As a compassionate society, it’s critically important that we don’t allow non-digital services to disappear as seniors grapple with the challenges of new technology

Social media icons on a smartphoneJeff Chiu/Associated Press

Wanda Morris

I was walking down Vancouver’s Broadway Street when I was stopped short at the sight of a police officer subduing and handcuffing a woman on the sidewalk.
Her skin was pale, her clothes ragged, her voice rough and her accent suggested years spent in a tough neighbourhood.

But it was her words that arrested me: “I just wanted to borrow her phone.” I didn’t see the events that led to the takedown, but I imagined the woman had first asked for another’s phone, then tried to take it by force.

This happened a decade ago, but even then, phone booths had largely disappeared from their traditional habitat of street corners and shopping malls.

I remember thinking in dismay that the wonders of technology had led to the privatization of phones, and those who didn’t have their own were being left behind.

This was, of course, a logical response to the proliferation of cellphones. But logical responses aren’t always ideal ones. I’ve just returned from a trip to London (England) where phone booths, while…

This article was sourced from the National Post.

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