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Fighting to Preserve Livable Home Modification Grants

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Speaker Mattiello 401-222-2466 / Senate President Ruggerio-401-222-6655

An Open Letter to Speaker Mattiello and Senate President Ruggerio

On behalf of our more than 132,000 Rhode Island members and their families, AARP Rhode Island is calling on our state’s leaders to maintain the current budget allocations for the Livable Home Modification Grant Program in 2021. We realize that the pandemic is forcing difficult budgeting decisions for the state legislature, but this program is simply too important to the hundreds of thousands of older and disabled residents in Rhode Island.

First initiated by AARP, the program provides grants to older Rhode Islanders and those with disabilities to modify their home with wheelchair ramps, chair lifts, and walk-in roll-in showers, allowing them to age how and where they want. And for most, that is in their home and community instead of a nursing home.

This will become even more important to older Rhode Islanders as we address the new normal brought on by COVID-19.

To keep them safe, some older Rhode Islanders have been moved out of nursing homes, and families are reconsidering nursing homes altogether. But without the Livable Home Modification Grant Program, their home will not be a safe or accessible place for older loved ones to live.

Additional benefits of the Livable Home Modification Program include:

•Keeping people in their own home and not nursing homes saves state taxpayer dollars by reducing state Medicaid costs.

• These home modifications, like walk-in/roll-in showers, chair lifts, and wheelchair ramps, become permanent assets for future homeowners.

• Addressing these home modifications will reduce falls, which represent the leading cause of injury hospitalizations in Rhode Island, and most of these people are age 65 and over.

The Livable Home Modification Grant program is a critical lifeline for the thousands of families who choose to keep their loved ones at home instead of a nursing home. We implore you to maintain the $500,000 earmarked in the budget for this important program.

Kathleen Connell
State Director, AARP Rhode Island

Ask state leaders to preserve Rhode Island Livable Homes Modification Grants

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CALL

Speaker Mattiello 401-222-2466 / Senate President Ruggerio-401-222-6655

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