AARP Executive Vice President and Chief Advocacy & Engagement Officer Nancy LeaMond issued the following statement on the House bipartisan vote on the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, which will head next to President Biden for his signature:
“AARP applauds the House passage of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, which will make crucial improvements to our nation’s infrastructure and includes specific measures that will benefit the lives of older adults and help keep them connected.
“Internet accessibility is essential for older adults to stay connected with their families, communities, commerce, and services. With today’s vote, historic investments will be made in expanding the reach of broadband infrastructure to those who lack it, as well as in making access to high-speed internet more affordable. The legislation extends the broadband subsidy program which now benefits more than 7 million people– of which 40% are over 50. It also invests in training to ensure that individuals who face barriers due to language, ability, or income get the help they need to make full use of technology.
“The bill also includes critical measures to modernize and expand public transit, which is key for providing choice and mobility for Americans 50+ and people with disabilities. Older adults want to continue to live in their communities as they age, yet they too frequently lack convenient, safe and accessible transportation options when they no longer are able to drive or choose not to drive.
“Programs like Complete Streets and Safe Streets for All increase the safety of roadways for all users, and can reduce the incidence of pedestrian fatalities among people of all ages, including older adults. Transportation options – such as those envisioned in the bill – are essential to keep older adults connected to jobs and health care, and remain engaged in their communities.”