California Latinos over the age of 50 are concerned about having access to affordable health care as they age, according to a new AARP survey. Yet, while 99% of respondents say adequate health coverage is critical to them, only 34% think they currently have the amount of coverage they need.
“These results confirm what we already suspected,” said AARP California State President David Pacheco. “Latinos, like all older Californians, agree on what they need to live their best lives, but a significant number of them feel those needs are not currently met.”
The telephone survey of 50+ Californians, which was conducted between January 2nd and January 31st, also found that the state of the economy is a top issue of concern. More specifically, 50+ Latinos are worried about potentially drastic cuts to state services. When asked what services should be protected from budget cuts, 93% said funding for K-12 education should be preserved.
Pacheco is not surprised: “50+ Californians of all backgrounds clearly care deeply about their communities and the future of their state – but they care even more about providing a prosperous future for their children and grandchildren. In fact, the idea that older people care only for their own, narrow interests was always a myth,” he said.
Other state services considered vital by large majorities of respondents included firefighters, police and parks (96%); funding for public colleges and universities (91%); home-care services that keep people out of nursing homes (86%); health care access for the uninsured (90%); and transportation, construction and road maintenance (81%).
When asked about potential sources of revenue for the state, large majorities favored increasing the tax on alcoholic beverages (75%), increasing the tax on cigarettes (69%), and raising income tax rates for households earning more than $250,000 annually (65%).
Other potential taxes proved less popular, including increasing licensing and user fees (57% opposed) and increasing the state sales tax rate (45% opposed).