Wednesday, November 20, 2013
The South Carolina Silver Haired Legislature will present three priorities to the Second Session of the 120th General Assembly of South Carolina.
“We are a nonpolitical group, we endorse nobody and we’re definitely not a lobbyist group,” said SCSHL representative Harold Core of Dorchester County. “We are looking to move the legislature to pass laws for senior citizens that help the senior citizens.”
The first priority is funding for in-home and community-based services. The SCSHL want funds as requested by the Lieutenant Governor’s Office due to the rapidly growing “older citizen” population in South Carolina, older adults preferring to age in place, and the services cost less than institutional care reducing costs to older adults, their families and taxpayers.
Second is assuring transportation is and will be available to seniors at an affordable fee, particularly in the rural areas of the state. They also pointed out the growing senior population as a driving force.
The third priority is for the state to create a statewide volunteer program to provide a court-appointed guardian ad litem for each vulnerable adult in abuse, neglect, and exploitation proceedings within the Family Court.
Core said the process goes through a lot of committees and takes up to 2-3 years for the legislature to be passed. The SCSHL representatives bring the priorities to the South Carolina representatives and senators. Often times the legislature will change regularly until they are passed.
“One time we submitted 3-4 paragraphs about having criminal background checks on nursing home employees and when we got it back it became four pages,” he said. “Once it goes through all the committees it looks nothing like what we turned into them to start with, but in the end the results are the same.”