- Right to affordable health insurance. Mike Ross will protect Medicaid, especially the state’s bipartisan Medicaid private option. As of June 30, 2014, 35 percent of those enrolled in the private option are older than 45 and more than 1 in 7 are older than 55.
- Right to be heard. Mike Ross will designate a “Chief Seniors Advocate” in the governor’s office who will serve as the key advisor on senior issues and who will be the chief and direct liaison between the governor’s office and state agencies and organizations that deal with aging issues.
- Right to equal opportunities in the workplace. Mike Ross will encourage the hiring of older Arkansans and help employers eliminate age discrimination in the workplace. Nearly 66% of Arkansans say based on what they have seen or experienced that people 50 and older face age discrimination in the workplace. And, nearly 1 in 4 Arkansans reported they or someone they know has been the victim of age discrimination.
- Right to food security. Mike Ross will work with state and federal agencies, legislators and nonprofit organizations to tackle senior hunger in Arkansas head on. Arkansas has the highest percentage of seniors who are at risk of hunger in the United States, and levels of food insecurity among Arkansans over 60 have increased since 2013. Currently, about 40 percent of Arkansans aged 60 or older are living with food insecurity.
- Right to accessibility. Mike Ross will create an “easy access” online portal for seniors and adults with disabilities and the caregivers that support them. This will be an easily accessible “one stop online shop” for all senior-related issues and services in the state of Arkansas.
- Right to be free from exploitation. Mike Ross will work with the Attorney General to support and find ways to strengthen Arkansas’s ongoing efforts to educate and protect seniors against schemes, identify theft and fraudulent scams that target them.
- Right to quality long-term services and independent choices. Mike Ross will work to improve Arkansas’s long-term care services for seniors in Arkansas and better empower them to make their own retirement and long-term care decisions. According to a recent study by the AARP, Arkansas ranks 40th overall in the nation for long-term services and support for older people, adults with disabilities and family caregivers.
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