Ask your legislator to pass a budget that protects seniors & values family caregivers at http://bit.ly/AARPProtectSeniors2018.

AARP Connecticut State Director Nora Duncan provided the following statement in regards to Governor Dannel P. Malloy’s budget proposal and the next steps in the budget process:

“Over the last several years, senior safety net programs have been eviscerated and the compounding effect has taken its toll on seniors and family caregivers,” said Duncan. “Connecticut’s elected legislators must not turn their back on our seniors and family caregivers, who have already made enormous sacrifices to balance the budget. Sacrifice is needed, but every year the cuts hit the same seniors – the ones with the least financial ability to pay – multiple times and threatens their ability to age with dignity and independence at home.

“There are a few bright spots in Governor Malloy’s budget that recognize the value of helping vulnerable seniors age in community, rather than in more expensive institutional care. It is encouraging to see a small investment in both subsidized assisted living and in Money Follows the Person, however these investments don’t negate the damage that has been and continues to be done.”

Without appropriate support, the health of vulnerable adults will decline faster and require more expensive health care services, resulting in an increase in expensive emergency room visits, nursing home placement and hospitalizations, and people qualifying more quickly for higher levels of care.

AARP urges legislative leaders from both parties to reject another year of harmful cuts to seniors and pass a budget that:

• Fully funds the Connecticut Home Care Program for Elders so our most fragile seniors can age-in-place;
• Restores the Medicare Savings Program and ensure seniors have access to affordable health care and prescription drug coverage;
• Increases funding for Alzheimer’s respite care so family caregivers can balance their jobs and family responsibilities;
• Supports core senior services that make basic necessities like food, housing and home care affordable.

Duncan added, “Connecticut’s seniors deserve the chance to live – and age – with dignity and independence at their home. We ask the legislators to pursue a budget that will cost-effectively address our aging population, not one that will diminish their quality of life or safety with additional cuts.”