$58 million investment in plan will add additional centers and services in underserved communities to help older New Yorkers age in place
Mayor Bill de Blasio today announced the City will invest $58 million in the first year of his five-year Community Care Plan for older New Yorkers. The plan addresses the importance of creating a network of services that support the independence, self-reliance and wellbeing older New Yorkers need to age in their homes.
“As they age, our seniors deserve to remain in their homes and the neighborhoods they know and love,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “The Community Care Plan not only offers services, but also a sense of security.”
“As our City recovers, we’re focused on keeping seniors front and center in all that we do, including continuing to provide vital resources and expanding services, from vaccine sites and outreach strategies to these new, crucial investments in community care,” said Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services Melanie Hartzog. “We thank DFTA for their continued leadership and remain committed to uplifting older New Yorkers, which will help ensure New York comes back stronger and more inclusive than ever.”
“New York City is again modeling what is needed to be an age-inclusive City, where older adults can age in place with the support of their community, paving the way for what an aging-in-place city should be in this country,” said Department for the Aging Commissioner Lorraine Cortés-Vázquez. “The pandemic highlighted the detrimental effects that living in institutions had on both older adults and their families. This investment in Community Care will provide the continuum of services, safety net and community network that older New Yorkers need to continue living in their homes, communities and among their loved ones.”
"This $48 million of funding for the Community Care Plan is a much-needed investment for our older adult population, which is the fastest-growing age demographic in New York City. Aging in place is more than physical permanence; it allows older New Yorkers to remain rooted in the communities they helped to shape throughout their lifetime. I am pleased that the Administration and the Council agreed that the RFP for Older Adult Centers was simply too important to rush. Since the beginning of the pandemic, we have lost so many seniors to COVID-19. I am hopeful that with this new timeline we will see a seamless continuation of services for our seniors who have endured isolation, illness, and trauma this past year," said Council Member Margaret Chin. "Additionally, I cannot emphasize enough the importance of fulfilling the commitment to add the additional $10 million to the model budget. I thank Commissioner Lorraine Cortes-Vazquez, Deputy Mayor Melanie Hartzog, and Mayor de Blasio for including this funding in the Community Care Plan."
With this five-year Community Care Plan, the New York City Department for the Aging (DFTA) will add 25 additional Older Adults Centers (OACs) or Naturally Occurring Retirement Communities (NORCs) in communities with large aging populations that are currently underserved. In addition, investment in the Community Care Plan will provide additional program staff, transportation services, and robust outreach to expand services to older New Yorkers.
The plan will also increase existing services that allow older adults to remain in their homes with dignity and support and avoid institutionalization. It also builds upon the success and lessons learned during the COVID-19 pandemic, such as the expansion of virtual services that has kept many older adults active and engaged while mitigating social isolation.
This investment lays the groundwork for future investments needed to provide Community Care across the five boroughs. One of the first steps of the Community Care plan is the release of a Request for Proposals (RFP) for OACs and NORCs. It will seek proposals that foster collaboration across community-based programs that are aligned with the Community Care five-year plan, ensure congregate and home-based services for older adults throughout the City, and expand services in currently underserved neighborhoods.