May is a special month for seniors

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, May 27, 2003

Older Americans Month originated with a presidential proclamation in May 1963 and it has been proclaimed every year since then.

Hassie Green, director of the Lillian Green Nutrition Center in Troy, said May is a special month for seniors because it is a time when issues that affect their lives take center stage.

In quoting President George W. Bush, Green said that seniors have cared for their families and communities, enhanced our economic prosperity, defended our nation and preserved and protected the Founder's visions.

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"Like President Bush said, the commitment of our senior citizens to our future sets an inspiring example for all of us," Green said.

Green said May is Older Americans Month but the issues that seniors face are year around.

"Fraud against the elderly is a serious problem affecting thousands of Americans every year," Green said. "Many scam artists prey on and target seniors as their victims."

Green said family members and friends could do much to help protect America's older generation from scams.

"Visit the homes of elderly relatives and friends on a regular basis," she said. "Watch for frequent calls from telemarketers and be alert to questionable purchases or unneeded services."

Green said it is also a good idea to remind seniors to request written information from any unsolicited caller offering a product, service, prize or sweepstakes winning and then end the call.

"Persistent calls from the same individual are against the law and need to be reported to the state Attorney General's office," Green said.

The mailbox can also be an indicator that the resident is a player of promotional games and has been placed on a "sucker" list.

"A full mailbox could indicate a large number or daily mailings from promotion companies," Green said. "It is also a good idea to be alert for packages or boxes containing 'junk' gifts or personalized items like pens or letter openers. These could be signs of involvement in a sweepstakes or prize scam."

Green said the Lillian Green Nutrition Center is a place where seniors can come to discuss issues facing them and to have the fun and fellowship that comes from being with others of similar age and with similar interests.

"If you are a Pike County resident and 60 years of age or older, please join us at the Lillian Green Nutrition Center," Green said.

The center is located on East Elm Street in Troy. To discuss the activities and events offered at the nutrition center, Green invites potential participants to visit the center and ask for her or Myrtle Renfroe or call 566-0201 for more information.