Michigan should be a place where seniors stay to enjoy their retirement, and where you can enjoy your later years with dignity and financial security. As your senator, my goal is to make sure you can spend this time focusing on what matters most: Your family and friends.
Unfortunately, pension taxes and fee hikes from Lansing have made it more difficult for seniors to plan — and afford — their future, which is why I will continue to fight for the stability you deserve.
Looking ahead to 2020, I am committed to doing more to make sure that our seniors, veterans and all of Michigan’s working families are taken care of.
I hope you’ll contact my office if there is ever anything we can do for you. You can email me at SenAHollier@senate.michigan.gov, or call my office at (517) 373-7748 or toll-free at (855) DIST002 (347-8002).
Working to Create a Stronger Michigan,
Toll-free: (855) DIST002 or
Meals on Wheels
You are a vital part of our community. After a lifetime of hard work, many continue to give back to our communities, and serve as the backbone of our neighborhoods, while others need our help. Seniors like yourself live on fixed incomes and struggle to pay for nutritious food due to expensive prescription drug costs, rising utility rates, increased rent, and more.
Meals on Wheels can help.
This program helps senior citizens eat nutritious meals by providing five per week to homebound, older adults. They also offer liquid nutrition for those who are unable to eat solid food and who have a prescription from their physician.
To qualify for Meals on
Wheels, an adult must be:
• 60 years or older;
• Homebound (e.g. unable to leave home without assistance and unable to drive); Unable to cook for him/herself;
• Have no one willing to prepare meals on a regular basis; and,
• Able to feed him/herself .
Wayne County Meals on Wheels:
Westland, 30712 Michigan Ave,
Westland, MI 48186,
Food isn’t the only problem in the dead of winter — heating bills can be too. Many low-income families and seniors struggle just to keep their house warm, but fortunately, The Heat and Warmth (THAW) Fund can help during the cold months.
THAW has multiple utility assistance programs available, including affordable payment plans for customers of DTE Low-Income Self-Sufficiency Plan (LSP), SEMCO Monthly Assistance Program (MAP), Consumers Energy Consumers Affordable Resource for Energy (CARE), and UPPCO Self-sufficiency & Education Program (EASE). They also offer resources for utility payment assistance and/or state emergency relief.
See which you may qualify for at THAWFund.org/Programs or call (800) 866-THAW (8429).
In addition, here are some helpful phone numbers if you have questions about your heating bill:
Detroit Water & Sewerage Department
Michigan Gas Utilities
Now that winter has begun and the days are finally getting longer, it’s important to be knowledgeable about what you can to do keep yourself warm during the colder months.
Hypothermia is an issue that affects people of all ages, but older adults are much more susceptible because they lose body heat faster. A body temperature of 95°F or lower can cause many health problems, such as a heart attack, kidney issues, liver damage or worse.
Being outside in the cold, or even being in a very cold house, can lead to hypothermia. Try to stay away from cold places and pay attention to how cold it is where you are. You can take steps to lower your chances of getting hypothermia by knowing the signs.
Symptoms of hypothermia include:
• Uncontrollable shivering
• Memory loss
• Slurred speech
• Apparent exhaustion
Wayne County Meals on Wheels:
Westland, 30712 Michigan Ave,
Westland, MI 48186, (734) 727-7357
Michigan Department of Health and Human Service’s Aging & Adult Services Agency
Phone: (517) 241-4100
In 2013, the state legislature expanded the Michigan Medicaid program in accordance with federal laws. Known as the Healthy Michigan Program (or HMP), it currently provides monthly health care coverage to nearly 650,000 individuals statewide.
To be eligible for coverage under Healthy Michigan, folks must be:
• Between the ages of 19 and 62;
• Ineligible for, or receiving other Medicaid or Medicare benefits;
• Not pregnant at the time of application; and,
• Have an income at or below 133% of the Federal Poverty Line.
Beginning January 2020, to keep Healthy Michigan Plan coverage, some HMP beneficiaries will be required to take a moment to report 80 hours a month of work or other activities, beginning in February 2020, to keep their coverage. Some will be excused if they are unable to work due to health or other reasons.
One or more of the following can count as work or activities:
• Having a job or income
• Being a student
• Looking for a job
• Volunteering (this activity can only be used for three months each calendar year)
• Doing job training
• Participating in a tribal employment program
• Participating in rehab (substance abuse)
• Doing vocational training
• Doing an internship
Sign-up or register for a MI Bridges account if you don’t already have one. This is where you can manage your case and explore resources if you need help with things like getting transportation, daycare or finding a job.
Go to Michigan.gov/MIBridges to register.
Questions? Get more details online at HealthyMichiganPlan.org or call (800) 642-3195 (TTY: 1-866-501-5656).
Access to affordable and dependable health care is an issue for people of all ages but, fortunately for older adults, Medicare is an available option.
You may be automatically enrolled in Medicare when you turn 65 if you meet certain conditions. If you aren’t automatically enrolled, you can enroll online in just a few minutes. Simply fill out a Medicare application through the Social Security website at SSA.gov/Benefits/Medicare or visit your local Social Security office.
Medicare is the federal government program that provides health care coverage if you are 65+, under 65 and receiving Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) for a certain amount of time, or under 65 and with End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD).
It offers multiple options for insurance coverage, including planning for hospital stays, medical costs or prescription drugs. In addition, Medicare Advantage through private insurance is available to those who need, or want, additional health care coverage options.
Although the open enrollment period for 2020 has passed, please visit Medicare.gov or call (800) 633-4227 for more information on how you can qualify for coverage after the enrollment period.
For further assistance, you can call Senior Services of Southwest Michigan’s toll-free number at (800) 803-7174. Michigan Medicare Assistance Program counselors are available at no cost to present to local groups and organizations on the following topics:
• Medicare/Medicaid benefits
• Medicare Health and/or Prescription Drug Coverage plans
• Identifying and reporting Medicare or Medicaid fraud, abuse, scams and identity theft
Below is a list of legislation introduced by my colleagues to make life better for seniors in Michigan. Please know that I am planning to introduce legislation in the coming months.
Senate Bill 11
Requires the MI Catastrophic Claims Association to distribute $1.2 billion to those who have paid in excess of actual and anticipated covered claims and expenses.
Senate Bill 13
Repeals the senior tax that was enacted during the 2011 tax reform and business tax cut.
Senate Bill 59
Amends the General Property Tax Act to allow certain seniors to have a partial exemption from their property taxes.
Senate Bill 77
Requires that nursing homes allow the use of electronic devices for the purpose of monitoring patients, so long as the patient or, when applicable, their representative agrees to it.
Senate Bill 464
Creates the Financial Exploitation Prevention Act.
Senate Bill 465
Eliminates the restriction on adult protective services from informing financial institutions of an investigatory status following a financial institution’s elder abuse report.
Senate Bill 538
Amends the Michigan Military Act to raise the retirement payment to $1,200 per year, from $600, for certain military retirees.
House Bill 4171
Allows widowed elders to claim their late spouse as a dependent under certain conditions.
House Elder Abuse Prevention Bills
House Bills 4254-4260 and House Bill 4265 Amend various acts to make it a crime to assault or restrain an elder adult or vulnerable adult; expand a provision of law prohibiting embezzlement from a vulnerable adult to include an elder adult; prescribe penalties; define terms; and amend the sentencing guidelines, among other acts, to account for these changes.
Adult Home Help/Chore Services: (800) 292-2550
Adult Protective Services, for reports of suspected abuse and neglect: (855) 444-3911
Area Agency on Aging 3A: (269) 373-5173
Attorney General – Consumer Protection Division, for cases of identity theft: (877) 765-8388
Attorney General – Office of Elder Abuse: (800) 242-2873
Bridge Card (EBT) – Customer Service: (888) 678-8914
Disability Ombudsman: (800) 288-5923
Domestic Violence Hotline: (800) 799-7233
Elder Law of Michigan, Inc: (866) 400-9164
Elder Care Services for the elderly, for help with transportation, meals, etc. :(800) 677-1116
Elder Law of Michigan, Inc.: (866) 400-9164
Energy Assistance: (800) 292-5650
Food Assistance: (855) 275-6424
Fraud Reporting – Michigan Department of Health & Human Services, 24-hour hotline: (800) 222-8558
Home Heating Tax Credit Status: (517) 636-4486
Kalamazoo County Health and Community Services Department:
Kalamazoo County Long Term Care Ombudsman: (269) 373-5173
Medicaid Customer Help: (800) 642-3195
Medicare Medicaid Assistance Program (MMAP) at the Area Agency on Aging 1B: (800) 803-7174
Medicare, includes Part D for pharmacy: (888) 633-4227
Medicare Savings Program: (800) 772-1213
MI Enrolls – Medicaid Managed Care: (888) 367-6557
Michigan Department of Health & Human Services, Medicaid Beneficiary Support: (800) 642-3195
Michigan Stroke Network: (866) 522-8676
Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency: (800) 642-4838
National Alliance on Mental Illness (NMI): (810) 232-6498
Nursing Home Complaints: (800) 882-6006
Relay Center for Deaf and Hard of Hearing: 7-1-1
Senior Services of Southwest Michigan/Meals on Wheels: (269) 382-0515 Sexual Assault Crisis Intervention: (517) 372-6666
Social Security Administration: (800) 772-1213
State SSI Supplement: (800) 481-4774
Substance Abuse Hotline: (800) 662-4357
Suicide Prevention Crisis Hotline: (800) 273-8255
TAX statements for Adult Home Help: (800) 292-2550
THAW – The Heat and Warmth Fund: (800) 552-1183
Volunteers of America: (248) 945-0101
Vulnerable Adult Services: (800) 996-6228
Sign up to be the first to know what I'm doing to build a thriving community and fight for you.
First Name is required
Last Name is required
Email Address is required
Zip Code is required
We take your privacy seriously.