Tuesday 2 May 2023

A Proclamation on Older Americans Month, 2023

"On this 60th anniversary of Older Americans Month, we honor our Nation’s senior citizens, whose lifetimes of hard work, devotion to family, and commitment to community have laid the foundation for the country we are today. We have a rock-solid responsibility to ensure our Nation’s seniors can age with dignity and financial security.

When President John F. Kennedy issued the first proclamation recognizing older Americans, approximately a third of seniors lived in poverty, and close to half were without health insurance. Our Nation rallied together to confront this crisis, passing Medicare to deliver affordable, quality health care to our seniors; strengthening Social Security, the bedrock of American retirement; and ultimately raising so many seniors out of poverty. We extended lifespans and provided critical breathing room to Americans who had worked hard their whole lives. But there is still more work to do to ensure that no senior lies in bed at night wondering how they are going to pay for lifesaving drugs, put food on the table, or support their children and grandchildren. (...)

We must keep building on this progress. Older Americans should be able to live, work, and participate in their communities with dignity. That’s why I recently signed an Executive Order on Increasing Access to High-Quality Care and Supporting Caregivers. I call on the Congress to expand on the investments we have already made to help seniors receive care in their own homes and to support family caregivers — including aging caregivers — and the home care workers who perform selfless work every day. I also call on the Congress to expand access to nutrition counseling for seniors and others with Medicare coverage, to increase funding for nutrition services for older adults, and to pilot coverage of medically tailored meals in Medicare — actions that are also part of my Administration’s National Strategy on Hunger, Nutrition, and Health. We need to improve the quality and safety of nursing homes and protect vulnerable residents and the health care heroes who care for them. And we must keep pushing to end cancer as we know it and win the fight against other deadly diseases that deny us time with those we love most. 

Older Americans are the pillars of our community, and we owe it to them to value their wisdom, celebrate their contributions, and champion their well-being. To older Americans across this Nation, we will always support you. (...)"

Joe Biden

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photograph by Andy Sweet via