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Westchester Seniors Urged To Take 'Economic Security' Survey

Findings will determine if their incomes meet their basic needs.

Westchester County residents age 60 and older who have not yet taken the county survey to learn if their incomes cover their basic needs without public or private subsidies are encouraged to do so at this time.

 “We need the data from this survey to have a better picture of where we can put our limited dollars to best impact seniors,” said Westchester County Executive Robert P. Astorino.  “Don’t delay taking part.”

The survey is sponsored by the Westchester Public/Private Partnership for Aging Services and the county’s Department of Senior Programs and Services (DSPS) in conjunction with its Livable Communities initiative.

The Elder Economic Security Standard Index – also known as the Elder Economic Security Survey – measures the economic security of older adults by determining whether or not they have sufficient income to pay for their basic needs: food, transportation, health care insurance and housing.

The anonymous survey is being distributed at DSPS coalition meetings, nutrition sites and Livable Communities Villages, among other locations. Seniors with Internet access can complete the survey at www.westchestergov.com/seniors. Seniors without access should contact Colette Phipps at (914) 813-6441 or cap2@westchestergov.com to receive the survey by mail.

Seniors have until the end of this year to take the survey and the results will be tallied and compiled by zip code in 2013 to create a portrait of the economic security of Westchester’s seniors. The county will share its findings with the public as well as with service providers, senior advocates and policymakers.

DSPS Commissioner Mae Carpenter said the survey findings will be a blueprint for its projects in future years. 

“I encourage every senior to make it a priority to take this survey,” Carpenter said. “We might not be able to shift the wind, but we may be able to tilt the sails. Of course, we first have to know which way the wind is blowing.”

The survey was developed by Wider Opportunities for Women (WOW) in collaboration with the Gerontology Institute of the University of Massachusetts, Boston.

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