NY Legislature Recognizes Value of Supporting Independence for Seniors
(3/14/2014) – Every day seniors and their caregivers reach out to their local offices for the aging and community agencies for information, assistance and services, and today they have a better chance of receiving those services, thanks to the New York State Legislature.
The Senate and Assembly this week released their versions of the State’s 2014-15 budget and each one-house budget proposal includes additional funding -- $5 million on the Senate side and $1 million on the Assembly side -- for the Community Services for the Elderly (CSE) program, a flexible funding stream that enables local offices for the aging and community-based agencies to address areas of greatest need within their communities.
The Association on Aging in NY (Aging-NY), Council of Senior Centers and Services (CSCS), Lifespan, and NYS Coalition for the Aging (NYSCA) applaud the Senate and Assembly for recognizing the value of the long terms supports and services, especially in light of the growing aging population. Every county but one in New York State experienced growth in their senior populations between 2000 and 2010, according to the US Census. The four groups joined together to request an additional $26 million in this year's state budget for the CSE program in an effort to deplete waiting lists at local offices for the aging. The additional CSE funding is a good start toward investing in what is needed to help the 7,000 seniors currently on waiting lists for services across the state.
“We are all grateful that both the NYS Senate and Assembly clearly recognize the needs of older adults. This funding is needed to assist older New Yorkers who spent years of their lives making our communities a better place to live. We applaud the Legislature for their commitment and recognition of the needs of older adults,” said Ann Marie Cook, President/CEO of Lifespan of Greater Rochester, and President of the New York State Coalition for the Aging.
“The additional CSE funds will address areas of greatest need at the local level, including in-home personal care, medical transportation, and nutritious meals. The Senate and Assembly acknowledged the value of these services in each of the one-house bills,” said Laura Cameron, Executive Director of the Association on Aging in New York. “The demand for services continues to escalate, fueled by a growing senior population. Enhancing these vital services will make it possible for more New York residents to remain in their homes and communities as they get older. That’s good for them - and it’s good for New York.”
“On behalf of the thousands of older New Yorkers who struggle to age in place with dignity in their homes, the Council of Senior Centers and Services appreciates the recognition by the NY State Senate and Assembly of the growing unmet needs of senior citizens,” said Igal Jellinek, Executive Director of the Council of Senior Centers and Services. “Providing additional funding for services to allow older adults to remain at home also supports family caregivers. This funding is a sound state investment.”Contact:
Association on Aging in NY: Laura Cameron (518) 424-2556 or Sheila Carmody (518) 366-6148
Council of Senior Centers and Services of NYC: Bobbie Sackman (917) 690-2805
Lifespan & NYS Coalition for the Aging: Ann Marie Cook (585) 750-8680