Senate Passes Bill To Protect Senior Assistance Programs

Martin J. Golden

July 08, 2008


City Council Fails To Protect Seniors, Senate Democrats Play Politics

While Senate Acts To Address Senior Issues

The New York State Senate today passed legislation, sponsored by Senator Serphin Maltese (Queens) (S.8457) that would protect service programs that help senior citizens in New York City and throughout the State and ensure proper community input on any planned changes to the services, such as meals-on-wheels, that millions of seniors depend on.

The bill comes in response to proposed changes to senior citizens service programs in New York City that have raised concerns about the possibility that seniors who depend on the meals-on-wheels program would receive frozen, rather than hot meals.

The bill would require that any changes in senior assistance and service programs include community input; impact studies to determine the number of seniors affected; the long term projections for the number of seniors to be served by these programs; and whether there would be any reduction in services as a result of the proposed changes.

"This bill works to protect the best interests of seniors by calling for a proper review by the State Office of the Aging and input from seniors," said Senator Martin Golden (R-C, Brooklyn), the Chairman of the Senate Aging Committee. "No senior who wants a hot meal should get a cold meal. We haven’t seen any upgrade in many of these programs since the 1970’s. This is commonsense legislation for seniors, for senior centers, for the City of New York and for all the seniors throughout the State and I commend Senator Maltese for getting it done, now we need the Assembly to act."