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lems. They have the printed information and are already established. For example, in North Carolina the Governor's Coordinating Committee on the Aging designated the State library to be the center for it had the materials and was in actual operation.

(4) By skillfully selected book lists and other reading aids, libraries make known appropriate books and related materials for senior citizens and for persons interested or involved in the problems of the aging. Some random examples are: “Books for Tired Eyes," issued by the American Library Association and listing books by size of type; “Easy on the Eyes," which the Cleveland Public Library prepared with the problem of vision in mind; “Aging Successfully" and “Hobbies for Older People," printed by the Newark (N.J.) Public Library.

(5) Public libraries provide reading equipment to lessen handicaps for some of the aging population. Many have magnifying devices; special books for the blind, including braille and talking books; and ceiling projectors. For instance, the Racine (Wis.) Public Library is one of many providing ceiling book projectors to bedridden persons. With the mere push of a button by a finder or even the chin the machine projects easy-to-read print on the ceiling. The classics, historical novels, the Bible—these are typical materials available on film.

(6) Libraries cooperate closely with organizations working with aging problems. These services may be either library sponsored or else support the programs of other organizations. Lectures, discussion groups, displays, film series, and the provision of meeting rooms are among the means used. Some examples reported are:

The Miami (Fla.) Public Library, cooperating with the Mental Health Society of Greater Miami, presented a series of film and lecture programs titled “Living Can Be Fun With Good Mental Health." Though planned for adults of all ages, several sessions concerned retirement, housing, and other subjects having special meaning for the aged.

The Scarsdale (N.Y.) Public Library offers bookcase service twice a month through its Friends of the Public Library and the Junior League.

Although the public library has been mentioned specifically a number of times, other types also figure in the problem. Hospital and institutional' libraries have been face to face with the question for some time. State libraries also have a concern with it.

School librarians can watch for and use with teachers, children, and young adults, books and periodicals which deal with the problems of tħe older population. Nearly all of the younger generation have some contact with elderly persons, and need to be prepared for the situation.

Likewise, with the increasing interest in college and university courses touching on geriatrics, college libraries are providing reading materials on the subject for the faculty and students. Such libraries cooperate fully with any institutes on aging problems.

The American Library Association maintains, therefore, that libraries are a positive factor in dealing with the aging and that any recommendations made by the committee should take into consideration the potentialities of libraries in this important activity of giving full

time attention to the needs and problems of the more than 17 million older citizens.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman, for this opportunity to present the views of the American Library Association.

Mr. BAILEY. Any questions, Mr. Frelinghuysen?

Mr. FRELINGHUYSEN. I have no questions, Mr. Chairman, except to say that as a former trustee of the library in my hometown, I sympathize with the objectives of your association and appreciate your testimony. Your testimony reminded me that we still have not enacted the college facilities bill, which I regret very much, and I only hope we do it before the session ends.

Miss HUBBARD. We share that regret.

Mr. BAILEY. May the Chair say to the lady that we are very much concerned. We think that we have made strides in the library program throughout the Nation, but it has been confined pretty much to rural activities, and we have made wonderful progress in that area.

I might say to her that it will be the purpose of this committee to consider the matter of enlarging our library program; that is, to make it much broader and include a lot more people than it is presently serving.

Miss HUBBARD. We are very pleased to hear you say that, Mr. Chairman.

Mr. BAILEY. We hope to have the pleasure of your coming back and testifying and giving us some more of your words of wisdom.

Miss HUBBARD. Thank you very much. It is great courtesy on your part to let us be here.

Mr. BAILEY. The final witness for the afternoon is Mr. William Fitch, American Association of Retired Persons.

Mr. FRELINGHUYSEN. I am disappointed, Mr. Chairman. What happened to Mr. Casofsky?

Mr. BAILEY. He is marked off my list, here. The Chair might inquire if the gentleman is present in the committee room?

He has called off his appearance. So you are the final witness, Mr.
Fitch. Will you further identify yourself to the reporter and proceed
with your testimony?
STATEMENT OF MR. WILLIAM C. FITCH, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR,

NATIONAL RETIRED TEACHERS ASSOCIATION, AMERICAN ASSOCIATION OF RETIRED PERSONS Mr. FITCH. Mr. Chairman, members of the committee, my name is William C. Fitch. I am the executive director of the National Retired Teachers Association and the American Association of Retired Persons. These are nonprofit, nonpolitical organizations with over 500,000 members working together, to achieve independence, dignity, and purpose throughout the later years.

On behalf of the associations, I would like to express our appreciation for this opportunity to speak in favor of the Fogarty-McNamara bills creating a U.S. Commission on Aging. We would also like to commend your committee for the series of hearings you have been conducting across the Nation giving people at the grassroots the privilege of person-to-person presentations of their problems and recommendations.

Our associations were the first to break the insurance barriers making it possible for persons 65 years of age and older to obtain hospital and medical care, we have provided a drug service that will stretch their retirement dollars, and have made high-quality hearing aids available at reductions of 25 percent, 331/3 percent. We operate a beautiful residence for retired teachers, have a nursing home, and have acquired a resort hotel for housing our nonteacher members. For those who are travel minded, we maintain a hospitality house in St. Petersburg, Fla., and a European travel service. To share helpful information, to inspire and to encourage our members, we have magazines and news bulletins for each of our associations.

Because our members are mindful of their responsibility as citizens and their desire to be of service, they are active in the Veterans Administration Volunteer Service, Red Cross, hosiptal and nursing home programs.

As one of the largest, if not the largest membership organizations of older persons, we believe we have an important public service to perform in creating better understanding of the problems of aging, to correct outdated concepts about them, and to assist responsible public and private agencies working in the field of aging.

Toward tħese goals, we took a very active part in the preparations for the White House Conference on Aging, at the State and local meetings, as well as at the national conference. Our president, Dr. Ethel Percy Andrus, was a member of the National Advisory Committee. We had 6 official delegates and 42 of our members were chosen as representatives from their States.

We sponsored a forum in St. Petersburg, Fla., prior to the White House Conference on Aging, to gather the opinions of older persons on the issues to be discussed. Over 1,300 persons registered. We commissioned a play to be written on the problems of compulsory retirement and meaningful use of free time, and offered it at no cost to organizations and community leaders for study and action. : Our staff serves as advisers and consultants to government at all levels, organizations, and individuals working on problems of aging or retirement preparation. Approximately 100 employers give membership in our associations to their retirees.

I outline our program and goals at such length only that you might better understand that our reasons for endorsing an independent Commission on Aging do not stem from a self-centered, special-interest, pressure group. We believe it is our obligation and responsibility to urge favorable consideration of the Fogarty-McNamara bills because of our firsthand knowledge of the facts and our sincere desire to have a national program on aging that will utilize the total resources at our command and recognize the needs and rights of older persons as individuals. They resent being considered as statistics and percentages; they have lost confidence in conferences and meetings that have resulted in eloquent oratory, excellent reports, and no action; they distrust officials who make sweeping campaign promises that are too soon forgotten, and quite frankly, have begun to question whether the Federal program in aging is anything more than a token gesture window or a sop to gullible oldsters or naive do-gooders.

I have had a deep personal concern in the total problems of aging for almost 25 years. I served approximately 19 years with the Social Security Administration in administrative positions on field, regional,

and central office staffs; I was the first Director of the Special Staff on Aging in the Office of the Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare; served as Secretary of the Federal Council on Aging; was Staff Director on the White House Conference on Aging until accepting my present position.

I am a member of the board of directors of the National Council on the Aging, legislative chairman of the Adult Education Association of the U.S.A.; adviser to the Departments of Labor, HEW, Treasury, Agriculture, and Fort Belvoir on retirement planning; consultant to the Office of Education; and a member of the Panel of Consultants on Aging, recently appointed by Secretary Ribicoff.

This personal history is provided only to document my experience and qualifications to speak on the advantages of an independent Commission on Aging.

From the inception of the Commission on Aging, within the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, it has been difficult to coordinate all of the many problems affecting the aging. So widespread were some of the activities, that separate committees on aging were established within the Social Security Administration and the Public Health Service. Without implying inefficiency on the part of any of those responsible for directing this

activity, there has never been, nor is there now a well-coordinated program on aging within HEW.

The Special Staff on Aging from its beginning has continued to suffer from inadequate staff, insufficient funds, lack of prestige within the Department and often indifferent support of the Secretary to whose office the staff is attached more on paper than personal relationship.

It should also be emphasized that the Special Staff on Aging was never intended to serve as an operating program, but a coordinating unit, information center on aging and adviser on aging to the Secretary.

The Federal Council on Aging, the outgrowth of an interdepartmental work group, has as its purpose the cooperation and coordination of the many outgoing activities in aging throughout the Federal Government.

The need to know about other Government programs was obvious, but the reluctance to assign high-level staff, finance the project, or develop sustained interest was ever present.

In spite of reconstituting the Council at Cabinet level with the Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare as chairman, the general impression has persisted that, located in the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, the Council is primarily the tool of the Department and not a shared responsibility or matter of deep concern to any of the other members. This accounts for the failure of the Council to agree on a single major policy, undertake any significant project, introduce or sponsor a single bill or be recognized in the field as the focal point for Federal information or action in the field of aging.

The organizational structure and channels of communication with the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, work at crosspurposes with an effective program in aging.

Mr. FRELINGHUYSEN. I don't know whether to interrupt you or not on this, Mr. Fitch, but I am very much interested in this alleged failure of the existing organizations in the Government to do more about the problems of aging than they have.

You say that the Federal Council on Aging, as an example, has failed to agree on a single major policy and to undertake any significant projects, and so on, because of an impression that it is a tool of the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare. Well, if it is just an impression that is preventing them from becoming effective, is it not a simple thing to correct a misapprehension and not worry about a change in the structure of our Government? If it were something more fundamental than an impression, I would go along with your argument that we need a change in the structure. But if it is simply the fact that it has not been utilized, that is not any argument for saying it cannot be utilized to get the job done more effectively than is presently the case.

Mr. FITCH. I think that would be a fair observation. I suppose the impression is an understatement of the facts.

Mr. FRELINGHUYSEN. What is the fact? I am very much interested in why we have had such a consistent delegation of the Federal Council on Aging and the Special Staff on the Aging within HEW.

Mr. Fitch. I have appreciated your questions, and I think if I were sitting where you are I might have asked the same ones, because logically it might seem as if this is the way it would work. Actually, in terms first of all

of not having any real budget, this was the problem of the Federal Council to begin with. It was staffed in the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, and the staff or the secretariat for it was actually provided from the Special Staff on Aging, at one time, and then it was made separate and trying to get even funds from some of the other departments to have a budget for the Council was not an easy assignment, and as a matter of fact, I believe there are only about three other organizations or departments that did contribute even small amounts to try to have a separate budget for the Federal Council on Aging.

The major part of it was contributed, because of the larger program, I suppose, in HEW. But it was not possible to get funds from other departments to help it. From the standpoint of most of the planning, it was done within HEW; even though we would ask for suggestions and comments from other departments, actually it never came true. And it always seemed as though this was a program for the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare.

We did have some of the programs that looked as though we might be getting somewhere in terms of policies, but then when it got up to the level where some of the decisions were to be made, whether it was because they did not have the background of the discussion, or whatever the reason, frequently it was pigeonholed or it was decided it was something for another department to handle. But realistically we almost had one at one time, and then just about at the point of its being available to the press someone had a change of heart and the whole action of the Council was rescinded at that point. And the policy just never came into being.

So it was—I started to say "the impression," again, and this is the understatement. In fact, actually, the interest that other departments seemed to manifest in an interdepartmental program was never evident.

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