MORRIS COUNTY, NJ – The Board of County Commissioners Wednesday declared May 2021 “Older Americans Month” in Morris County, as Commissioner Director Stephen Shaw and Deputy Directory Deborah Smith presented a special proclamation during the board’s public meeting.
Christine Hellyer, Division Director of the Morris County Office on Aging, Disabilities & Community Programming, joined Tom Mazzaccaro, Chairman of the Morris County Advisory Council on Aging, Disabilities and Veterans, in accepting the proclamation. The presentation was livestreamed from the Commissioner Director’s county office in Morristown during the board’s scheduled, public work session.
“Morris County can enhance the lives of older Americans in our community by promoting home and community-based services that continue independent living; maintaining the participation of older adults in community events and other activities, and providing opportunities for older adults to work, volunteer, learn, lead, and mentor,” said Director Shaw, reading a portion of the proclamation.
“Thank you to the Commissioners for all your support for older adults, especially throughout the pandemic period,” said Hellyer, noting the many services that continued operating through her office over the past year. “I just want to say thank for your support, and to our providers and to our staff.”
Mazzaccaro, noting he is a volunteer appointee on the Advisory Council, praised what he described as the determined dedication to seniors, veterans and people with disabilities regularly exhibited by Kasey Errico, the Director of the Morris County Human Services Department, and Hellyer, whose office operates under the umbrella of the Human Services department.
“The Morris County Commissioners have continuously supported older Americans through many, fully-funded programs, as evidenced here today,” Mazzaccaro added, thanking the county.
“Older Americans come in many varieties, shapes and forms,” Mazzaccaro said. “They are the backbone of Morris County. There are 85,000 older Americans in Morris County, which represents 2o percent of our population. That’s a tremendous number. They are probably a higher percentage of voters in the county, so elected officials – keep that in mind.”
The Morris County Advisory Council on Aging, Disabilities and Veterans is an appointed group of community representatives, professionals and consumers who meet to discuss and advocate for issues of importance to area seniors, persons with disabilities, and veterans. Members are appointed annually by the Commissioners and serve without salary.