Across Oregon, from the high deserts to the temperate coast, Oregonians love their communities and envision a future where they can continue to live and thrive where they live. That is the overwhelming conclusion of the Building a Communities for All Ages: Age-Friendly Oregon listening tour that AARP Oregon conducted in the summer and fall of 2019. Findings from the statewide tour, which included community conversations in thirteen communities spanning the state, as well as interviews with community leaders and subject matter experts representing diverse sectors and geographies, will be available for distribution in May 2019.
What happens when we are not able to drive or use public transit? How do we get around to meet our everyday needs and stay connected in to our community? AARP research tell us that transportation and mobility options are fundamental to our well-being as we grow older. But too often, lack of accessible, reliable transportation options keep older adults and people with disabilities from participating in everyday activities or meeting basic needs.
On February 28, Governor Kate Brown signed into law Senate Bill 608 to stop unchecked rent increases. AARP Oregon proudly supported the bill and worked for a number of years along with many other advocates across the state to make sure that people who rent their homes are protected from no-cause evictions and rapid increases in the rent of their homes. Hundreds of AARP volunteer leaders and activists from around the state contacted their legislators in support of the bill.
The unprecedented housing crisis we are experiencing here in Oregon has meant that we hear a great deal about the lack affordable housing in our communities. As the single biggest item on most household budgets, the rising cost of housing impacts the well being of people of all ages and abilities, especially those living on fixed and low incomes. For many, paying rent or mortgage means going without medication or food. For other still, increasing housing costs can mean displacement or even homelessness. So it is exciting that local municipalities, state policy makers, and housing advocates are working together to devise bold solutions to address housing affordability in our communities, from increasing housing production through allowing innovative and new types of housing, protecting renters from skyrocketing rents, to preserving and funding affordable housing.
Parks and public places bring people together, help create a sense of place, and build community. Parks are the cornerstone of age-friendly and livable communities. Portland Parks & Recreation is already a treasure for the city, but as our region grows, it is timely to be thinking about the future of parks in the city and the region. AARP is excited to support Portland Parks Foundation’s Green Dreams: Seeding Portland’s Next Parks Movement series this March.
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