas others looked forward o p t i m i s t i c a l l y to the p o s s i b i l i t y that they would be admitted at a f u t u r e date. - 76 -I t was the w r i t e r ' s f e e l i n g that during some of the i n t e r v i e w s the women tended to be somewhat cautious' while t a l k i n g about housing p r o j e c t s . Perhaps they b e l -ieved that any negative r e a c t i o n s expressed on t h e i r p a r t would bar them from residence i n such a program. I n any event, I t was necessary i n some instances', to depart from using the questionnaire and to stimulate an open d i s c u s -s i o n . From t h i s " f r e e d i s c u s s i o n " came the sincere expressions that are summarized here. To begin w i t h , there was only one person i n -the e n t i r e study who was not aware that there was a housing p r o j e c t i n the m u n i c i p a l i t y . A f t e r the p r o j e c t was explained to her, she became e n t h u s i a s t i c and wished to. apply, " i f only to be on the w a i t i n g l i s t . " The r e s t of the women had heard or read about the program; many of them had seen the a c t u a l p r o j e c t , although only a few had been i n s i d e a s u i t e or cottage. Even though only a few were f a m i l i a r with some of the present r e s i d e n t s i n the p r o j e c t and had t a l k e d to them about the f a c i l i t i e s , most of the women were q u i t e knowledgeable about a l l the aspects of t h i s development. Homeowners. (Group C). Only one woman i n Group C stated emphatically that she d i d not want to l i v e among older people i n a housing scheme. Her concept of such a place was that those who l i v e d there "belonged to a lower - 77 -c l a s s of people" than those w i t h whom she had been used to a s s o c i a t i n g . She had no o b j e c t i o n that such a place was i n existence and thought that i t was very good f o r those who needed the help. But i t was not a resource f o r her. No one s.eemed to t h i n k that at present there are too many older people i n the one p l a c e ; and no one found open f a u l t w i t h the p r o j e c t . One woman considered that f o r her the rent was a l i t t l e h i g h , and she wondered i f she could a f f o r d such .a "l u x u r y . " Mrs. C. admitted that i f she was o f f e r e d a s u i t e i t would probably permit her to give up her present home, as " i t was too much work f o r her." Other women i n t h i s group, however, saw the p r o j e c t mainly as a place to go only i f and when they could not manage t h e i r own homes. Boarding or L i v i n g with Others. (Group D.) . The reasons stated or i m p l i e d by members of Group D who said they would not l i k e to l i v e i n the p r o j e c t were d i f f e r e n t i n every case. '"Mrs. K., f o r example, i s of East European b i r t h and a l l her l i f e has been spent among people w i t h a s i m i l a r r a c i a l background. She even f e e l s estranged i n her own daughter's home because over the years they have not seen much of each other. F o r t h i s and other reasons, Mrs. K . wants desperately to "move back w i t h her f r i e n d s . " Because of her strong c u l t u r a l t i e s , and her desir e not to l i v e alone, t h i s woman would f i n d i t d i f f i c u l t - 78 -to adjust to the new environment such as that created, by entering the housing development. Mrs. M., on the other hand, could not give s p e c i f i c reasons f o r not wanting to l i v e i n a p r o j e c t s u i t e , but i t appeared as though she was so emotionally t i e d to her daughter that she could not l i v e by h e r s e l f . She has been l i v i n g w i t h her daughter and son-in-law since the death of her husband; she f e e l s her l o s s of independence, but t h i s i s f a r l e s s f r i g h t e n i n g than having to l i v e alone i r r e s p e c t i v e of how. h i g h the p h y s i c a l standards are. Having to say "no" f o r medical reasons was' Mrs. H., who l i v e s w i t h her son. At present she i s dependent upon him because of her i l l n e s s , and needs someone wi t h her at a l l times. I f she can be cured, there i s a p o s s i b i l i t y t hat she would l i k e to be i n the p r o j e c t . She sees low-cost housing as a n e c e s s i t y , but maintains that the b u i l d i n g of these developments should be scattered throughout.the community and not be on a l a r g e - s c a l e base. Mrs. E., who l i v e s w i t h her unmarried daughter i n a rented s u i t e , would consider moving i n t o a p r o j e c t only i f i t were small enough so as to be p a r t of a normal neighbourhood. She•is not e n t i r e l y f a m i l i a r w i t h housing p r o j e c t s and questions whether she would lose her indepen-dence by moving to a low-rent s u i t e . Her concern over being i n a normal neighbourhood stems from the f a c t that - 79 -she aloes not .have a h i g h regard f o r older people and f i n d s i t d i f f i c u l t to accept t h e i r inadequacies. Both Mrs. G-. and Mrs. L. l i v e w i t h t h e i r married c h i l d r e n , but each would r a t h e r have a place of her own. Mrs. L. ap p l i e d f o r a p r o j e c t s u i t e two years ago; but, because she was l i v i n g w i t h her f a m i l y , i t was assumed th a t her needs were not as great as others who had no one i n the community to help them. When .she f i r s t heard the su i t e s were assigned to others, she was discouraged and somewhat b i t t e r . However, she has since been able to accept her " r e j e c t i o n " and i s understanding of the Hous-ing S o c i e t y ' s d e c i s i o n . I f a s u i t e were to become vacant and a v a i l a b l e to her she would accept i t r e a d i l y . Mrs. G-. a l s o i n q u i r e d about the p r o j e c t , but was discouraged from making a p p l i c a t i o n because there was such a large number already on the w a i t i n g l i s t . She would accept tenancy i f i t was of f e r e d to her. L i v i n g Alone i n Rented Rooms. (Group E ) . Only one woman i n Group E maintains t h a t she would not l i k e to l i v e i n a housing development designed e s p e c i a l l y f o r older f o l k . She i s able to;work part-time to supplement her superannuation and so i s considerably more independent, f i n a n c i a l l y , than most of the other women. Her main reason f o r not d e s i r i n g a s u i t e i s that there are too many older people i n one p l a c e . She does, however, b e l i e v e the idea of - 80 -a senior c i t i z e n ' s 1 housing p r o j e c t Is one s o l u t i o n f o r those who need housing and do not mind being "around w i t h older people" a l l the time. Because most of the women i n Group E are s a t i s -f i e d w i t h t h e i r accommodation, they do not want to move to the West Vancouver p r o j e c t at the present time. Mrs. Q., who i s seventy-nine years of age, has l i v e d i n the same room f o r e i g h t years; although she complains about her l i v i n g arrangements, she chose to remain there when, l a s t year, a p r o j e c t s u i t e was o f f e r e d to her. However, once again she i s t a l k i n g about moving and t h i n k s that she . i s ; now ready to "give t h i s p l ace up" i f she could acquire a s u i t e . The women who have been i n rooms and cottages f o r some time, and have come to t h i n k of these rented places, as t h e i r "own," were of the same opinion as many of those who were i n t h e i r own homes; that i s , they wanted to remain there as long as they were able, and then they would l i k e to move i n t o a subsidized s u i t e . I t seemed to give them a sense of s e c u r i t y i n t h i n k i n g that there was a p r o j e c t s p e c i f i c a l l y f o r o l d e r people i f the time came when they had no other place to go. Pref e r r e d C h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of Housing In order to obtain a r e a c t i o n from the women as, to the important aspects of housing, a l i s t of housing - 8 1 -f e a t u r e s was presented, to them and they i n d i c a t e d which item's were more important than others. Although this, was an experiment, and the r e s u l t s Cannot be taken as . c o n c l u s i v e , the f i n d i n g s may be u s e f u l i n f u r t h e r s t u d i e s of t h i s n a t u r e . 1 The women c l e a r l y i n d i c a t e d that warmth and low rent are the outstanding important fe a t u r e s to them i n choosing accommodation. The l e a s t e s s e n t i a l f a c t o r s are that a place has a spare bedroom or should be near a s o c i a l meeting p l a c e . This, l a t t e r might w e l l be changed i f i t could be f u r t h e r discussed and i n t e r p r e t e d . Being near a movie house, and having accommodation to share w i t h a f r i e n d were also given few "vote's." To have a p r i v a t e place that i s clean and quiet Is the c l e a r wish of most of the women. A few thought i t was important to have a place where they could e n t e r t a i n t h e i r f r i e n d s , but the m a j o r i t y were not i n t e r e s t e d i n large rooms s p e c i f i c a l l y f o r t h i s purpose. A small garden was thought to be " n i c e , " but most of the women f e l t that they were unable to look a f t e r something of that nature. 1 The c h e c k - l i s t device assumes ample time i s a v a i l a b l e , and that the questions, can be addressed to the person In w r i t i n g or mechanical f a s h i o n . I t s purpose i s as. much to stimulate t h i n k i n g and r a i s e many aspects of the subject, as to get q u a n t i t a t i v e response. Some of the f e a t u r e s included f o r "votes" are placed i n d e l i b e r a t e l y even though they may not be important as i n some cases, (e.g. "church") they are vague. I t was noted f o r the couples who had been i n t h e i r own places, f o r a number of years and had no thought of moving, that the c h e c k - l i s t had l i t t l e meaning. - to f o l l o w page 8 l -Table 1 . Housing Preferences Expressed by Older Women How Important?: Items Very F a i r l y Not Has few or no s t a i r s 7 $ k Has l a r g e , a i r y rooms k 7 k Windows with a good view 6 7 k Clean, and easy to clean 9 k — Modern, up-to-date 1 7 Is warm i n winter 13 2 -Has a spare bedroom - 2 'io Has storage space 3 k 2 A small garden l 8 2 Workshop f o r hobbies - 1 1 A place to s i t outdoors 7 -i n f i n e weather s A place to e n t e r t a i n your f r i e n d s 2 6 7 Good cooking f a c i l i t i e s . 9 1 R e f r i g e r a t o r 1 k 9 — Lots of colour \ 2 9 1 L i v i n g near your f r i e n d s | h 6 Low i n rent 10 3 _ Considerate l a n d l o r d 1 6 -Your own property e s s e n t i a l | f o r independence ! 3 2 2 Freedom from any r e s t r i c t i o n s . 1 6 -P r i v a c y 8 h I Accommodation you can share w i t h r e l a t i v e or f r i e n d I ~ 1 8 Quiet j freedom from noise 1 8 k 1 Near a bus l i n e : 6 8 -Near a shopping centre 7 k 1 Near a Church ; 1 i 3 8 Near a movie • -k Near a community centre, club or other s o c i a l meeting place \ 1 - 82 -Conclusions The m a j o r i t y of the women interviewed f o r t h i s study were i n r e c e i p t of f i n a n c i a l a s s i s t a n c e from the government and received the maximum amount of s i x t y d o l l a r s a month. As f o r residence i n West Vancouver, the average time each woman has been i n the community i s ten years. A l l but one of these women were born e i t h e r i n Canada or the B r i t i s h I s l e s but they have a l l spent most of t h e i r l i v e s i n Canada. The women of Groups C and E. tend to be more s a t i s -f i e d w i t h t h e i r present housing than those of Group D. Those w i t h i n t h i s l a t t e r group, although having .good p h y s i -c a l accommodation, would r a t h e r have a place of t h e i r own • i f ..possible. For these women who are l i v i n g w i t h sons or daughters, i t i s out of n e c e s s i t y r a t h e r than by choice that they do so. Some women i n Group C and E f i n d i t d i f f i c u l t to manage, whereas others are r e c e i v i n g e x t r a a i d from f r i e n d s or r e l a t i v e s . Many are forced to adjust to t h e i r l i m i t e d budgets and do so despite the d i f f i c u l t i e s i n v o l v e d . For a l l of those who were int e r v i e w e d , housing was. of major importance. In some cases, the accommodation seemed to be d i r e c t l y r e s p o n s i b l e f o r women having a pleasant and he a l t h y outlook on l i f e . E v i d e n t l y , a l s o , to have adequate housing of t h e i r own choice, many women are w i l l i n g to deprive - 83 -themselves of other b a s i c n e c e s s i t i e s such as food and c l o t h i n g . To the women l i v i n g w i t h married sons or daughters, and who have heard of or seen the Kiwanis' p r o j e c t , the housing u n i t s seemed to be i d e a l f o r those who wanted to be on t h e i r own. By staying w i t h r e l a t i v e s , these women's l i v i n g standards are somewhat h i g h e r than those of the women i n t h e i r own homes and those who are l i v i n g alone. As a r e s u l t , I t would b.e d i f f i c u l t f o r them to manage i n any place other than a low-rent housing p r o j e c t . Most of those i n the three groups b e l i e v e that low rent i s a major c o n s i d e r a t i o n i n choosing a pl a c e to stay. However, they would not consider a low-cost room or s u i t e unless, i t was warm, f a i r l y c l e a n, p r i v a t e , and not too n o i s y . Being near a s o c i a l gathering place or movie house d i d not e s p e c i a l l y concern these women, who a l l placed a premium on p r i v a c y . I t Is p o s s i b l e , however, that the whole subject of s o c i a l c ontacts, and how they might be needed or developed,- would p r o f i t from f u r t h e r research. In any c o n s i d e r a t i o n of housing f o r s i n g l e women, there are three p o i n t s to consi d e r : (a) whether or not they wish to l i v e alone, (b) t h e i r present housing f a c i l i t i e s , i n c l u d i n g t h e i r s a t i s f a c t i o n s from the general environment, and (c) budget. Prom t h i s survey, there is. considerable evidence that the m a j o r i t y of s i n g l e women d e s i r e to be on - 84 -t h e i r own regardless of how they now l i v e . As f o r t h e i r present accommodation, most of the women who are not with r e l a t i v e s , and c e r t a i n l y those who have been In t h e i r place f o r a number of years, consider t h e i r e x i s t i n g f a c i l i t i e s to be "adequate." I t must be remembered i n t h i s connection, however, t h a t , very o f t e n , there i s l i t t l e comparative experience a v a i l a b l e to them: under ne.cessity, one gets used to."what must be." With regard to budget i s s u e s , most of the women who l i v e alone have d i f f i c u l t y managing t h e i r f i n -ances; but, i f t h e i r cost of housing was reduced or t h e i r income.increased, they would have con s i d e r a b l y fewer problems i n managing the b a s i c n e c e s s i t i e s . CHAPTER k NEEDS AND PREFERENCES: A HEVIEW To provide adequate accommodation f o r the o l d e r c i t i z e n s w i t h i n a community i s not the answer to a l l the problems c o n f r o n t i n g these people. Proper housing i s but one of the necessary i n g r e d i e n t s needed f o r s e c u r i t y and happiness i n old age. However, because of the change i n today's l i v i n g p a t t e r n s and becaus.e many more people are l i v i n g past the age of s i x t y - f i v e , the need f o r adequate housing has become one of the major issues f a c i n g the aged i n t h e i r l a t e r years. The problem appears to be of greater magnitude on the West coast as many older couples have migrated here i n t h e i r l a t e r years. This, i s borne out by the f a c t that the Canadian average f o r people over s i x t y -f i v e i s 7 - 8 per cent whereas B r i t i s h Columbia claims 1 0 . 8 per cent and West Vancouver 1 2 . 1 per c e n t . 1 Housing schemes such a.s the K i w a n i s 1 development i n West Vancouver are a comparatively recent i n n o v a t i o n . Although the West Vancouver u n i t s were not ready f o r occupancy u n t i l A p r i l , 1 9 5 6 , many I n q u i r i e s and a p p l i c a t i o n s were received as e a r l y as 1 9 5 3 when the scheme was. f i r s t proposed. The responses of persons i n q u i r i n g and a p p l y i n g for. trios o. subsidized u n i t s.„. ;as,, well., as., the,- f i n d i n g s , of. Census of Canada, 1 9 5 l . - 86 -recent s u r v e y s 1 p l u s the f a c t that a score or more of s i m i l a r p r o j e c t s have been b u i l t i n the Vancouver area, i s evidence enough of the growing support of t h i s type of housing. Because of the i n c r e a s i n g concern f o r p r o v i d -ing o l d e r people w i t h housing and the number of groups con-s i d e r i n g the b u i l d i n g of s u i t e s , h o s t e l s and p r o j e c t s , the Vancouver Housing A s s o c i a t i o n has prepared a p r a c t i c a l guide f o r groups, a s s o c i a t i o n s or communities i n t e r e s t e d i n p i n i t i a t i n g housing p r o j e c t s . A p p l i c a t i o n s f o r the West Vancouver P r o j e c t Both before the p r o j e c t was launched, and s i n c e , there i s no doubt about the wide i n t e r e s t i n the West Vancouver Senior C i t i z e n s 1 Housing P r o j e c t . Although there were many i n q u i r i e s and a p p l i c a t i o n s , u n f o r t u n a t e l y I t i s not p o s s i b l e to compute the exact number of people who were i n t e r e s t e d i n obta i n i n g these low-rent s u i t e s . No complete record was kept, p a r t i c u l a r l y of many i n q u i r i e s which were made by telephone. In a d d i t i o n , i t appears that- many people were discouraged from making formal 1 Vancouver Housing A s s o c i a t i o n , "Housing f o r Our Older C i t i z e n s , " March, 1949,. (report of survey). .Gould-ing-,. W i l l i a m S., "Housing f o r Older People." Canadian Welfare, V o l . 28,'No. 6-(December 19^2) , pp.' 38-J4.I. Sharp, P a t r i c i a , Housing P r o j e c t s f o r Old People. Master of S o c i a l Work, t h e s i s , U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia, 195>7> surveys four out of a p o s s i b l e twenty or more housing p r o j e c t s f o r old people i n Greater Vancouver. 2 • Vancouver Housing A s s o c i a t i o n , B u i l d i n g f o r Senior  C i t i z e n s , January, 195>6. - 87 -a p p l i c a t i o n because they heard or assumed, wrongly or r i g h t l y , they would not be e l i g i b l e f o r r e s i d e n c e . I t i s safe to say, however, that at l e a s t 15>0 i n d i v i d u a l s or couples were i n t e r e s t e d i n the p r o j e c t (which offered accommodation f o r twenty-four persons). Out of the t o t a l number, almost o n e - t h i r d were from people l i v i n g outside the m u n i c i p a l i t y - s e v e n married couples, four s i n g l e men and t h i r t y - o n e s i n g l e women. The 106 l e t t e r s and a p p l i c a t i o n s from West Vancouver r e s i d e n t s showed th a t there were f i f t e e n married couples, twelve s i n g l e men and seventy-nine s i n g l e women ap p l y i n g f o r the eight double and eight s i n g l e u n i t s i n the p r o j e c t . In most Instances, two f a c t o r s were r e s p o n s i b l e f o r the m a j o r i t y of those considered to be I n e l i g i b l e . Under the r e g u l a t i o n s as set out by the " E l d e r l y C i t i z e n s ' Housing A i d A c t , " persons having an income i n excess of I4.O per cent of the maximum a l l o t t e d f o r "Old Age A s s i s -tance" were to be excluded. This clause a f f e c t e d about t e n per cent of the t o t a l . The other f a c t o r was a r u l i n g Imposed by the West Vancouver Senior C i t i z e n s ' Housing Society which r e s t r i c t e d a p p l i c a t i o n s - to those l i v i n g w i t h i n the munici-p a l i t y . A few pieces of s o c i a l data can be u t i l i z e d , i g n o r i n g f o r the moment whether the informants were e l i g i b l e or not. For example, although the ages of some of the - 88 -a p p l i c a n t s were not s t a t e d , i t can be seen from Table 2 that the m a j o r i t y of those applying were i n the age range of severity to seventy-four years. Table 2. Ages of A p p l i c a n t s - • Age- Groups Men - • - Women Under 6k years - k 6$ - 69 years 1 1 9 70 - lk years 5 29 -•- Over- 75- years - •5 - • ik- • . - .- - T o t a l : 1 1 . . 66- - -Source: E n q u i r i e s and forms, West Vancouver Senior C i t i -zens' Housing P r o j e c t . Table l i s t s a l l who gave the inform-a t i o n , r egardless of whether they were e l i g i b l e or not. Prom the a v a i l a b l e data, i t was not p o s s i b l e to determine the length of residence i n West Vancouver f o r a l l the a p p l i c a n t s . However, from Table 3 i t can be seen that s e v e r a l of those who a p p l i e d have l i v e d i n the area f o r a number of years. - 89 -Table 3- Number- of-years. l i v e d I n West Vancouver by Applicants'"' Years i n - . S i n g l e Married West Vancouver Men Women Couples Under 4. years .1 7 2 5 - 9 'years - 3 1 10 - 19 years 2 10 1 20 or more - 17 3 Formerly l i v e d i n . West Vancouver.- • • - - 9 3 . T o t a l . 3 . 46 (20) - -I n c l u d i n g a l l persons who applied i n w r i t i n g (regardless of whether or not they sent i n an o f f i c i a l a p p l i c a t i o n b l a n k ) } and gave informa t i o n about p e r i o d of residence. I t can be observed from the foregoing that the number of a p p l i c a t i o n s f o r s i n g l e s u i t e s f a r exceeds those f o r the cottages. The Vancouver Housing A s s o c i a t i o n judges the minimum need f o r s i n g l e u n i t s i s three times as great as that f o r double accommodation. The a p p l i c a t i o n s f o r the West Vancouver development i n d i c a t e , however, that s i n g l e a p p l i c a n t s outnumber married applicants, by a r a t i o of more than s i x to one. In s p i t e of t h i s , u s u a l l y because of l i m i t a t i o n s i n the c o n d i t i o n s under which governmental a i d i n f i n a n c i n g can be obtained, i n a l l the housing p r o j e c t s i n the Greater Vancouver area that have s e l f - c o n t a i n e d s u i t e s , - 90 -the number of s i n g l e s u i t e s does not exceed that of double u n i t s . In summary, the trends i n d i c a t e d i n the a p p l i c a t i o n s f o r the housing p r o j e c t .in West Vancouver were:: many more single, people than couples, and a higher p r o p o r t i o n of " s i n g l e " women ( i . e . , women, whatever t h e i r m a r i t a l s t a t u s , who required s i n g l e u n i t s ) than " s i n g l e " men. As f a r as residence i s concerned, the a p p l i c a n t s i ncluded a l a r g e group who had been i n the m u n i c i p a l i t y f o r over twenty years, and a smaller group who had been i n the m u n i c i p a l i t y under ten years. Types of S i t u a t i o n s and Accommodation L't would r e q u i r e an extensive s p e c i a l survey to e s t a b l i s h these s t a t i s t i c a l dimensions f o r the whole commun-i t y . The present study has aimed only at gathering a sample of s i t u a t i o n s and r e a c t i o n s which have some t y p i c a l i t y . In. v i s i t i n g these older people, many circumstances were found; much has gone i n t o t h e i r l i v e s and t h i s adds up to. a wide v a r i e t y of s i t u a t i o n s . The w r i t e r s have t r i e d to weigh these v a r i a t i o n s and systematize the f i n d i n g s of the survey,, p a r t i c u l a r l y w i t h reference to the l i v i n g arrangements of these old people and t h e i r resources f o r meeting housing problems. As mentioned p r e v i o u s l y , West Vancouver has s p e c i a l f e a t u r e s , i n c l u d i n g i t s p a t t e r n of settlement. Residents appear to have a r r i v e d i n two waves, each w i t h character-i s t i c s of i t s own. The f i r s t wave, s t a r t i n g about 1906, might be described as the " o l d t i m e r s . " They e s t a b l i s h e d themselves i n r u r a l surroundings, and f o r many of them t h e i r f i n a n c i a l resources were meagre. Nevertheless., most of them managed to acquire a small house of t h e i r own. The second wave of r e s i d e n t s , who are mostly i n a higher income bracket than the f i r s t , s t a r t e d to come to West Vancouver i n 1938 a f t e r the L i o n s 1 Gate Bridge was opened. The survey gives some i n d i c a t i o n that these s p e c i a l f e a t u r e s of West Vancouver, i n c l u d i n g the two waves of settlement, are t i e d i n r a t h e r c l o s e l y w i t h some of the f i n d i n g s of t h i s , study. This i s . to be expected, as the geographical and developmental c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of any area form an important p a r t of the b a s i c s o c i a l and c u l t u r a l patterns of that area. The f i r s t notable d i v i s i o n revealed, by the survey was between the homeowners and those who are r e n t i n g accommodation. The homeowners, g e n e r a l l y speaking, a.re par t of the " o l d time" group who have l i v e d i n West Van-couver f o r many years. Many of them s t i l l occupy the same home today which they acquired sometimes as f a r back as f o r t y years ago. On the other hand, most of those who are r e n t i n g accommodation, have come to the m u n i c i p a l i t y - 92 -w i t h i n the past twenty years. The l a t t e r i s a smaller but none the l e s s s i g n i f i c a n t group of older people who e i t h e r came w i t h or fol l o w e d married c h i l d r e n , whom they wish to be near. In t h i s main d i v i s i o n between homeowners and those who are l i v i n g w i t h others or r e n t i n g accommodation, i t i s ' of i n t e r e s t to look at some of the broader Influence which f i n d expression i n t h e i r l i v e s . I t seems c l e a r that wherever one f i n d s people, t h e i r modes of l i v i n g are i n f l u e n c e d not only by the l o c a l environment but a l s o by the wider and per-haps l e s s obvious c u l t u r a l e v o l u t i o n which i s t a k i n g place across the n a t i o n . This i s none the l e s s t r u e i n West Vancouver where the s p e c i a l features of settlement and economic c o n s i d e r a t i o n s , have shaped, to some extent, the s i t u a t i o n found today among the older residence. On the other hand, the c u l t u r a l changes t a k i n g place i n f a m i l y l i f e due to the Influence of u r b a n i z a t i o n , are a l s o demon-st r a t e d i n t h i s community. This broader i n f l u e n c e of u r b a n i z a t i o n has brought wi t h i t the smaller home. This i n t u r n has lead to the two-generation and one-generation households, which have to a large extent replaced the o l d three-generation household. This trend whereby parents l i v e s e p a r a t e l y from married c h i l d r e n i s r e f l e c t e d i n West Vancouver even In the small number of persons and households included i n t h i s study. - 93 -Nearly a l l of the older couples Included i n the study maintain t h e i r own households; although many had married c h i l d r e n a l s o l i v i n g i n West Vancouver. The couples who rent accommodation, l i k e w i s e , were found to be. l i v i n g apart from t h e i r married c h i l d r e n . .In t h i s l a t t e r group were a number who came to the m u n i c i p a l i t y to be near t h e i r married c h i l d r e n ; however, they wished to maintain " t h e i r own home" while being close enough to v i s i t w ith t h e i r f a m i l i e s . I t i s l i k e l y , too, that there would not be enough room In t h e i r c h i l d r e n ' s homes f o r them. These two groups are thus t y p i c a l , probably, of the trend toward the two-generation and the one-generation household. Among the s i n g l e women,1 there Is a f a i r l y w e l l -defined group who are l i v i n g w i t h married sons or d-aughters, and I t i s to be noted t h a t , g e n e r a l l y speaking, t h i s group, are the l e a s t accepting of t h e i r p o s i t i o n . Most of them said they would p r e f e r "to have a place of t h e i r own." In t h i s r espect, they appeared to f i n d t h e i r married c h i l d r e n ' s homes d i d not f i l l t h e i r needs. They appeared to be r e c e i v i n g d i m i n i s h i n g s a t i s f a c t i o n s from t h e i r l i v i n g arrangements although, as a group, the p h y s i c a l environment which surrounded them was much superior to that of e i t h e r of the•two - other groups of s i n g l e women. 1 Throughout the study, i t was kept i n mind that the two group s — c o u p l e s and s i n g l e persons--are not e n t i r e l y u n r e l a t e d , as on the death of a spouse, the s u r v i v i n g member must p l a n a c c o r d i n g l y . - 9k -Even though the three-generation f a m i l y home has. almost disappeared, due l a r g e l y to smaller homes, the wish of older people to l i v e i n the v i c i n i t y of t h e i r grown-up c h i l d r e n i s evident. Many of the women i n t h i s study who are at present r e s i d i n g In the homes of r e l a t i v e s , but who would l i k e separate accommodation of t h e i r own, want none the l e s s to remain In West Vancouver. Although " f a c i l i t i e s have changed, so that there i s often no longer room f o r r e l a t i v e s i n the smaller homes of today, there remains the d e s i r e to be near enough to one's c h i l d r e n to permit v i s i t i n g . This was borne out by both couple s':.and s i n g l e persons In the study. I t i s both n a t u r a l and d e s i r a b l e that t h i s p a t t e r n of a strong f a m i l y bond be r e t a i n e d . The "homestead" has gone, but the people, together with t h e i r p s y c h o l o g i c a l needs, have remained. These p s y c h o l o g i c a l needs of the ageing have been delineated by Laycock 1 as: the (need f o r a f f e c t i o n ; the need f o r belonging; the need f o r Independence (reasonably to order one's own l i f e and make one's own d e c i s i o n s ) ; the need f o r achievement; the need f o r r e c o g n i t i o n ; the need f o r self-esteem (to f e e l that one 1s p e r s o n a l i t y and conduct come up reasonably w e l l to one's own inner standards). • Gardner, Walter P. " P s y c h i a t r y i n G e r i a t r i c s , " Minnesota Medicine, Vol.' 33, pp. 3$3~3$9, A p r i l , 19$0. - 9$ -Several of these needs are probably being f r u s -t r a t e d i n the l i v e s of the women who are at present i n t h e i r c h i l d r e n 1 s homes and who voiced the de s i r e to have a p l a c e of t h e i r own. In the small modern home of today the older person who i s an e x t r a member of the household, f i n d s l i t t l e to do that i s meaningful and may l a c k the sense of s e l f esteem which she formerly had i n her own home. In her own small place on the other hand, at l e a s t she has status i n her own eyes and a sense of Independence which i s s a t i s f y i n g to her. This. Is one of the reasons why so many of these older women looked on the s i n g l e u n i t s of the Senior C i t i z e n s * housing p r o j e c t as i d e a l f o r t h e i r needs. D i f f e r e n c e s of S o c i a l and, Economic S i t u a t i o n s Another c o n s i d e r a t i o n which i s e q u a l l y important i s the matter of budget. The type of accommodation which i s afforded by the Senior Citizens'* housing p r o j e c t i s w i t h i n the budget of most of these s i n g l e women who d e s i r e a place of t h e i r own. I t i s u n l i k e l y that they would be able to f i n d s a t i s f a c t o r y s i n g l e accommodation elsewhere which i s w i t h i n t h e i r reach f i n a n c i a l l y . I t was evident from these e n q u i r i e s that many older people who are r e n t i n g accommodation f i n d the rent too high and are going without other t h i n g s to r e t a i n t h e i r f a m i l i a r .surroundings; many of them have t r i e d to f i n d a - 96 -cheaper place without success. Finances are a problem too. f o r the older couples and the s i n g l e women who are remain-ing i n t h e i r own homes. I t might be assumed at f i r s t t h a t the o l d e r people l i v i n g In t h e i r own homes would not be a source of concern from the standpoint of housing. But i t i s evident that they too have a s p e c i a l problem. They have not s u f f i c i e n t income i n many cases to keep up t h e i r homes p r o p e r l y , to heat them adequately, and to pay the taxes., without going short on other e s s e n t i a l s . Housing has' many e f f e c t s on old people. The f a c i l i t i e s a v a i l a b l e and the budget con s i d e r a t i o n s between them i n f l u e n c e the old person's" l i f e v i t a l l y , f o r h i s w e l l - b e i n g or otherwise. What o b l i g a t i o n s does the community have f o r older f o l k ? They should be provided w i t h opportunities' to l i v e a f u l l and happy l i f e f o r t h e i r remaining years. This should be thought of, not as " c h a r i t y , " or a s e r v i c e to keep t o t t e r i n g and i n f i r m people safe, and warm, but as a mental h e a l t h measure, whose object i s to giv e these i n d i v i d -u a l s , a f e e l i n g of s e c u r i t y and independence and a chance to go on t a k i n g p a r t i n the l i f e of the community they know. I t was apparent that an adequate budget, independence, and p r i v a c y are a l l h i g h l y valued by the older persons com-municated with through t h i s study. These f i n d i n g s are subst a n t i a t e d by other s t u d i e s which have had reference to o l d e r people and t h e i r housing - 97 -needs. W i l l i a m S. Goulding, an a r c h i t e c t , who completed a survey of e x i s t i n g housing.in Canada f o r the Research D i v i s i o n of C e n t r a l Mortgage and Housing Corporation, a few years ago, had t h i s to say: I t i s a widespread and most serious e r r o r to i n t e r -pret present demands f o r admission to i n s t i t u t i o n s as a need f o r more and bigger i n s t i t u t i o n s . . . . W h a t most people need and cannot f i n d , i s simply a small con-venient place to l i v e w i t h other people close by. 1 He goes on to say that i n c i t i e s , as competition grows keener f o r a v a i l a b l e housing, o l d e r people have l e s s and l e s s money w i t h which to compete f o r a v a i l a b l e space. This was borne out over and over again i n the study i n West Vancouver, e s p e c i a l l y concerning the couples and s i n g l e women who are r e n t i n g accommodation. These older people are hard-pressed: as rents, continue to r i s e , they move, they cut down on food and f u e l c o s t s . As Mr. Coulding observed t h i s chain of circumstances, also i n h i s survey, he commented t h a t , e v e n t u a l l y , i f the old f o l k s t i l l have f r i e n d s , someone w i l l t r y to get them, i n t o an i n s t i t u t i o n , simply because the community has- crowded them out. To make b e t t e r room than t h i s f o r the older c i t i z e n and to r e s t o r e him to a place of d i g n i t y , i t w i l l b.e necessary to see that the general housing stock i n our communities provide f o r the needs, of an • i n c r e a s i n g number of older c i t i z e n s . . .-• Goulding-, W i l l i a m S.. "Housing f o r Older People," Canadian Welfare, V o l . 28, No. 6 (December 19^2) , pp. 38-4.I. - 98 -Accordingly,' w e l l designed housing p r o j e c t s , of which the Senior C i t i z e n s 1 housing p r o j e c t i n West Vancouver Is one, are most important because they help to keep the i n d i v i d u a l "at home" i n the community. This helps the old person'.s morale and gives him something to l i v e f o r ; although there may w e l l be other welfare needs which cannot be supplied through housing accomodation alone. The r e a c t i o n s to the housing p r o j e c t , of the f i f t y older people Included i n t h i s study were, of course, c l o s e l y t i e d to t h e i r I n d i v i d u a l housing needs. I t was found that the married couples owning t h e i r own homes p r e f e r to remain i n t h e i r homes as long as they are able. This was t r u e , too, of the s i n g l e women In t h e i r own homes, and of those who are l i v i n g alone because of choice. Most of the l a t t e r group had been In t h e i r present accommodation f o r some time and, because t h e i r surroundings were f a m i l i a r , they f e l t adjusted to them. This p a r t i c u l a r group of s i n g l e women were e x a c t l y l i k e the couples who owned t h e i r own homes i n t h i s r e s p e c t : they wished to c a r r y on where they were as long as p o s s i b l e . Nevertheless, although they wished to remain i n t h e i r present abode, both these groups were having finaxt-c i a l d i f f i c u l t i e s i n doing so. I t may be that w i t h more i n t e r p r e t a t i o n , and through becoming b e t t e r acquainted w i t h the advantages, both i n : 'terms of comfort and i n terms - 99 -of budget, some out of these groups would more r e a d i l y decide to move to a housing p r o j e c t i f space were a v a i l a b l e f o r them. This would, however, need f u r t h e r study and oppor-t u n i t i e s f o r information and, probably, personal contact. A s p e c i a l p o i n t which would r e q u i r e f u r t h e r examination concerns the homeowner's e l i g i b i l i t y f o r a p r o j e c t should he s e l l h i s own home. I f he should s e l l h i s home-,and r e g u l a t i o n s take no account of t h i s , the homeowner may thereby acquire "new ass e t s , " because they are now In mone-t a r y form, which may put him In an Income bracket d i s q u a l i f y -ing him (though h i s housing needs remain) f o r admission to a l o w - r e n t a l housing p r o j e c t f o r senior c i t i z e n s . The married couples who are l i v i n g i n rented accommodation, and the s i n g l e women who are l i v i n g w i t h married c h i l d r e n , are the two groups who most c l e a r l y at present see accommodation i n the housing p r o j e c t as i d e a l f o r t h e i r housing needs. The s i n g l e women i n t h i s group are more numerous than the couples. I t should be stressed that there were, of course, i n d i v i d u a l v a r i a t i o n s w i t h i n a l l the groups. As the f i f t y persons i n the group studied were v i s i t e d , i t was evident t h a t there i s no stereotyped old person. Each has h i s or her I n d i v i d u a l i t y - - a s at every other age. In t h e i r housing s i t u a t i o n s , too, there i s not one, but many problems. - 100 -Some Welfare I m p l i c a t i o n s f o r Senior C i t i z e n s ' Housing P r o j e c t s One of the aims of t h i s study has been to assess both the pros and the cons of l i v i n g i n a senior c i t i z e n s ' housing p r o j e c t , from the point .of view of the older person. Part of t h i s s e c t i o n i s to show the d i f f i c u l t i e s , both p h y s i -c a l and emotional, which some older people have encountered i n t h e i r present housing experience. The terms "housing" and "old people" may be simple and f a c t u a l enough i n some ways; but there i s i n r e a l i t y , no simple s i t u a t i o n . People are complex; and, p a r t i c u l a r l y f o r older persons, much has been woven i n t o t h e i r l i v e s from d i f f e r e n t l i f e experiences. Prom studies of human behaviour which have evolved i n the past t h i r t y y e a r s , much has been learned about under-standing persons and t h e i r i n d i v i d u a l r e a c t i o n s to t h e i r environment. The s o c i a l worker who has studied human behaviour and p e r s o n a l i t y development i s ther e f o r e equipped through h i s use of t h i s knowledge, to be s k i l f u l and understanding i n i n t e r v i e w i n g . S o c i a l workers are p u t t i n g t h e i r s k i l l s i n i n t e r v i e w i n g and s o c i a l diagnosis to use i n the f i e l d s of f a m i l y and c h i l d growth and development, i n the area of c o r r e c t i o n s , and i n h e l p i n g p a t i e n t s who have p h y s i c a l or mental i l l s . The s o c i a l worker i s also making a c o n t r i b u t i o n i n the broader f i e l d s of group work and • community o r g a n i z a t i o n . But the time has s u r e l y a r r i v e d when these s k i l l s should be used wherever s o c i a l assessment - 101 -i s needed i n the f i e l d of low-cost housing? In the planning that takes place p r i o r to the c o n s t r u c t i o n of a housing p r o j e c t , many f a c t o r s that i n v o l v e s o c i a l planning need to be considered. Surveys and studie s must be conducted i n order to e s t a b l i s h the basis- of the need and the nature of the pl a n . I n determining the neces-s i t y f o r a housing p r o j e c t as w e l l as the type and number of u n i t s to be constructed, the s o c i a l worker may w e l l be able to f u r n i s h Information' regarding the requlrement.si.and d e s i r e s of the people to be housed. The welfare of the aged i s being given constant c o n s i d e r a t i o n by the p r o f e s s i o n of s o c i a l work from t h i s p o i n t of view; but since a l o w - r e n t a l housing p r o j e c t b u i l t s p e c i f i c a l l y f o r o l d e r people has welfare i m p l i c a t i o n s which cannot be overlooked, i t seems reasonable that s o c i a l workers should be u t i l i z e d as f a r as. p o s s i b l e i n the planning of such developments. I t i s true that q u a l i f i e d workers are scarce; but t h i s i s true of a l l h e a l t h and welfare f i e l d s . The housing issue i s one of balance and wise d i s t r i b u t i o n of e f f o r t . A s o c i a l worker's c o n t r i b u t i o n does not n e c e s s a r i l y end when the i n i t i a l planning of a p r o j e c t i s . completed, as he can al s o be of as s i s t a n c e i n e l i g i b i l i t y p o l i c i e s , and i n i n t e r p r e t i n g these to the admissions committee. Another area of competence f o r the s o c i a l worker would be i n i n t e r -p r e t i n g the p r o j e c t to a p p l i c a n t s ; and, i f necessary, h e l p i n g the i n d i v i d u a l make the t r a n s i t i o n ' f r o m his. present - 102 -accommodation to new housing. In e v a l u a t i n g a person f o r residence i n a p r o j e c t , the evidence shows that there are three major f a c t o r s t o be considered: (1) the budget, (2) the present f a c i l i t i e s of the a p p l i c a n t , and, (3) the person's r e a c t i o n to h i s present accommodation, ( i n c l u d i n g l i v i n g w ith f r i e n d s or r e l a t i v e s ) . In s p i t e of budget problems, and sub-standard f a c i l i t i e s , some older people wish to remain where they are. Oftentimes they are ambivalent about making a move and need to " t a l k t hings out" i n order to get a b e t t e r p e r s p e c t i v e on t h e i r s i t u a t i o n . In the assessment of each of these three areas and t h e i r r e l e v a n t importance to the o l d e r person, a s o c i a l worker as an agent f o r the housing p r o j e c t could be of major a s s i s t a n c e . I n c i d e n t a l l y , through h i s knowledge of community resources and s e r v i c e s , the s o c i a l worker might w e l l be of help to the older people w i t h whom he has. contact."*" No matter how modern and convenient a housing pro-j e c t may be, as. compared to the i n d i v i d u a l ' s former accommo-da t i o n , the n e c e s s i t y of moving from a f a m i l i a r to an u n f a m i l i a r place and changing a l l h i s h a b i t u a l r o u t i n e s , may produce a n x i e t y and even f e a r . No matter how drab h i s former abode, i t was f a m i l i a r . No matter how keen he i s to have a pla c e of- h i s own,, the t r a n s i t i o n w i l l arouse some i n s e c u r i t y . 1 While Interviewing to e s t a b l i s h the need of the a p p l i c a n t f o r low cost housing, the worker may f i n d an opportunity to advise a p p l i c a n t s of various community s e r v i c e s and resources from which the a p p l i c a n t might b e n e f i t . Whether or not t h i s should be developed would depend on the community, the p u b l i c and p r i v a t e agencies i n t e r e s t e d , and so f o r t h . - 103 -W i l l he be able to l i v e up to the r e g u l a t i o n s of the p r o j e c t Old people can adjust to new surroundings, but i t takes time Several of the old people i n t h i s , study had moved from one p a r t of West Vancouver to another, of t e n a short d i s t a n c e , but found they " f e l t l i k e strangers" f o r quite a while i n t h e i r new p l a c e . W i l l h i s only help i n a d j u s t i n g i n his: strange surroundings be a handbook of " r u l e s and r e g u l a t i o n s d e a l i n g w i t h such s i g n i f i c a n t questions' as animal pets, flower pots on window s i l l s and t e l e v i s i o n a e r i a l s ? " l The f i r s t step i n achieving a. sense of s e c u r i t y and belonging i n the new home could be i n f e e l i n g he i s s t i l l a r e s p o n s i b l c i t i z e n . This is., of course, a .challenge to. wise management "No matter how benevolent the a d m i n i s t r a t i v e s t a f f may be, through personal i n c l i n a t i o n or as a matter of p o l i c y , the ba s i c o b j e c t i v e is. not the c r e a t i o n of a benevolent auto-cracy or benevolent p a t e r n a l i s m . Are people to be found who w i l l " f i t " r e g u l a t i o n s , or i s adequate housing to be provided which w i l l be appropriate f o r those who need i t ? Income e l i g i b i l i t y • -'•••Rose-,. A l b e r t , "Housing A d m i n i s t r a t i o n i n Canada," Canadian Welfare, V o l . 28, No. 6. (December 19^2), p. 3$. I b i d • , p. 37- This matter i s touched on.in more d e t a i l i n Sharp, P a t r i c i a , Housing P r o j e c t s f o r Old People, Chapter J|, Master of S o c i a l Work t h e s i s , U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia, 19^7-- lOlj. -questions are important here, as w e l l as matters of s i z e , units., f a c i l i t i e s - . Among other questions, are a few as.sets' which an aged person may have, i n f a c t going to be l i a -b i l i t i e s to him i f he i s an a p p l i c a n t f o r s u i t a b l e housing? There are many such questions, which remain to be. answered. In the past, much of the p u b l i c i n t e r e s t i n the problems of housing the ageing has been centered around the i n f i r m and c h r o n i c a l l y i l l . However, some surveys i n d i c a t e that over n i n e t y per cent of the aged l i v e out t h e i r l i v e s i n a conventional house, whether i t be t h e i r own or that of a r e l a t i v e or f r i e n d . 1 Able-bodied older people should r e c e i v e t h e i r proper share of a t t e n t i o n . Many sources i n d i c a t e a preference of the m a j o r i t y of older people- f o r n o n - i n s t i t u t i o n a l l i v i n g . There seems to be a very r e a l dread on the p a r t of the aged to going to an i n s t i t u t i o n . I t seems evident that i f there i s any way i n which t h e i r homes, can be made s a f e r and more convenient to l i v e i n , t h i s w i l l ease the economic burden on the ageing and also on those who must care f o r them, i f they are not able to c a r r y on. S i g n i f i c a n t , too, i s ' the p r o b a b i l i t y that i t w i l l ease the burden on the taxpayers by s u b s t a n t i a l l y reducing the number of ageing who might otherwise have to be cared f o r i n nursing homes at p u b l i c expense. Donahue, Wilma, ed. Housing the Ageing, U n i v e r s i t y of Michigan Press, Ann Arbor, Michigan, 1954-V p. 9. - io£ -There i s a growing understanding, on the p a r t of t h o u g h t f u l c i t i z e n s , that the senior c i t i z e n has r i g h t s , and that he should be consulted when i n need of more s u i t a b l e accommodation. An i n d i c a t i o n of thi s , growing p u b l i c aware-ness, i s that newspaper and magazine a r t i c l e s appear almost d a i l y . A l e a d i n g a r t i c l e i n Coronet Magazine, A p r i l , 19.5>7> i s t y p i c a l , i t asks "what c:an be done to keep the older person i n the stream of l i f e ? " and goes on to describe an old couple who went to l i v e i n an " o l d folks'* home." They were w e l l cared f o r , but f e l t "cut o f f from the world." This brought resentment and constant complaints. They had indeed been cut o f f from l i f e and l i v i n g . They no longer prepared t h e i r own meals, or attended to t h e i r small household chores. The s t r o l l down the road to shop, the neighbours' c h i l d r e n , f a m i l i a r s c e n e s — a l l these are important p a r t s of the l i f e which to them i s s t i m u l a t i n g and v i t a l . In each of these aged persons remains, the w i l l to be part of t h i s world and i t s l i f e . The l o c a t i o n of housing p r o j e c t s i s a h i g h l y important issue because of t h i s , need to keep the senior c i t i z e n " i n the stream of l i f e " and i n the surroundings, w i t h which he i s f a m i l i a r . Communities, l i k e i n d i v i d u a l s , , can be very d i f f e r e n t from one another. This a p p l i e s too, i n planning f o r the aged i n a community. Each area must study i t s own p a r t i c u l a r s i t u a t i o n and then promote plans which w i l l s u i t i t s needs. - 106' -Helping the community to understand i t s . problems regarding the aged, has to be done i n layman's language-. The whole community should be helped to grasp the ide a that o l d age i s a normal and respected stage of l i f e to which each member w i l l come i f he l i v e s long enough. Every step taken toward the w e l l - b e i n g of i t s old people is. a c o n s t r u c t i v e step which could w e l l give the community an asset as w e l l as a sense- of achievement. As i n other areas, b e t t e r planning i n the f i e l d of old age may be achieved i f older people themselves are included i n the planning. Though i t i s . a l s o true that the best planning f o r old people w i l l come when welfare s e r v i c e s f o r the aged are planned i n r e l a t i o n to a l l other welfare s e r v i c e s . And the same i s true of housing. Housing f o r o l d people i s a s p e c i a l branch of housing f o r low-income groups; and there i s a wide and v a r i e d experience i n p u b l i c housing i n many c o u n t r i e s which can be drawn on. There are many th i n g s to consider i n t a k i n g a c t i o n to c o r r e c t an impoverished housing s i t u a t i o n . I n searching f o r a s o l u t i o n , o l d e r people must be looked at a's an I n t e g r a l pa r t of the community. To p l a n and execute a p r o j e c t f o r o l d e r people without t h e i r p a r t i c i p a t i o n or an i n q u i r y i n t o t h e i r p a r t i c u l a r needs would be unfortunate, to say the l e a s t . No matter whatoa proposed s o l u t i o n might be, however, i t s development should r e s u l t from the e f f o r t of the e n t i r e community. - 107 -There are two schools, of thought on t h i s matter; one b e l i e v e s that the- development of a s p e c i f i c p r o j e c t i s the important t h i n g , the other f e e l s , the p r o j e c t to be of l e s s importance than the. development of the c a p a c i t y .of the people w i t h i n a community to create that p r o j e c t . I t i s ' true that a c t i o n can o f t e n be slow when the program gen-erates from w i t h i n the community and s.eeks to obt a i n the support of many groups of people. However, the knowledge gained by those who work together, and the educated con-v i c t i o n w i t h which these people can become imbued has.' f a r more meaning and permanence than any imposed p r o j e c t . I f t h i s i s - the cas.e, then i t would appear t h a t the c o n s t r u c t i o n of senior c i t i z e n s ' housing u n i t s can serve a twofold purpose. One would be to help b r i n g the community c l o s e r together i n terms of understanding and "working as a team" .toward's s o l v i n g t h e i r own problems. The c r e a t i o n of the p r o j e c t i t s e l f would, of course, serve to r e l i e v e the p r e s s i n g need f o r housing. For the aged, there i s also a growing need f o r other s e r v i c e s designed to enhance t h e i r l i v e s . One way i n which the needs of older people might be met i s through a c e n t r a l i z e d agency designed e s p e c i a l l y to a i d the- aged. An example of such a s e r v i c e Is the Senior C i t i z e n s ' O f f i c e which has been e s t a b l i s h e d r e c e n t l y by the Community Chest - 108 -and C o u n c i l of V i c t o r i a . 1 ..Because of West Vancouver's r e l a t i v e l y small p o p u l a t i o n , i t does not seem f e a s i b l e at the present moment that such an agency could be est-ablished i n the m u n i c i p a l i t y . However, i f welfare s e r v i c e s f o r the aged were coordinated i n the Greater Vancouver area, every f a c e t of the problems that face older people could be planned on a more comprehensive b a s i s . I t i s worthy of note that many of the older people t a l k e d to i n the present survey seemed to t h i n k of Vancouver ( c i t y ) as remote. I t may w e l l be that some would not be able to a v a i l themselves of s e r v i c e s "at a di s t a n c e . " A good dea l depends on what the s e r v i c e s are, however. Housing f o r older people e n t a i l s ' many th i n g s : planning, b u i l d i n g , f i n a n c i n g , p u b l i c education, welfare o r g a n i z a t i o n , and much more. E d u c a t i o n a l work at many l e v e l s i s obviously necessary. I t i s .clear a l s o that the p o o l i n g of experience i s needed. Volunteers, and p u b l i c - s p i r i t e d c i t i z e n s and groups have important r o l e s to p l a y ; but there are areas of expert competence- which must be d e a i t w i t h by a p p r o p r i a t e l y - q u a l i f i e d personnel. This blend of expert and amateur, i n d i v i d u a l and community, i s not e a s i l y achieved. The backlog.of housing needs makes i t urgent. But i t i s only 1 The Senior C i t i z e n s ' O f f i c e i s of course c l o s e l y assoc-i a t e d w i t h the Community Chest and C o u n c i l . The services of t h i s o f f i c e i n c l u d e : to provide housing and room r e g i s t r y r e f e r r a l s e r v i c e f o r e l d e r l y people; and, to provide an i n f o r m a t i o n a l c l e a r i n g house where e l d e r l y people may r e f e r questions and problems. - 109 -by combining a l l the p o s i t i v e f o r c e s i n the community that good housing f o r the aged and enough of i t , w i l l become a r e a l i t y . - 110 -Appendix A. Regulations of the " E l d e r l y C i t i z e n s ' Housing A i d Act" 1. In these r e g u l a t i o n s , " n o n - p r o f i t c o r p o r a t i o n i n c l u d e s an o r g a n i z a t i o n of recognized standing such as a r e l i g i o u s , s e r v i c e , or f r a t e r n a l o r g a n i z a t i o n ; or a s o c i e t y incorporated under the " S o c i e t i e s A c t " f o r the express purpose of c o n s t r u c t i n g , r e c o n s t r u c t i n g , or a c q u i r -in g l o w - r e n t a l housing units, f o r e l d e r l y c i t i z e n s of low-i n cffime. 2. A m u n i c i p a l i t y or n o n - p r o f i t c o r p o r a t i o n ( h e r e a f t e r r e f e r r e d to. as "sponsors") d e s i r i n g a i d under t h i s Act s h a l l make a p p l i c a t i o n to the P r o v i n c i a l Secretary i n Form I i f a new p r o j e c t or i n Form I I i f an a d d i t i o n to an e x i s t i n g p r o j e c t a f f o r d i n g homes f o r e l d e r l y c i t i z e n s , and s h a l l submit to the P r o v i n c i a l Secretary:-(I) The s i t e p l a n of the p r o j e c t showing the l o c a t i o n of the b u i l d i n g s on the s i t e ; and ( i i ) The plans and s p e c i f i c a t i o n s prepared by an a r c h i -t e c t showing the c o n s t r u c t i o n and equipment, and the number and arrangements of d w e l l i n g u n i t s i n each b u i l d i n g . 3. I t s h a l l be a c o n d i t i o n precedent to the c o n s i d e r a t i o n by the Lieutenant-Governor i n C o u n c i l of an a p p l i c a t i o n f o r aid under t h i s Act that the sponsors s h a l l g i v e an under-t a k i n g that i n the operation of the p r o j e c t :.0 (a) Any operating p r o f i t s h a l l be a p p l i e d to the improve-ment of the p r o j e c t and (.or) r e d u c t i o n i n r e n t a l s , and s h a l l not be d i s t r i b u t e d by way of d i v i d e n d or otherwise to any person or persons: (b) The occupants w i l l be ambulatory and whose medical needs are such they can be cared f o r by a v i s i t i n g medical p r a c t i t i o n e r : (c) The sponsors w i l l assume f u l l r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r any operating d e f i c i t s that may a r i s e from the operation of the p r o j e c t ; (d) That occupancy s h a l l be l i m i t e d to e l d e r l y persons whose t o t a l f i x e d income from a l l sources does not exceed the equivalent of I4.O per cent of the Old-age A s s i s t a n c e allowance plus the B r i t i s h Columbia c o s t - o f - l i v i n g bonus; (d) That the r e n t a l s and boarding r a t e s charged s h a l l conform to the i n t e n t of the Act and these r e g u l a t i o n s , and that the r e n t a l s and boarding rates s h a l l not exceed those stated as being contemplated In Form I and Form I I , except w i t h the p r i o r approval of the P r o v i n c i a l S e c r e t a r y : (f) Reasonable s u p e r v i s i o n w i l l be maintained. - I l l -k. (a) When the sponsor f o r whom a i d has been approved has entered i n t o a c o n t r a c t , i t may, as c o n s t r u c t i o n progresses, submit claims i n Form I I I to the P r o v i n c i a l Secretary. The claims may i n c l u d e , besides the a c t u a l cost of c o n s t r u c t -i o n : -( i ) A r c h i t e c t ' s fees': ( i i ) The cost of the land f o r the p r o j e c t i f i t has. been p r e v i o u s l y agreed that such cost may form a p a r t of the estimated t o t a l cost of the p r o j e c t f o r the purposes of aid under t h i s A c t ; ( i i i ) Sidewalks, landscaping, e t c . , subject to the approval of the P r o v i n c i a l Secretary. (b) A i d may not be given under this. Act i n respect of :-( i ) Land owned by a m u n i c i p a l i t y : ( i i ) Equipment or f u r n i s h i n g s of the p r o j e c t , w i t h the exception of bathroom f a c i l i t i e s , plumbing, s i n k s , stoves, and e l e c t r i c - l i g h t i n g and heating f i x t u r e s . $. Each c l a i m must be supported by the- c e r t i f i c a t e of the a r c h i t e c t and signed by two o f f i c e r s of the m u n i c i p a l i t y or n o n - p r o f i t c o r p o r a t i o n sponsoring the p r o j e c t . 6. When a i d has been granted under t h i s Act, there s h a l l be refunded to the .Government of B r i t i s h Columbia the f u l l amount of such a i d I f the p r o j e c t i s ' used f o r any purpose other than approved under t h i s Act. No p r o j e c t , f o r which aid has been made a v a i l a b l e pursuant to t h i s A c t , s h a l l be sold or t r a n s f e r r e d without the approval of the Lieutenant-Governor i n C o u n c i l , and upon the sale of such p r o j e c t or t r a n s f e r w i t h cash c o n s i d e r a t i o n f o l l o w i n g the approval of the Lieutenant-Governor i n C o u n c i l , one t h i r d of the proceeds of the sal e or cash c o n s i d e r a t i o n s h a l l be p a i d to the Government of B r i t i s h Columbia. 7. Any p r o j e c t f o r which aid has been made a y a i l a b l e pursuant to t h i s Act s h a l l be subject to i n s p e c t i o n at any time by a person appointed f o r t h i s purpose by the Lieutenant-governor i n Council.:..:-; 8. The sponsor s h a l l submit to the P r o v i n c i a l Secretary an audited f i n a n c i a l -statement annually. ' 9. The foregoing r e g u l a t i o n s s h a l l apply to a l l p r o j e c t s f o r which a i d has been approved pursuant t o t h i s Act. sub-sequent to the 31st day of March, 19$$. - 112 -Appendix B. Questionnaire-schedule used to implement the s tu.dy HOUSING. FOR SENIOR CITIZENS Name: Age. M. . . F... Years InW.V... Street and Number In Canada ... Y r s . Provinces.. Si n g l e f a m i l y house ... Apartment .... Duplex ... F l o o r ( s ) ... Converted (multiple-occupancy) house .. h o t e l .. S p e c i a l .... Owned .. P a r t l y owned .. Rented .. Own f u r n i t u r e .. Other .... L i v i n g : alone - •... Married .couple :,. •. With., relatives.. .....,Friends .. A. Condition of b u i l d i n g : New to 10 years , 11 to .20 years . . . Older I n t e r i o r New Old Clean D i r t y Needs Repair C. U t i l i t i e s • E x t e r i o r F i n i s h New or .. well-kept Old, run-down .. D i r t y Needs Repair.. ,./...:.:.. ,, ,. ... (Rent,) ,:  Purpose Type I n c l . . E x t r a Heating Hot Water L i g h t i n g Cooking Fc.. Storage B. Rooms , - et.c . P r i v a t e Shared S L i v i n g Bedrm. Ki t c h e n Bath T o i l e t Other U D. S p e c i a l ' Problems ( s p e c i f y ) f o r Cramped quarters One ..Two Cooking Heating ' Washing Ge t t i n g r e p a i r s Other - 113 -1. I f sharing, with whom l i v i n g : With c h i l d r e n .. With other r e l a t i v e s .. With f r i e n d s .. Others (who are they?) 2. Are present l i v i n g arrangements the r e s u l t o f : (a)choice? ... (b) n e c e s s i t y ? ... I f (b), how would you l i k e to l i v e : With f r i e n d s .... r e l a t i v e s .... where .'. . . 3 . How long r e s i d e n t i n t h i s present accommodation? ... (Other questions, i f l e s s than l O y e a r s ) : Where was the l a s t p l a c e before t h i s ? ... How long l i v e d there... Why moved? What type.,of residence p r e v i o u s l y ? S i n g l e f a m i l y house ... apartment ... other ( s p e c i f y ) ... Ij.. P r o j e c t s a. Have you ever heard of the- West Vancouver Kiwanis V i l l a g e ? Yes ... No ... Have you ever seen the v i l l a g e ? Yes..No... Would you l i k e to l i v e i n such a pla c e ? Yes.. No ... Undecided ... Have you any views on the subject ( f o r example): Rent too high Too much l i k e an i n s t i t u t i o n .. Too many older people .... Not enough freedom allowed .... Too f a r from f r i e n d s ..... Too f a r from stores Too modern Not quiet enough b. What do you t h i n k are the most important things to consider : •, , . in.. hou sing f o r . o Id or , poople? . -(See - che ck- l i s t ) ., . . ... . . .... . ....... Budget or F a c i l i t i e s ? Would you l i k e to move i n t o a Senior C i t i z e n s p r o j e c t i f you could a f f o r d i t or do you tliink. there . are., good reasons f o r s t a y i n g where you are, q u i t e apart from the budget prob-lem  Your own budget: 1. Rent $... per month ($ ... week) 1. Taxes $ ...year 2. T o t a l c o s t , e x t r a u t i l i t i e s ' 2. Mortgage payments $ $ . . month( ) (years to go ....) 3 . What i s the most you are able to pay f o r r e n t (or would be) : per month ..furnished; per month ...unfurnished. Ji. Budgetary d i f f i c u l t i e s i n making present accommodation more s a t i s f a c t o r y i f d e s i r e to remain there :J>. In cone. from, a l l sources., |. year*, (month) . •; - •. - :.; , -. - I l k -Chores, p h y s i c a l d i f f i c u l t i e s Personal d i s s a t i s f a c t i o n s d i r e c t l y increased by housing Healthy and c h e e r f u l outlook conneoted w i t h present housing S p e c i a l f e a t u r e s or impressions HOUSING-, NEEDS AND PREFERENCES 1. What i s your view of the f o l l o w i n g items, i n choosing the place you would l i k e to l i v e i n y o u r s e l f ? Please check over a l l the items. • Items - , How: Important • Very F a i r l y Not Has few or no s t a i r s I Has l a r g e , a i r y rooms | Windows wi t h a good view ( | Clean, and easy t o clean Modern, up-to-date j Is warm i n winter Has .a,, spare bee room ,:,/:,:,-...-,- . -. .......... ; Has storage space ; . A small garden Workshop f o r hobbies A place to s i t outdoors i n f i n e weather A place to e n t e r t a i n your f r i e n d s G-ood cooking f a c i l i t i e s R e f r i g e r a t o r Lots o f c o l o u r , , - .. • .-L i v i n g near your f r i e n d s  Low i n rent Considerate l a n d l o r d iTour own property e s s e n t i a l f o r independence Freedom from any r e s t r i c t i o n s P r i v a c y Accommodation you can share w i t h r e l a t i v e or f r i e n d Quiet: freedom from noise Near a bus l i n e Near a shopping centre Near a Church Near a moyie Near,, a ; c ommun I ty : : cent re ,. club,,. o r, - other s o c i a l meeting place ' ' - 115 -Appendix C. Questionnaire used at the meeting of the West Vancouver Senior C i t i z e n s ' Club HOUSING NEEDS AND PREFERENCES Two senior students of the U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Colum-b i a (School of S o c i a l Work) — Miss MacKinnon and Mr. Angel -- are making a study of housing needs and preferences among senior c i t i z e n s i n West Vancouver. They welcome very much the co-operation of the Senior C i t i z e n s A s s o c i a t i o n , and would l i k e your help i n a p r e l i m -i n a r y survey or "opinion p o l l " which the A s s o c i a t i o n has helped to arrange. You do not have to put your name on t h i s , though i f you do you may be sure you i n f o r m a t i o n w i l l be t r e a t e d as c o n f i d -e n t i a l . I f you would be w i l l i n g to discuss the subject of housing f u r t h e r (with s p e c i a l reference to West Vancouver) In an i n t e r v i e w at your convenience, we should be happy to f o l l o w t h i s up.. • Male .... Female ... How long have In which Under 65 S i n g l e . . . Married... you l i v e d i n age-group 65 to 69 Widow ... Widower... West Van? are you? 70 or - 116 -1. What i s your view of the f o l l o w i n g items, i n choosing the place you would l i k e to l i v e i n y o u r s e l f ? (Please check over a l l the items) How. Important? Items Very F a i r l y . Not 1 Has few or no s t a i r s I Has l a r g e , a i r y rooms \Windows w i t h a good view j Cle.an, and easy to clean 1 Modern, up-to-date |Is Warm i n winter 1 Has a : spare . bedroom 1 Has storage space j j A small garden Workshop f o r hobbies A place to s i t outdoors i n f i n e weather A place to e n t e r t a i n your f r i e n d s Good cooking f a c i l i t i e s R e f r i g e r a t o r Lors of • colour. ,: , , •..., . „ , , ; ......... L i v i n g near your f r i e n d s Low i n rent Considerate l a n d l o r d Your own pro p e r t y e s s e n t i a l f o r s 1 independence Freedom from any r e s t r i c t i o n s P r i v a c y Accommodation you,can share w i t h r e l a t i v e or f r i e n d Quiet: freedom from noise Near a bus l i n e Near a shopping centre Near a Church Near a movie Near a community centre, c l u b , or other s o c i a l moet.ing.pla.ee. -r,:. Would you ."say some other Item i s more Important? ( I f so, what ?) . - in -2. Are there things about your present accommodation which make a problem f o r you? No ... Yes ... If Yes, please indicate below: House too big f o r me (us) ... Sta i r s hard to climb Too much work to clean, ec... Too f a r to walk Rent too high Inadequate kitchen Keeping up property too washing... heating Some other problems? (What?) 3. Present Kind of Accommodation: Single family house ... Apartment ... Duplex ... Converted (multiple-occupancy) house ... Hotel ... Motel ...... Boarding, house ...... Housekeeping rooms Owned .... Part l y owned .... Rented .... Living alone .... Married couple .... With r e l a t i v e s friends ........ - . . . Would you be w i l l i n g to discuss these things further? If so please give: Name: Address: Telephone Appendix-D.. Copy of the l e t t e r sent t o West Vancouver S o c i a l S e r v i c e Department c l i e n t s t h a t were i n t e r v i e w e d . CORPORATION OP THE DISTRICT OP WEST VANCOUVER F e b r u a r y ll+th, 19 f>7. Dear We are w r i t i n g you t o l e t you know t h a t M i s s MacKinnon and Mr. Jerome A n g e l , g r a d u a t e .students a t the School of S o c i a l Work, U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h C o lumbia, are t a k i n g an o p i n i o n v ' p o l l c o n c e r n i n g t h e hous-i n g needs of o l d e r p e o p l e . The q u e s t i o n n a i r e w h i c h t h e y are c o m p l e t i n g w i l l be a b s o l u t e l y c o n f i d e n t i a l and w i l l n o t be used by us. S i n c e they may be v i s i t i n g you so.on we thought you might l i k e t o know'of them and t h a t we f e e l you would be of c o n s i d e r a b l e h e l p i n t h e i r r e s e a r c h p r o j e c t . V e r y s i n c e r e l y y o u r s , c k t / k e C. K. Toren S o c i a l S e r v i c e A d m i n i s t r a t o r - 119 -Appendix E. B i b l i o g r a p h y (A) Books-American P u b l i c H e a l t h A s s o c i a t i o n , Inc., Committee on the Hygiene of Housing, Housing an Ageing P o p u l a t i o n . Lancaster Press., Inc., Lancaster, Pa., 1 9 ^ 3 -Cavan, Rugh Shonle, Ernest ¥. Burgess,.Robert J . Havighurst, and Herbert G-oldhamer, Personal Adjustment i n Old Age. Science Research A s s o c i a t e s , I n c . / C h i c a g o , 194-9. ' Donahue, Wilma, ed., Housing the-Aged. U n i v e r s i t y of Michigan Press, Ann Arbor, 1 9 5 4 -H a l l , Penelope M., The .Social S e rvices of Modern England. • Routledge and Kegan Paul L t d . , London, 1 9 5 5 • Kraus,,. Hertha- , "Housing, Our Older C i t i z e n s , " S o c i a l C o n t r i -b u t i o n by the Ageing. In American S o c i e t y of P o l i t i c a l and S o c i a l Sciences Annals, V o l . 2 7 9 , P h i l a d e l p h i a , 1 9 5 2 . Kutner,,. Bera.pr.d-, .and - others , F i v e Hundred Over S i x t y , A_ Community Survey on Ageing, R u s s e l l Sage Foundation, New York, 1 9 5 6 . St at e , o f : C a l i f o r n l a , Governor's Conference on the Problems  of the Ageing. Conference Report, October, 1 9 5 l * Sacramento, C a l i f o r n i a . Wickenden, E l i z a b e t h , Ed., The Needs of Older People. American P u b l i c Welfare A s s o c i a t i o n , Chicago, 1 9 5 3 -(B) P e r i o d i c a l s Gardner, W.P. " P s y c h i a t r y i n G e r i a t r i c s , " Minnesota Medicine, V o l . 3 3 ( A p r i l , 1 9 ^ 0 ) , pp. 3 5 3 - 3 5 9 -Math, l a s on, Go nova. "Hotter B u i l d i n g s f o r the Ageing," A r c h i t e c t u r a l Record, V o l . 119 (May, 1 9 5 6 ) , pp. 1 9 6 - 2 0 2 . Mumford, Lewis. "For . Older, People. ) Not Segregation but I n t e g r a t i o n , " A r c h i t e c t u r a l Record, V o l . 119 (May, 1 9 5 6 ) , pp. 1 9 1 ^ 1 9 ^ . - 120 -S t r a t t o n , P.R.U. "Housing f o r Senior C i t i z e n s - The Next Step," Community Planning Review, V o l . 6 (September, 1 9 5 6 ), pp. 9 7 - 1 0 2 . (C) Pamphlets and Reports Canadian Welfare C o u n c i l , Canadian Welfare, V o l . 2 8 , December, 1 9 5 2 , S p e c i a l e d i t i o n , Housing f o r Canada. Canadian Welfare C o u n c i l , Canadian Welfare, V o l . 3 1 , May, 1 9 5 5 . S p e c i a l e d i t i o n on Old Age. Community Chest and C o u n c i l of Greater Vancouver, Committee on Welfare of the Aged, Annual Report, January, 1 9 5 6 , 4 pages (mimeographed) . Family Welfare - A s s o c i a t i o n of America, I n d i v i d u a l i z e d  S e r v i c e s f o r the Aged, New York, 19l|.l. Marsh, L . C , R e b u i l d i n g a Neighbourhood, U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia, Vancouver, 1 9 5 0 . Oberlander., .H.. Peter and. I r a M. Robinson,. L i v i n g , and  Working, i n West Vancouver, B r i t i s h Columbia: An  Economic A n a l y s i s , Corporation of the M u n i c i p a l D i s t r i c t of West Vancouver, M u n i c i p a l H a l l , West Vancouver, B r i t i s h Columbia. Vancouver Housing A s s o c i a t i o n , B u i l d i n g f o r Senior C i t i z e n s , January, 1 9 5 6 . 5 pages (mimeographed). Vancouver Housing A s s o c i a t i o n , Housing f o r Our Older C i t z e n s , March 194-9, 27 pp. (mimeographed) . (D) Theses Hopkins, John Thomas, West Vancouver R e c r e a t i o n a l Survey, (Master of S o c i a l Work t h e s i s ) , The U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia, Vancouver, B r i t i s h Columbia, 1 9 5 0 . Wilson, Warren Andrew, Housing Conditions Among S o c i a l  A s s istance F a m i l i e s , (Master of S o c i a l Work t h e s i s ) , The U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia, Vancouver, B r i t i s h Columbia, 1 9 5 5 -

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