Apr 30, 2020
AARP Survey Finds 9 in 10 Older Americans Support Further Congressional Action to Address Coronavirus Crisis in Care Facilities
Americans 50-Plus Also Support Extended Unemployment Benefits, Tax Credits for Caregivers

WASHINGTONA new poll from AARP finds that nine in 10 Americans age 50 and older would strongly support or support additional federal action to assist nursing homes and other care facilities. The survey found that substantial majorities of older adults are in favor of legislation that Congress is considering: ensuring that health care workers get the personal protective equipment they need (99%); requiring that nursing homes and care facilities to disclose the number of active coronavirus cases they have (96%); and requiring facilities to make video visitation available for residents and family members (96%).

“These findings reveal a remarkable consensus among older Americans that the challenges of the coronavirus pandemic are vast and demand an equally ambitious response, particularly in nursing homes and care facilities,” said Bill Sweeney, AARP Senior Vice President for Government Affairs. “As congressional leaders consider their next steps, they would be wise to listen to older adults and take into account their unique perspective on the magnitude of this crisis.”

AARP is conducting a Virtual Lobby Week April 29-May 5, meeting remotely with senators and members of the House of Representatives to call for action on nursing homes, food assistance and funding for state and local governments. AARP’s poll found strong support among adults 50-plus for legislation that would address these concerns, including: 

  • Extending unemployment benefits for the duration of the crisis (96%).
  • Providing a federal income tax credit to family caregivers who incur expenses for the care and support of a family member (92%).
  • Temporarily increasing federal funding for food assistance to low income families (90%).

The survey is the second in a series of six tracking polls AARP will release on the views and experiences of Americans 50-plus during the coronavirus pandemic. It was conducted by NORC at the University of Chicago on behalf of AARP from April 20-21, 2020, among 2,796 adults age 50-plus. The margin of error is 2.95%.

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About AARP
AARP is the nation's largest nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to empowering people 50 and older to choose how they live as they age. With a nationwide presence and nearly 38 million members, AARP strengthens communities and advocates for what matters most to families: health security, financial stability and personal fulfillment. AARP also produces the nation's largest circulation publications: AARP The Magazine and AARP Bulletin. To learn more, visit www.aarp.org or follow @AARP and @AARPadvocates on social media.

Media Contact: Amanda Davis, 202- 434-2560, adavis@aarp.org, @aarpmedia