Albany, N.Y. — Today, New York State Senator Kevin Parker’s legislation which will expand mental health services for senior citizens to include support for substance use disorder and compulsive gambling has been signed into law by Governor Cuomo. The new law, Senate Bill S4925A, will ensure that geriatric services are not limited. This law broadens current programming by adding older adults with substance use disorders and renames the program to the “geriatrics service demonstration program for mental health and substance use disorders.”
It is estimated that a large amount of seniors suffer from alcoholism or some other form of chemical dependence. Compulsive gambling is also a growing problem. As our senior population is expected to increase over the next 15 years, we must act proactively to develop programs and strategies to meet the expected needs of our seniors. This legislation is unlike previous attempts to provide services for seniors because it does not create a new bureaucracy to investigate best practices for senior chemical dependence and compulsive gambling services. It simply expands an existing planning council to address these issues among the elderly in New York State.
"Aging affects everyone differently,” stated Senator Parker. “We need to ensure that we offer a broad range of services for seniors so they can live a long healthy life. I am thankful to my colleagues and Governor Cuomo for making seniors mental health a priority,” Senator Parker concluded.
About Senator Kevin Parker:
Senator Kevin Parker represents Brooklyn’s ethnically diverse 21st Senate District comprised of sections of Flatbush, East Flatbush, Midwood, Ditmas Park, Kensington, Windsor Terrace, and Park Slope. A lifelong Brooklyn resident, Senator Parker has the honor of serving his community as the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Energy and Telecommunications, and on the Senate Standing Committees on Finance; Rules; Alcoholism & Substance Abuse; Insurance; and Banks.
For more information on Senator Parker, please visit www.nysenate.gov/senators/kevin-s-parker