Skip Navigation
Link to HHS Website Department of Health & Human Services
Link to Administration on Aging HomePage
  Home > Press Room > For the Press > Press Releases
About AoA
Press Room
Elders & Families
Emergency Preparedness
Aging Statistics
AoA Programs
Program Results
Grant Opportunities
AoA Funded Resource Centers

This is an archive page. The links are no longer being updated.


Thursday, October 9, 2003 Contact: AoA Press Office
(202) 401-4541

The U.S. Administration On Aging Awards $3.6 Million To Support Consumer Protection And Assistance Projects For Older Americans

The Administration on Aging (AoA), part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), awarded grants totaling over $3.6 million to support consumer protection and assistance projects. Protecting the rights of older people and preventing their exploitation, abuse, and neglect is one of AoA’s most important goals. These new demonstrations and continuing projects will assist older Americans in the key areas of elder abuse prevention, women and retirement information, pension information and counseling, and legal assistance.

“It is clear that we need to do more to protect vulnerable seniors today and into the future.” said Assistant Secretary Carbonell. “AoA is committed to preventing all forms of abuse and to ensuring the rights of older Americans.”

National Center on Elder Abuse

AoA has awarded a cooperative agreement in the amount of $815,250 for a National Center on Elder Abuse. The National Association of State Units on Aging, in partnership with the American Bar Association Commission on Law and Aging, the National Association of Adult Protective Services Administrators, the National Committee for the Prevention of Elder Abuse, and the University of Delaware, will carry out the work of NCEA. The project will provide the public and professionals with information, training and technical assistance concerning elder abuse trends, policy and legislative developments, research that impacts on prevention, promising practices, and key issues for the field. The Center will also collect and disseminate elder abuse information relevant to rural and minority seniors and faith-based communities.

Women and Retirement Resource Center

AoA awarded a cooperative agreement in the amount of $248,376 to the Women’s Institute for a Secure Retirement (WISER) to establish a National Resource Center on Women and Retirement. The Center will provide up-to-date information to women and their families, especially low-income women of color and women with limited English proficiency to build and strengthen their capacity to plan for their economic security in later life. WISER will operate the Center as a national clearinghouse for tools and information on retirement planning and related financial matters. The Center will also provide technical assistance and consultation to state and area agencies on aging and other public and nonprofit private agencies to help implement related programs.

Pension Information and Counseling

The new pension information and counseling demonstrations will assist older Americans in accessing information about their retirement benefits and negotiating with former employers for due compensation, where appropriate. The AoA pension information and counseling projects are designed to reach out, educate, and promote pension awareness and protection among older adults.

AoA first funded pension information and counseling projects in 1992. The success of the original projects resulted in Congress incorporating the program permanently into the Older Americans Act. The program now includes two new regional projects, three on-going projects, and a national training and technical assistance project.

New pension projects include:

Legal Services for the Elderly New York, NY $149,974
Older Women's League, Gateway Chapter St. Louis, MO $149,614
Pension Rights Center Washington, DC $400,000

The following programs also received awards to continue their pension projects:

Elder Law of Michigan, Inc. Lansing, MI $150,000
Minnesota Senior Federation St. Paul, MN $150,000
University of Massachusetts-Boston Boston, MA $150,000

Senior Legal Services

Funding for the new senior legal services demonstrations will strengthen and improve the delivery of critical legal services to hard-to-reach, frail, socially and economically disadvantaged, and otherwise at-risk individuals. Legal staff and specially trained volunteers provide advice on legal questions or problems, distribute self-help materials, and refer older individuals to legal aid offices, pro-bono, or reduced-fee private attorneys who specialize in elder rights protection.

New senior legal services projects include:

Legal Services of Northern California Sacramento, CA $135,000
New Hampshire Legal Assistance Manchester, NH $90,000
Northwest Justice Project Seattle, WA $100,000
SE Louisiana Legal Services Corporation Hammond, LA $95,000

The following programs received funding to continue their projects:

AARP Foundation Programs Washington, DC $100,000

Access to Justice Foundation Lexington, KY $100,000
Connecticut Legal Services, Inc. Middletown, CT $125,000
Elder Law of Michigan, Inc. Lansing, MI $149,711
Idaho Legal Aid Services, Inc. Boise, ID $110,000
Legal Aid Bureau, Inc. Baltimore, MD $125,000
Legal Counsel for the Elderly Washington, DC $110,000
Legal Services for the Elderly, Inc. Augusta, ME $110,000
South Carolina Centers for Equal Justice Greenville, SC $104,040

Note: All HHS press releases, fact sheets and other press materials are available at