May 29, 2012

Manchin Urges Support for Older Americans Act at Beckley Senior Center

About 50,000 West Virginia seniors rely on services offered through the Older Americans Act, which is slated to be reauthorized this summer

Manchin is offering two commonsense amendments to the bill: the Seniors’ Financial Bill of Rights and the Streamlining Services for Older Veterans Act

Washington, D.C. — U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) visited the Raleigh County Senior Center today to urge West Virginians to support the Older Americans Act, a law that funds programs like Meals on Wheels, adult day services, caregiver help, legal assistance, transportation and abuse prevention for the elderly. 

Senator Manchin is a member of the Senate Special Committee on Aging, and he held a field hearing in February in Charleston on the Older Americans Act to gather feedback and input from people in West Virginia. Based on what he heard from his constituents, Senator Manchin has introduced two amendments to the Older Americans Act: the Seniors’ Financial Bill of Rights Act and the Streamlining Services for Older Veterans Act. 

“Now more than ever, we need work together to help seniors stay healthy and independent as they age,” Senator Manchin said. “As Governor, I was so proud that we prioritized our seniors and increased our resources for senior services in West Virginia by 83 percent. We put food trucks in all 55 counties, targeted funding for Alzheimer’s Respite Care and Elder Watch programs, and provided seniors with the support they needed to continue to live in the comfort of their own homes. And we did all that even as we cut our tax rates. As we work together across party lines to run our government more efficiently, serving our seniors will remain a high priority.” 

Senator Manchin’s amendments would help protect seniors from financial exploitation and would require state and local agencies to develop a plan for delivering senior services to veterans. 

Information on the Senator’s amendments and the Older Americans Act is attached. 


  • Last year, the first of the 77 million Baby Boomers turned 65. 

  • Each day, for the next 18 years, more than 10,000 seniors will turn 65 and become eligible for senior services and entitlements. 

  • The Older Americans Act was signed into law in 1965 and funds the majority of programs that support our seniors. 

  • Every five years, Congress takes a fresh look at the programs in the Older Americans Act to assess whether they are meeting the needs of the people they serve. 

  • Congress is due to reauthorize the Older Americans Act this year, as it will expire on September 30, 2012.