AARP is proud to represent and serve 207,659 AARP members age 50+ in the state.
For 50 years, AARP has had one mission: making life better for older Americans. AARP was created after its founder discovered a retired teacher in poor health living in a chicken coop, unable to afford medical care and with barely enough money to live on. Since then, AARP has been fighting for health and financial security for all Americans.
In 2010, AARP Nebraska will be working with legislators from both parties to protect lifeline programs that provide seniors with food, health care and other necessities from deep budget cuts. We will also be working to strengthen state laws to prevent banks and credit card companies from taking advantage of older Americans and to protect consumers from unfair utility hikes.
Age 50+ voters: 76 percent of Nebraskans age 50+ voted in the 2008 election, sending a clear message that it’s time for elected officials from both sides of the aisle to come together to solve our nation’s problems.
AARP: Working To Improve the Lives of All Nebraskans
Strengthening Social Security: We are fighting to strengthen Social Security for current and future generations by:
- Providing relief for 277,212 Nebraskans who won’t receive a cost of living increase (COLA) this year.
Protecting Medicare: We are fighting to protect guaranteed benefits for the 270,435 Nebraskans who receive their health care through Medicare.
Improving Health Care: We are fighting to stop insurance abuses and protect the Medicare benefits seniors have earned by:
- Lowering drug costs for 131,037 seniors by closing the Medicare Part D coverage gap or “doughnut hole.”
- Preventing insurance companies from denying affordable coverage to up to 30,000 Nebraskans age 50-64 based on age or pre-existing condition.
- Expanding access to home and community-based services through Medicaid – the largest payer of long-term services and supports – which, in 2007, spent only 18 percent of long-term care dollars in on home and community based-services for older adults and adults with physical disabilities and 82 percent on institutional care for the same population.
Supporting Caregivers: AARP is fighting to ensure more Americans can receive the services they need to live independently in their homes and communities by:
- Valuing and supporting the 270,000 family caregivers in – individuals who provide help to their loved ones to enable them to live at home and whose unpaid contributions are valued at $2,000,000,000.
Promoting Retirement Savings: We are fighting to help Americans save for retirement by:
- Enacting Automatic IRA legislation, which would help many of the estimated 464,500 Nebraskans who don’t currently have a retirement plan at work to have simple access to a retirement savings account.
AARP: Fighting for Nebraska
AARP Nebraska’s advocacy network provides members and other individuals interested in AARP advocacy priorities with information they can use to become effective advocates. Nebraska has over 32,000 grassroots activists, a third of who are e-activists. We have a core advocacy volunteer group of 138 persons. Our State Volunteer Advocacy Coordinator partners with our Associate State Director for Advocacy and they lead monthly meetings with advocacy volunteers in Omaha and Lincoln.
We distribute a biweekly newsletter to core advocacy volunteers. There are nine volunteer lobbyists who meet frequently during the state legislative session. We currently have volunteers assigned to 80% of the state legislative districts. AARP Nebraska has appointed seven Congressional District Lead volunteers. We are now working to increase their responsibility to coordinate a member liaison network with members of Congress.
On the state level, AARP Nebraska’s 2010 priorities are as follows:
- Continue our efforts to rebalance public long-term care funding to enhance the availability of home and community-based services;
- Define assisted living through legislation and require disclosure by facilities to prospective residents regarding services, costs, staffing levels, and conditions under which the prospective resident would be asked to leave;
- Increase investor protection through a Free Lunch Monitoring Program;
- Provide leadership for the Nebraska Public Transportation Coalition’s initiative to build six regional teams to craft and implement plans for reliable, accessible and affordable transportation for Nebraskans; and,
- Continue to fight to preserve critical services such as Medicaid for our members.
AARP Contact Information
Strengthening Social Security: Social Security Administration, 2007. OASDI Beneficiaries by State and County. Protecting Medicare: The Kaiser Family Foundation, 2008. State Health Facts. http://www.statehealthfacts.org/
Improving Health Care: Doughnut hole: AARP (PPI) Fact Sheet, 2009. “Closing the ‘Doughnut Hole’ Will Help Protect Over One-Third of Medicare Beneficiaries from High Drug Costs”
Improving Health Care: Uninsured 50-64: Census Bureau. Current Population Survey, Annual Social and Economic Supplement, 2007 through 2009
Improving Health Care: Home and Community-Based Services: AARP PPI, 2009. Across the States: Profiles of Long-term Care and Independent Living.
Supporting Caregivers: AARP PPI, 2008. Valuing the Invaluable: The Economic Value of Caregiving, 2008 Update.
Promoting Retirement Savings: Based on data from the US Census, State and Patterns & Current Populations Survey statistics on Pension Coverage. 2004.