May 1, 2023 Washington, DC — As this year’s Older Americans Month (OAM) celebration commences, LeadingAge, the association of nonprofit providers of aging services, reiterates its call for the creation of a White House Office on Aging Policy that ensures our country’s older adults and their families can access the critically needed supports and services that help them remain engaged, independent, and included.
“Our country is aging; by 2040, nearly one quarter of Americans will be 65 or older. We need leadership and vision to focus on the issues relevant to this growing cohort of our population. Older Americans Month is the perfect time for our leaders to ensure that taxpayer-supported resources, services, and programs are coordinated and delivered to the people who need them,” said Katie Smith Sloan, president and CEO of LeadingAge. “A White House Office on Aging Policy makes sense and is in keeping with the Biden Administration’s commitment to older Americans and their families.”
Responsibilities within the federal government for policies related to older adults are spread across more than 25 agencies, Sloan notes, and, while some aging policies within those agencies are robust, there are also policy redundancies, gaps, and an inconsistent distribution of resources.
“The result of the country’s scattered approach is severely inadequate support for older adults, which impacts quality of life and takes extraordinary tolls on communities and families—particularly those of color,” she added. “As we celebrate older adults throughout May, let’s also do everything we can to support them and their families. The Biden Administration has the opportunity to drive change and further demonstrate its commitment to a growing population of Americans—so they truly can Age Unbound.”
Read the December 2022 letter sent to President Biden here and the full White House Office on Aging Policy brief here.