By the year 2030, New Mexico will rank fourth in the nation in percentage of population age 65 and older; currently New Mexico is thirty-ninth. New Mexico’s Aging and Long-Term Services Department (ALTSD) prepared this four-year state plan on aging to comply with the Older Americans Act. New Mexico faces challenges not found in other states, with its relatively large geography and sparse population. In addition, New Mexico has a high concentration of Hispanic/Latino older adults, almost one in three, as well as a large Native American Indian population. These realities require customized planning for tomorrow’s age shift.
New Mexico’s ALTSD has created six Planning Service Areas (PSAs) and developed customized and specific plans for each region. Local Area Agencies on Aging support the six PSAs.
Conditions in New Mexico this plan addresses:
- New Mexico has a significant number of older adults living in poverty, which means there will be increasing demand for services designed for those with low incomes, such as employment services.
- The problems of hunger and food insecurity (not knowing where one’s next meal will come from) in New Mexico are major. In addition to experiencing increased demand for meals, the aging network in New Mexico is experiencing more requests for transportation, homemakers, respite care and other in-home services, as well as services that support economic security such as employment training and public benefits advocacy.
- New Mexico has implemented a state-run program called the Golden Opportunities for Lifelong Development (GOLD). It is a mentoring program for all ages, with a special section focusing on adults 50+.
- The state also recently launched “Engage New Mexico,” a program intended to involve older adults through meaningful and purposeful employment, volunteering and learning opportunities. The goal is to enable New Mexicans to work together to address social problems, promote health and sustain personal independence in a society where the public is fully engaged and people come together to solve problems and support each other.
How to Use
This plan produced by the New Mexico Aging and Long-Term Services Department delivers on the requirements of the Older Americans Act, but it goes beyond that by setting goals, strategies and tactics that cater to the unique characteristics of New Mexico. Local planners and government officials who must accommodate special sub-segments of their older adult populations can review this plan for ideas and approaches.
View full report: New Mexico State Plan on Aging – 2009-13 (PDF – 786 KB)