Aging on the Streets: America’s Growing Older Homeless Population
- An expansion of safety net programs such as Social Security to account for the rise in the cost of living since the programs were created in order to protect seniors who rely on these benefits from falling in to poverty.
- Increased funding for outreach initiatives designed to ensure that populations at risk of homelessness have access to safety net programs.
- An expansion of health care programs like Medicaid and Medicare to include geriatric-specific health needs in order to reduce out-of-pocket medical costs for elders, which, particularly when unexpected medical issues arise, can push those at risk of homelessness over the edge.
- Greater funding for health care providers and community health centers that specifically offer preventive care to homeless elders.
- An increase in the number of affordable housing units available to aging homeless people, as well as housing that is designed to accommodate the specific needs of older occupants.
- Greater focus on creating supportive housing that combines affordable housing with counseling services to address the complex needs of those who are chronically homeless.
- Improved access to low-cost legal services for seniors at risk of losing their housing.