As Greg Kaufmann expertly deconstructs in his post This Week in Poverty: The Older Americans Act and US Seniors, “Signed into law by President Lyndon Johnson in 1965 at the same time as Medicare and Medicaid, the Older Americans Act provides federal funding for essential senior services like job training, caregiver support, transportation, preventative healthcare, meals and protection from abuse and financial exploitation. Funding for the legislation has failed to keep pace with inflation and population growth for decades. Under sequestration, an additional $40 million will be cut from senior meal programs alone, which means that as many as 19 million fewer meals will be available to seniors who need them.”
This immoral attack on one of the most vulnerable segments of our society is a social injustice that lends itself to the accusation of genocide. Poor seniors living on an already sub-standard fixed income have absolutely no flexibility in their budgets. To entice this group to construct a means of survival around the promise of a nation, by way of the OAA, that they will not be forgotten or forsaken, only to have that contract callously and cowardly voided by Congress due to sequestration is beyond contempt.
Again, from Kaufmann’s article. “Sanders, chairman of the Senate Subcommittee on Primary Health and Aging, noted in his opening remarks that OAA “programs not only work to ease isolation, hunger and suffering, they also save taxpayers substantial sums of money. It doesn’t take a genius to figure it out,” said Sanders, with characteristic bluntness. “If you’re malnourished, you’re going to get sick more often. You may end up in the emergency room at great expense to Medicaid…If you’re weak and you fall and break your hip, you end up in the hospital, at an expense of tens and tens of thousands of dollars…We can feed a senior for an entire year for the cost of one day in a hospital.”
For the full article please follow this link.