Zorro Lunch Box or Retirement Account, How Are You Saving for Your Future?

Growing up, I could tell  when my Pop was coming home from work by hearing the jingling of change in his pockets. And, every night before he sat down for family dinner, Pop would go to the basement and empty the contents of his pockets into a Zorro lunch box for safekeeping. Mom and Pop were devoted savers — Pop in his lunch box and Mom in her Christmas Club account at the bank. One day Pop announced, “It’s time …

Does your state support services for older Americans, family caregivers?

Family caregivers provide an estimated $450 billion in unpaid care annually, helping their older parents, spouses and others to live independently at home—and out of costly institutional care, often paid for by Medicaid. But now, in a number of states as governors and legislatures negotiate their state’s annual budgets, critical assistance on which family caregivers and their loved ones rely on is at risk. Proposed cuts to home care, adult day services, meals-on-wheels and more have real consequences for families. …

‘Help Please’: One Man’s Plea Against Rising Utility Rates

“Help please.” That was Christopher’s message when he signed a petition urging the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities to take action and lower his utility rates. You see, it had been nearly a decade since utility company JCP&L’s rates had been reviewed and we thought it was time to challenge the electricity rates they had been charging their customers for years.  AARP fought hard for Christopher and all New Jerseyans to reduce JCP&L’s rates by almost $35 million so …

Friend, Caregiver, Fighter: One Woman’s Story

As National Women’s History Month comes to a close, I’d like to share the story of my friend Audrey — a woman whose compassion, perseverance, strength and resilience certainly merit an honorable mention in the Women’s Hall of Fame. I met Audrey more than 30 years ago, when she was preparing to leave her own home to move in to care for her father. Like millions of American women do every day, she balanced working full time with family caregiving. …

States Cut Red Tape to Give Nurse Practitioners More Authority

This month, Gov. Pete Ricketts and the Nebraska state legislature made a smart move to remove the barrier that had prevented nurse practitioners from providing complete primary care for their patients. By cutting through the red tape, these elected officials have made more primary care clinicians available for Nebraskans in a variety of settings such as at home and in the community, medical offices, businesses like Walgreens, Target and CVS, and some workplaces. Nineteen other states have similar laws in …

How Is Your State Treating Its Firefighters, Nurses and Teachers?

My pop, a city bus driver, taught me to work hard and also have fun doing it. For more than 25 years, he announced each stop on his route as if he was leading a tour, not driving a Buffalo city bus. Pop retired at the mandatory age of 70. Mom and Pop lived on their Social Security, and Pop’s modest pension income was almost entirely dedicated to pay their health insurance premium. They enjoyed their retirement years, but I …