Aging Today: Tax ‘Reform’ Puts Elders & the Safety Net At Risk, (April 9, 2018). Even a few months into 2018, policymakers, reporters, economists, accountants and ordinary Americans are still working to understand the impact of the tax law that Republicans passed in a mad rush at the end of 2017. Little attention, however, is being paid to how the new law affects older adults. Kevin Prindiville goes over three things about the new tax bill that should worry advocates for older adults.
Oakland, CA – Justice in Aging is pleased to announce a new outreach, education and advocacy project in the San Francisco Bay Area that will improve access to Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and In Home Supportive Services (IHSS) for low-income seniors residing in Alameda and Contra Costa Counties.
SSI and IHSS are programs that provide an important lifeline to low-income older adults. SSI provides vital basic income support to extremely low-income older adults and people with disabilities to pay for food, shelter, and other necessities. In Alameda County 52,820 people rely on SSI, and Contra Costa County is home to 26,658 SSI recipients. IHSS is a life changing and life sustaining program for over 25,000 people in Alameda and Contra Costa Counties. The program provides personal care services to seniors and people with disabilities who need help with activities of daily living in order to remain at home and in their communities.
During last night’s Democratic debate, Gwen Ifill shared a question from Farheen Hakeem about senior poverty. While both the Democratic and GOP debates and have discussed poverty and income inequality, Farheen’s question was the first specifically focused on senior poverty. Farheen is a 40-year-old woman who works for a nonprofit organization in Wisconsin. She asked:
“My father gets just $16 in food assistance per month as part of Medicaid’s family community program in Milwaukee County for low-income seniors. How will you as president work to ensure low-income seniors get their basic needs?”
The first, an Atlantic article, projects a shocking rise in senior poverty between now and 2050. Renowned economist, Teresa Ghilarducci from the New School for Social Research, used current rates of senior poverty to determine that unless we take action now to strengthen our country’s retirement system, 25 million elderly Americans will be poor in 2050. That’s more people than the entire populations of Florida, New York, and 46 other states (only California and Texas currently have more than 25 million people living in them).
Over 220 advocates, partners, supporters, attorneys, friends, and family members joined us at our sold-out award reception, Celebrate Justice in Aging, at City Club Los Angeles. The event was a chance for us to celebrate our new name, recognize shared commitment to fighting senior poverty, and rally together for Justice in Aging for all people.
WASHINGTON, DC – In the just released Seniors and Poverty and Opportunity Profile (PDF) from Half in Ten and the National Senior Citizens Law Center, you will find out that 15 percent of American seniors — people aged 65 and older– are living in poverty, a disproportionate number of whom are women and people of color. Nearly 20 percent of today’s seniors are economically vulnerable.
The future isn’t bright for Baby Boomers; tomorrow’s seniors will increasingly struggle with poverty and economic insecurity including homelessness and hunger unless we provide proper assistance and support.