Opinion: Peace of mind for the village people

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Catherine Carter.
Catherine Carter.
THE decision to move into a retirement village is a big one – for residents and their families, and the highest standards of accommodation, amenity and support are essential.

That is why a new accreditation scheme – the Lifemark Village Scheme – has been developed for retirement village owners and developers.

The scheme ensures retirement village operators are accountable and responsive to residents, and gives residents confidence that their village is being managed ethically and professionally.

Unlike aged care, where accreditation is compulsory and regulated, retirement village accreditation is voluntary and entirely industry-driven – evidence of providers’ commitment to excellence.

Lifemark goes beyond an operator’s legal obligations. The new scheme contains the highest standards of any accreditation program in the industry’s history. It measures the most important aspects of village life including services, respect of dignity and safety.

Lifemark recognises that consumers and governments expect human-service industries to have high operational standards and it covers all aspects of the retirement village experience, including the performance of staff, the quality of the food and catering, security and even social activities.

With Canberra’s cohort of people who are 65-plus tipped to make up nearly 15 per cent of the population by 2023, it makes sense that we should have complete confidence in our future housing choices. What better time to live it up!

Catherine Carter is ACT executive director of the Property Council of Australia


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Catherine Carter
Former ACT executive director of the Property Council of Australia


  1. For the past 19 years my now elderly mother has been living in a supposedly purpose built retirement village. This village was new when she moved in so it was long after architects became aware of disability specific design and yet there is very little evidence of this.
    I have been concerned for a long time that the design, construction and running of these kinds of establishments is not regulated or at least poorly regulated.
    There are design faults in these particular units that go beyond being unfriendly to elderly and non-ambulant people but are downright dangerous and yet the particular organisation is still reselling the units as being fit for elderly people.
    Peter Gamble

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