Sen. King first to co-sponsor LIFEtime Act to support seniors and caregivers

Sen. King first to co-sponsor LIFEtime Act to support seniors and caregivers

Maine Senator Angus King has become the first co-sponsor of the Living Independently for Extended Time (LIFEtime) Act.

The Act, introduced last month by Senator Mazie Hirono of Hawaii, is designed to establish a fund to support states that are looking to create a new approach to caregiving. The bill will help states start planning for the future and promote new innovative models that could potentially scale to the national level.

(For a more in-depth description of the bill, see this recent Beacon podcast.)

Measures to support caregiving are especially important to Maine, which has the oldest population of any state in the country.

The sponsorship by King was lauded by Caring Across Generations, a national group that worked with Senator Hirono to write and introduce the legislation.

“This issue already affects hundreds of thousands of Mainers, and will only become more important as the Elder Boom continues. And yet almost all our major laws and systems for care are based on standards and demographics from another era,” said Kevin Simowitz, political director for Caring Across Generations in an email. “It’s time we innovate to solve one of the major issues of our time: how we care for our families, particularly our aging loved ones.”

The group is asking Mainers to sign a petition thanking King for his support of the bill.

Maine lawmakers have already been experimenting with supports that help people live and age independently, including the recently-passed Keep ME Home initiative, spearheaded by House Speaker Mark Eves. Federal funding through the LIFEtime Act could assist in scaling up those efforts.

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