The following podcast is an excerpt of a chat between members who attend Good Morning Gorgie, a group for older people run by the voluntary organisation Health all Round. The discussion was led by Caroline Gibb (EaRN Development Worker).
Member: I just didn’t like that word dementia “Tax”
Member: We heard on the radio this morning about dementia “Tax” and she went, “what’s all that about? I don’t like that name.”
Member: It’s a bit discriminating isn’t it?
Member: I think it’s a horrible expression.
Member: It’s trying to bring home the injustices of some of these things really, it’s just an emotive term.
Member: It’s the word I didn’t like, why call it that word?
Caroline: I think it’s been called that by opposition parties who feel it’s like being taxed for having an illness.
Member: Why should you be taxed for having an illness? Especially one you don’t know you have.
Member: An illness you can’t do anything about.
Member: If you had a sore arm, a sore leg or were in a wheelchair you would get all the sympathy in the world.
Member: You’ve not done it because you wanted to, it’s something you can do nothing about.
Member: When I was in Canada, there is a group called Invisible Disabilities and there are way more of these than there are “visible” disabilities, and this is part of it – because if people look at you and think “she is a normal person” and treat you as normal, if the other person was aware they would probably treat you a little differently.
Member: But you should be treated as normal.
Member: What’s normal?
Member: You shouldn’t treat anyone any different we are all just people. They are just an individual.
Member: Of course, they’re human beings.
Caroline: Would anyone else like to say anything?
Member: I think we have progressed down the road a whole lot. Lots of issues have been addressed but not fully addressed. We’ve still got poverty, we’ve still got a lack of housing, and people who’ve got no houses at all. Some people are earning no money at all but having to live in a big city like Edinburgh. Some people have got far too much money its obscene, why doesn’t the government go after these people and stop paying people at the bottom paltry sums of money? Some of these homeless people have got more pride than those at the top echelons of society. A whole lot of people who are in the bottom echelons not even making a liveable salary and having to depend on soup kitchens – these are the inequalities that still exist, it’s sad. I think they need to come nearer to the middle, the ones at the top. That’s my resume.