Supervisor Joan Hartmann recently met with residents at Atterdag Village, where she shared her plan to address the “Silver Tsunami” affecting Santa Barbara County. I serve on the Atterdag Village Board and am grateful for Supervisor Hartmann’s knowledge of and commitment to addressing the needs of this growing population. Indeed, the senior population in California will double in 10 years!
As chair of the Adult & Aging Network, Supervisor Hartmann conducted a study on the increasing need to provide transportation for seniors for medical appointments, shopping, and enabling seniors to participate in social and entertainment opportunities — leading to a Community Partners in Caring Program. As she has pointed out, Solvang’s median age is 32 percent higher than the state average — and our community needs to prepare for and serve that reality.
A natural collaborator, Supervisor Hartmann networks with local forums to bring to Santa Barbara County experts to address planning for retirement and the importance of nutrition, fitness, and social opportunities for seniors. I have spoken with seniors who wish to stay in their homes or are unable to afford senior retirement communities. Supervisor Hartmann knows that meeting the physical, emotional, and financial needs of seniors requires routine monitoring of health issues and oversight of caregivers to protect our seniors from elder abuse and financial scams. She has also worked on issues such as long term leases for senior centers, to allow improvements, and on outreach and cooling centers for seniors affected by power shutoffs as well.
Supervisor Hartmann has my vote!