LANSING, MI (STL.News) Governor Gretchen Whitmer, in partnership with the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS), is celebrating the state’s more than 2.4 million adults aged 60 years and older by proclaiming Aug. 21 as Older Michigander Day.
Michigan residents are living longer, healthier lives – and Michigan currently has more residents over age 60 than under the age of 18.
“Our state is committed to supporting older adults by ensuring there are opportunities available in local communities to help them stay engaged, maintain their health and independence and live where they want to live and thrive with age,” said Governor Whitmer. “We encourage Michiganders to take time this month to acknowledge the older adults in their lives and join me in thanking them for the contributions they have made to our state.”
Older adults are stronger socially and economically when there is community support and recognition to provide them with resources for fulfilling life. Michigan was the first state in the Midwest and fifth in the nation to join the AARP/World Health Organization Age-Friendly Movement. Enrolled communities and states share the belief that communities are more livable and better able to support people of all ages when local leaders commit to improving the quality of life for the very young, the very old and everyone in between.
“People of all age, as well as businesses, benefit from the adoption of policies and programs that make neighborhoods walkable, feature transportation options, enable access to key services, provide opportunities to participate in community activities, and support housing that’s affordable and adaptable,” said Paula D. Cunningham, State Director of AARP Michigan. “That’s why AARP is proud to count Michigan among the states that have joined the age-friendly movement.”
“Michigan has one of the most rapidly aging populations in the country, and our vision is for Michiganders to live well and thrive as they age,” said Elizabeth Hertel, MDHHS director. “MDHHS has worked diligently to meet the diverse needs of the growing number of older adults in our state through the Aging and Adult Services Agency and local service providers that offer essential community-based supports and services.”
To locate services that help older Michiganders maintain their independence at home or in their community, contact local Area Agency on Aging offices. For more information on aging resources, visit the MDHHS Aging and Adult Services Agency.