Minister Tassi and Minister Petitpas Taylor announce new National Seniors Council members

News release

August 7, 2018                      Gatineau, Quebec            Employment and Social Development Canada

Seniors are an important part of our social fabric and contribute to the rich diversity of Canada. That’s why our Government is committed to seeking expert advice on seniors’ issues so that older Canadians can age with dignity, in the best health possible and with social and economic security.

Today, the Honourable Filomena Tassi, Minister of Seniors, and the Honourable Ginette Petitpas Taylor, Minister of Health, are pleased to announce the appointment of four new members to the National Seniors Council (NSC). Following an open, transparent and merit-based selection process, the newly appointed members will advise the Government of Canada on matters related to the health, well-being and quality of life of seniors. The NSC plays a key role in consulting with Canadians, undertakes activities such as commissioning research, and provides advice to the Government on seniors-related policy priorities.

The new members are:

  • Jean-Pierre Gagné – Professor, École d’orthophonie et d’audiologie, faculté de médicine, Université de Montréal.

  • Nora Spinks – Chief Executive Officer, Vanier Institute of the Family.

  • Cindy Starnino – Director of Academic Affairs, Integrated Health and Social Services University Network of West-Central Montreal.

  • Martine Lagacé – Professor, Communication, Faculty of Arts, University of Ottawa


“I am proud of the expertise the National Seniors Council brings to current and emerging issues related to the health and well-being of seniors. The Council continues to provide comprehensive advice and understanding so that seniors across the country can have access to quality programs and services. It is important to work collaboratively to ensure we do the right thing for our seniors.”
– The Honourable Filomena Tassi, Minister of Seniors

“It is my pleasure to welcome the new members of the National Seniors Council. Their expertise and experience will help the Council to carry out its important role, and help us to address the diverse and changing needs of Canadians who are living longer than ever before.”
The Honourable Ginette Petitpas Taylor, Minister of Health

Quick facts

  • Seniors are the fastest growing demographic group in Canada. By 2031, the number of seniors will reach almost 9 million people, representing close to one quarter of Canada's population.

  • Since 2007, the NSC has examined issues related to the social isolation of seniors, the participation of older workers in the labour force, positive and active aging, volunteerism, low income among seniors, and elder abuse.

  • As announced by the Prime Minister in February 2016, the Government is committed to open and transparent processes for selecting GIC appointees. The selection approach is merit-based. It is designed to identify highly qualified candidates who are committed to the principles of public service and embrace public service values, all while striving to achieve regional representation and gender parity.

Associated links


Annabelle Archambault
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Seniors

Media Relations Office
Employment and Social Development Canada

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