Silver Haired Legislature & Congress

While I was poking around the Kokua Council site, the “Silver Legislature” piqued my interest.

Google “Silver Haired Legislature”. Am I ever envious. This is a decades long program for area agencies on aging (see Older Americans Act. I’ll find the references I submitted earlier and place them here.) to gather representatives from around the state to identify and promote legislative priorities for older citizens.

see also http://www.shls.org/index.html

and there is a national version

The Silver Haired Congress, established by the U.S. Congress in 1994, is a national nonprofit and nonpartisan group of registered voters, 60 years of age or older, who are dedicated to resolving current issues concerning the aging population and future generations in their area….

from the Library of Congress

Senate Report 104-345 – RECOGNIZING AND ENCOURAGING THE CONVENING OF A NATIONAL SILVER HAIRED CONGRESS

The resolution, Senate Concurrent Resolution 52, recognizes and encourages the convening of a National Silver Haired Congress in the District of Columbia. A National Silver Haired Congress would be modeled after the U.S. Congress. It would take up legislation on issues affecting seniors, such as consumer protection, crime prevention, health care, housing, and long-term care. The bills it passes would be presented to national legislators.

The National Silver Haired Congress organization is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, educational institution. The yearly event will have no cost to the Federal Government….

PURPOSE AND SUMMARY

Many States have encouraged and facilitated the convening of senior citizen legislative and advocacy bodies. These bodies have provided older Americans with the opportunity to express their concerns by making recommendations to State governments.

A National Silver Haired Congress, with representatives from each State, would provide a national forum for issues concerning seniors. The nonpartisan body would propose grassroots solutions to the concerns of seniors. Since the population of older Americans is growing faster than any other age group, it is more important than ever to encourage their input in the political process.

Alaska doesn’t have area aging agencies or councils. Alaska doesn’t require senior advisory boards anymore for their NTS or ADC grantees. Try to find Alaska’s silver haired congressperson (Cong. Don “Kiss my earlobe” Young and Uncle Ted don’t count for this purpose.)

Neither local newspaper will investigate anything about elders. As one editor said–“they look happy whenever I’m up there.” And our locals are not yet fed up enough with this treatment to get off their rockers (but to be fair, when our elders do stand up for themselves, the city and/or senior center collects secret dossiers and tries to take them to court.)


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