Center hopes to help elders and their families with tough decisions

NORWICH – As the population ages, more elders and their loved ones are reaching a crossroads.

They’re faced with questions about health care, safety, independence and money – questions that don’t have easy answers.

Just talking about these issues can sometimes be the hardest part, representatives from the Dispute Resolution Center of Chenango, Delaware and Otsego counties say.

“Older adults and their families are increasingly involved with inter-generational decisions, dependencies, and disputes,” said Donna Kankiewicz, head of volunteer support and development with Dispute Resolution, last week. “Familiar issues may be related to dignity, health, well-being, autonomy, identity, socialization, safety, self-determination and relationships. Changes in living arrangements and health care providers may require difficult decision making.”

To help open up dialogue between families, the Dispute Resolution Center is looking to start an Elder Mediation and Dialogue program, where seniors and their families can bring challenges, concerns and disagreements to the discussion table.

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