“Straight Talk on Medicare and Social Security” Town Hall airs throughout Oregon
‘You’ve Earned a Say’ takes Oregonians’ voices to Washington D.C.
Straight Talk on Medicare and Social Security will take the national conversation about the future of Medicare and Social Security to television stations throughout Oregon with a locally produced, one-hour town hall meeting on August 26. Sponsored by AARP Oregon, the program is a part of the national ‘You’ve Earned a Say’ initiative.
“Oregonians say they are frustrated Washington D.C. isn’t listening to them when it comes to the future of Medicare and Social Security,” said Jerry Cohen, AARP Oregon State Director. “So we’re taking the debate about Medicare and Social Security out from behind closed doors in D.C. and into the living rooms of Oregonians,” Cohen said. Medford television station KOBI-TV is producing the town hall.
Oregon experts will share information about these important programs – and also listen to studio audience members and provide the public with ways to make their voices heard. Program panelists discussing Medicare include Ashland resident and AARP National Board Member Dr. Allen Douma as well as the manager for the State Health Insurance Benefits Assistance Program; Salem resident Lisa Emerson, program manager of Oregon Senior Health Insurance Benefits Assistance (SHIBA) Program. (SHIBA is part of the Oregon Insurance Division within the Department of Consumer and Business Services); and, Salem resident Mary Jaeger, Long Term Care Ombudsman for Oregon. The segment on Social Security features retired School District Superintendent and Human Resource Manager Daniel Rodriguez of Clackamas, and AARP Oregon Outreach Director Joyce DeMonnin of Portland. KOBI-TV News director Julie Akins will moderate.
Television stations KEVU-TV in Eugene (9 pm), KTVZ-TV (9 pm) in Bend, KGW-TV (10 am) and KGW 24/7 in Portland (3 pm) will join KOBI (9 pm) in airing the town hall meeting on August 26th. It will be rebroadcast on September 2 on KLSR (1 pm), KFXO (5 pm) and KOBI (10 am). AARP Oregon will show the program on social media channels on You Tube www.youtube.com/user/AARPOregon and Facebook (www.facebook.com/AARPOregon.
Medicare and Social Security may require some combination of more funding or benefit changes to stay strong into the future, Cohen noted. AARP members have an overwhelming desire to be involved in the debate. “Medicare and Social Security provide the foundation of retirement security for over 525,000 Oregonians, and will be equally important to future generations,” concluded Cohen. “They have paid into these programs throughout their careers and deserve a voice in the discussion about how best to strengthen them.”
At www.earnedasay.org, viewers will find a one-stop resource and straight forward information about Social Security and Medicare, and the challenges they face. There are online interactive tools that highlight some of the policy options being discussed, and allow users to side with the arguments either for or against those policies. AARP has identified 15 proposals on Medicare and 12 on Social Security. “Straight Talk on Medicare and Social Security” Town Hall will provide a look at several of these options and will give viewers a deeper understand of how changes may affect their benefits.