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BLOG: See You On the Steps of City Hall - AARP Launches NYC-Based Lobbying Effort

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Having grown up in New York City, I have experienced the rapidly changing dynamics of our great city for more than half a century. As I look to age into my next 50 years in NYC, I realize that none of these changing dynamics have been as fundamental as the generational shifts. So as a charter member of the Baby Boomers and a lifelong New Yorker I understand why Generation X and Boomers have “High Anxiety” about how they can afford to age in NYC AARP NY has the unique opportunity to impact the lives of the current aging cohort and of the generations that will follow them. This year marks the commitment that AARP will be on the ground, in all five Boroughs and on the steps of City Hall fighting for AARP NY’s 750,000 members in NYC on issues that matter to them and future generations of New Yorkers.

I was very pleased that this commitment was covered in yesterday’s Crain’s article, and I want to emphasize how AARP’s new efforts are aimed at the economic security of a broad swath of New Yorkers: Gen-Xers, Boomers, and the Greatest Generation.

The first Gen-Xers started turning 50 this year. They face even more challenges than previous generations in finding and keeping affordable housing, saving money, paying off their debts and planning for retirement. In New York City, 68% of Gen-Xers say they vote in local or state elections. And they are truly the new sandwich generation—caring for adult children, grandchildren and aging parents. That’s why we need to ensure that this city is a place where all New Yorkers can afford to live by advocating for policies that increase affordable housing, create innovative ways to save for retirement, and help those who are caring for a family member. Below are some excerpts, you can read the full article online:

August 19, 2015

Crain's New York Business - The Insider

AARP launching city-based lobbying effort

The nation's leading advocacy group for the elderly plans to get active in the five boroughs, where the aging population is expected to grow by 40% over 25 years.

"We have never taken the full weight of AARP and brought it to bear on New York City," said Beth Finkel, the group's New York state director. "Now we're going to be out on the steps of City Hall, where our members want us to be."

Much of the group's lobbying to date has focused on the federal and state governments, where it helped win protections against predatory lending and new regulations for assisted-living facilities. But Ms. Finkel said with the growth in the city's senior population, and the need for more attention from local policymakers, the move to launch a city-centric initiative made sense.

"Before we have not really weighed in on [city] policy," she said. The decision was made after the group surveyed voters across New York aged 35 to 69 earlier this year and found particular anxiety among city residents on issues such as retirement, housing and affordability.”

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