Advocacy Day – Support Age Equality Budget for Older Adults and Caregivers

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Media Contacts

Bobbie Sackman, Director of Public  Policy, 212 398-6565 x226bsackman@liveon-ny.org,   Margie Schustack, Communications/LiveOn NY,917 406-4478   mschustack@liveon-ny.org

 20TH LIVEON NY ADVOCACY DAY – MAY 6, 2015

OVER 350 OLDER ADULTS FROM 130 SENIOR CENTERS, NORCS AND OTHER PROGRAMS IN NEW YORK MEET WITH MEMBER OF THE NY CITY COUNCIL ADVOCATING FOR AN EXECUTIVE BUDGET THAT SHOWS NEW YORK CITY’S COMMITMENT TO OUR AGING COMMUNITY.

ONE IN 5 SENIORS IN NYC LIVE IN POVERTY.

On the 20th anniversary of the LiveOn NY’s (formerly CSCS) Advocacy Dayfor Older NewYorkers, the largest turnout ever of older adults from 130 senior centers, converged on City Hall and met with 45 Councilmembers to advocate on their own behalf.  Older New Yorkers are the fastest growingpopulation in the City. From 2000 to 2030 their numbers will double to 1.84 million, about onein five New Yorkers. Current resources do not allow senior services staff to connect with the broad array of needs of ever changing immigrant groups, diverse populations and caregivers. The $33.7 million budget priorities for FY 16 reflect community supports for all older New Yorkers.

“Today is the 20th anniversary of Advocacy Day, said Igal Jellinek, Executive Director of LiveOn NY. For these last 20 years, LiveOn NY’s Advocacy Day has led the way in support of the needs older adults in New York. The need is even greater now.   As New Yorkers live longer and continue to age in place, increased support for older and adults and caregivers is essential. It is imperative that government funding keep pace. By investing, now, in programs that will keep seniors safe and healthy in their own communities, we will be saving millions of dollars in future costs to government.”

Bobbie Sackman, LiveOn NY, Director of Public Policy and leader of Advocacy Day states, “LiveOn NY’s central premise is that everyone, no matter their age, has a future worth investing in. It is the responsibility of city government to invest  adequately in services across the lifespan. Our meetings today demonstrate that older New Yorkers want to remain actively engaged in their communities and families. Standing up to inequality for all generations should be a hallmark for the administration and City Council.”

BUDGET PRIORITIES

  • Access to affordable elder care and support for family caregivers are the workforce issues of the 21st century, especially for women. Thousands of women and men are forced to leave work to care for elderly parents making funding for supportive services for caregivers critical.
  • Remove Unacceptable Waiting Lists–Case management waiting lists of 2000 homebound elderly individuals for case management, over 500 for home care, and a fully utilized meals-on-wheels system risking the return of waiting lists, sends a clear message that the city needs do more to serve seniors and caregivers.
  • Elder Abuse – We have just begun the fight to bring elder abuse into the daylight and fund services for the 120,000 elder abuse victims suffering behind closed doors.
  • Use this link for a complete list of budget priorities -http://www.liveon-ny.org/files/FY16_city_budget.pdf

Per Council Member Margaret Chin, Chair of the Committee on Aging – “It is imperative that the Mayor increase city funding for senior services, particularly for core programs currently funded by the City Council year to year. Close to one out of five seniors in our city live in poverty. If we’re serious about making this city affordable and livable for all New Yorkers, it is time to make our senior services a real priority.”

“With a rapidly growing senior population, how can we as a City be expected to provide them with the best care and services while faced with stagnant funding that does not reflect that growth? The answer, quite simply, is that we cannot,” stated Council Member Paul Vallone, Chair of the Subcommittee on Senior Centers. “I am proud to stand here united with LiveOnNY and all our advocates for seniors in urging the Mayor to provide additional funding for senior services and create a truly responsible executive budget that reflects our priority and commitment to the aging community.”

ABOUT LiveOn NY: LiveOn NY, formerly the Council of Senior Centers and Services (CSCS), is a non-profit organization recognized as a leader in making New York State a better place to age. Founded in 1979, it is recognized as a leader in aging that connects resources, advocates for positive change, and builds, supports and fosters innovation. With over 100 member organizations providing community based services through more than 600 programs, LiveOn NY’s members range from individual community-based centers to large multi-service, citywide organizations. Our goal is to help all New Yorkers age with confidence, grace and vitality.

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