Welcome to the June 2007 Seniors Digest!
I’d like to report some great news on the legislative funding front! Advocates for older adults, family caregivers, and people with disabilities succeeded in effecting budget increases and key legislation that will benefit Washington's most vulnerable citizens. Of special note: the statewide Respite Program for family caregivers will receive an additional $2.4 million over the next two years (with King County receiving a quarter of the funding). In this issue, we will take a look at the program, and introduce Don Newman and his mother, Grace (right), one family who benefit from this program.
Other items in the biennial state budget include:
- $800,000 for Kinship Care Support (Grandparents raising Grandchildren)
- Expansion of the Long Term Care Ombudsman Program for Adult Family Homes
- $250,000 increase for the Senior Farmer’s Market Nutrition Program
- Continued funding for the Chronic Case Management Study
- Wage increase for homecare workers
- 2% provider rate increase each year for Day Health, Respite, Case Management and other community-based providers
Advocacy efforts also produced new legislation that will positively impact older adults and people with disabilities:
- Both the Public Guardianship and Disability Definitions bills passed, the later overturning a narrower Supreme Court definition of disability (see “Public Guardianship Legislation Enacted” in this issue for more).
- Significant changes are planned for training home care workers, including Respite providers. A special task force will recommend revisions to training by the end of this year.
Please take a moment to write or call your legislators to thank them for their support. Now is a great time for them to hear from you.
Also in this issue of Seniors Digest:
- Lillian Hayashi’s “Next Chapter” in a Lifetime of Service
- First Northwest Forum on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Aging Issues to be held on June 15
- Warning! Caregiving Can Be Hazardous to Your Health
- “Don’t Let Hazards Trip You Up” Home Fall Protection Wordfind
For More Information….
Check out SeniorsDigest.org, our national companion website. The Seniors Digest Resource Center is a great place to begin your search for information about issues of interest to seniors and their families.
We hope you will refer to our electronic pages often—to obtain advice, to learn of new and exciting services, and to offer us your constructive feedback.
Read Seniors Digest and tell us what you think. We are here to help.
Don Moreland, Chair
Seattle-King County Advisory Council
on Aging and Disability Services
The Advisory Council is saddened to announce the passing of Gabe Cohen, former ADS Advisory Council member.
Gabe served on the Advisory Council on Aging and Disability Services for almost six years, serving as Vice-Chair of the Council and Chair of the Outreach and Advocacy Committee. He was instrumental in the Advisory Council researching the issue of elder fraud, which led to the Council joining the Washington Responsible Lending Coalition in 2005. He left the Advisory Council for health reasons in August of 2005.
Gabe is survived by his wife Anita, son Michael, daughters Mina and Debby and several grandchildren. He will be sorely missed. He energized our meetings with his passion for fairness, his advocacy of solutions to meet the needs of all ages, and his commitment to inclusion.