Greetings from Lori Parham, AARP Maine State Director

As the New Year gets underway, I am happy to share our latest member newsletter with you. 2018 was quite a year for AARP in Maine. Our team of staff, volunteers and member activists worked tirelessly to highlight urgent issues that impact 50+ Mainers at the state and federal levels during the elections.  We hosted many programs around the state to bring your voices to both Augusta and Washington.  We also offered over 150 social, community and cultural events in locations across Maine.  As of this note, 62 communities have committed to becoming more age-friendly by joining our Network of Age-Friendly Communities. As you will see in this edition, we aren’t slowing down as we gear up for 2019!

The new two-year legislative session has just begun with a new Governor and many new legislators. We are already hard at work in Augusta advocating on the issues you told us were important to you. Our recent survey of AARP Maine advocates listed health care and aging in place as key concerns. We are excited to share that after years of advocacy to increase affordable senior housing, a first step was taken this week when Governor Mills released 15,000,000 in bonds approved by you to support senior housing. While there is more to do, this is a great first step. If you have an interest in state politics or policy, we can always use volunteer support as we work the capitol halls and work back home in the local districts. You can view our legislative priorities here.

Our team of staff and volunteers will continue to work for you in our nation’s capital as well. We are already engaging leaders on bringing down the skyrocketing costs of prescription drugs and we will continue to fight to make sure that Medicare and Social Security are protected for current and future enrollees.

You will be happy to know that we will offer a wide range of member get-togethers again in 2019.  We hope you will check out the latest opportunities to connect with AARP members in your area. You have shared that you are enjoying these social, fun events and we look forward to meeting and visiting with you soon!

Are you looking for ways to get involved and help others? It doesn’t matter where you live. We have many ways for you to connect with and work with us. Just send an email to me@aarp.org. The more voices speaking up on these issues, the better! We will have a lot of fun working together, too.

As always, we love hearing from you. I welcome your feedback and ideas, and hope you will let us know if there is anything you need.

Warmest wishes for a happy and healthy New Year,

Lori

Image: AARP Maine Staff