As Congressional leaders continue negotiations on the federal budget, Indiana’s elderly residents say they don’t think their opinions are being considered. That’s according to a recent American Association of Retired Persons poll of Medicare and Social Security recipients.
AARP started an initiative about a year ago to get ordinary citizens more involved in the national conversation about whether Congress should cut funding to Medicare and Social Security.
When asked about the initiative, just more than half of Indiana residents polled said they thought it was a good idea, but didn’t think their opinions would make a difference to Congress.
Marilyn Robertson, 83, lives in Ellettsville and has been on Medicare for 18 years. She says she has already seen significant cuts to the program.
Robertson says Medicare used to send an in-home aid to check the vitals of one of her neighbors.
“They did away with this lady who comes every two to three weeks,” says Robertson. “I do it now because I can. I can check her blood pressure, and heart rate, and her temperature.”
AARP President Rob Romasco says the uncertainty surrounding the future of Medicare and Social Security is exactly why the company started the You’ve Earned A Say initiative.
“These programs are vital, they’re lifelines, and we think that people who’ve paid into them their whole lives and expect them to be there for them ought to have a say in how these programs are dealt with,” says Romasco.
Indiana has just over a million Medicare beneficiaries, slightly less than Illinois and Ohio.