Seniors hit due to hurricanes, high energy prices, says NASCON
ATLANTA, GA (SEND2PRESS NEWSWIRE) — The hurricanes that struck several Southern states, coupled with higher gasoline and natural gas prices as winter arrives, are “giving a double punch to seniors, one of the country’s most vulnerable groups,” says National Association for Senior Concerns founder and Chairman Jerry L. Barton.
NASCON, launched this year in Barton’s words as “the center-right alternative to the American Association for Retired Persons,” says a significant response is to convene a national “Seniors’ Summit” in cooperation with other seniors groups, the Bush administration and the private sector to “launch a public debate on senior concerns and forge constructive strategies to ease hardships on the nation’s seniors.”
Barton calls for the private sector and senior organizations to recommend establishment of a country-wide crisis program that would outline how to better respond to evacuations, medical treatment and other urgent needs of the country’s senior population in times of emergencies. This could be one of the priorities of the summit agenda, he said.
“The needs of our senior population are difficult enough to meet in normal times and during the past hurricane season it was shown that we must come up with a crisis plan to respond better than what I’ve seen so far,” he added.
A “Senior Summit” could issue recommendations to assist the elderly hit by high energy prices and to ask Congress to defer big-ticket budget items in order to help shift money to senior-related concerns. Barton cited tackling Medicare reform- specifically, “reforming a system that is being systematically defrauded on a huge scale.”
Barton challenges the AARP and other seniors groups to join in promoting a summit with leaders of the private sector and the Bush administration. Those interested can contact him through the NASCON web site www.nascon.org.