— Retirement should be a time of peace and relaxation, not one of struggle and financial worry. And when retirees seek advice regarding retirement investments, they should expect their professional advisors to give prudent guidance that keeps their best interests in mind. But low- and middle-income Texans currently lack adequate protections with their retirement savings. The previous administration updated and strengthened a Department of Labor fiduciary rule to require financial advisors to act in clients’ best interest rather than their own. …

— Texans taking care of a loved one released from a hospital or rehabilitation facility would receive caregiver information and training, under a bill filed this week in the Texas Legislature. Known as the CARE Act, the legislation would guarantee that family caregivers receive consultation in medical tasks, such as how to dress a wound or administer medications, to ensure that they can safely provide care when their loved ones return home. State Rep. Four Price (R-Amarillo) filed House Bill 2425. …

— Many families of Mexican heritage observe Día de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, as a time to visit the resting place of deceased loved ones, bringing along earthly delights that the departed once enjoyed. Family gravesites are carpeted with flowers, liquor, sweets, even cigarettes, and mariachi bands roam from headstone to headstone as they play favorite tunes. At home, altars are adorned with marigolds, photographs, food, candles and decorative sugar skulls in preparation for the day when a …

— It’s the season for severe storms in Texas, and AARP is alerting consumers about potential home repair ripoffs and other scams following natural disasters. It’s unfortunate, but the aftermath of a disaster attracts opportunists and scammers. Now is an important time for Texans to ready their homes, families and businesses for the worst that Mother Nature may throw their way–and to protect themselves from fraud. Too often, criminals pose as insurance inspectors, government officials or building contractors to prey on …

— For generations, Social Security has provided much needed earned benefits to the people who have paid into the system. While many are able to rely on these funds today, this vital social safety net may not be there for future generations. Social Security needs to be updated for the 21st century. If our leaders don’t act, future retirees could lose up $10,000 a year. AARP realizes the urgency of the situation, which is why we are asking all presidential candidates …

Franklin Beauty School 100 year celebration, group picture

— For 100 years, Houston’s historic Franklin Beauty School has helped students learn new job skills and launch careers and dreams. This family-owned, workforce development institute has not only graduated a legion of entrepreneurs and leaders, but it has also been a beacon of pride for the state of Texas. School founder Madam N.A. Franklin and AARP founder Dr. Ethel Percy Andrus had a lot in common. Not only where they women from the Midwest, one settling in Houston and the …

— Virginia Alves and Mark Hollis AARP Texas Across the country, and right here in Texas, cities are striving to become great places for people of all ages. Leaders of several cities have signed on as members of the AARP Network of Age-Friendly communities, and those communities are already starting to act. Austin is one such city, and according to a newly released report by the Milken Institute, a nonpartisan think tank, Austin ranks as one of the best cities in …

— That’s how many Texans were kept out of poverty by Social Security income each year, on average, from 2010 to 2012, according to an AARP Public Policy Institute report. Of those, 871,000 were 65 or older. Nationally, Social Security kept more than 22 million people out of poverty; over 15 million were 65-plus.

— AARP Texas applauds a move by Houston Mayor Annise Parker (D) to make streets in the nation’s fourth-largest city more user-friendly for everyone. By executive order in October, the mayor called for “complete streets,” a policy that directs city officials and transportation planners to consider all users when designing or repairing roads—including motorists, pedestrians, bicyclists, people with disabilities and those using public transportation. The goal is to create walkable neighborhoods with sidewalks, crosswalks, benches, nighttime lighting and daytime shade. Such …

— During the last three weeks I’ve truly lived up to the term “Road Warrior.” This week it’s Atlanta for a series of meetings and part of the AARP Life@50 event. If you haven’t had a chance to attend in the past  definitely mark your calendars for 2014 and  join us for one of these action-packed information-filled extravaganzas! Since 2002 I have attend most of these, and now that AARP has moved to two events a year, I am excited to see what …