Proclamation 5635 -- Older Americans Month, 1987

April 21, 1987

By the President of the United States

of America

A Proclamation

Throughout our history, we Americans have always cherished our God-given rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, and our freedom of opportunity. We have fought wars for them, and we have created a system of limited constitutional government to perpetuate them. We have also voluntarily joined together to enhance life and guarantee opportunity for our neighbors when the need has arisen.

We should bear these truths in mind as the number of older Americans increases -- and we should remember that one day all of us will also become older Americans. Our older citizens have lived lives of achievement and have sacrificed much for our country and for each of us. They possess a wealth of experience, talent, and wisdom and a willingness to share them. Older Americans cherish their freedom and independence and want to remain in their homes and communities as active and contributing citizens. To help senior citizens reach this goal, we can fulfill our responsibilities as family members and friends, and we can also work to create community systems of services for them.

Much has been done already, but much remains to be done. Under the Older Americans Act, local and State agencies on aging were established to plan, develop, and coordinate services to help older people remain in their own homes and communities as long as possible. People in every town, city, neighborhood, and rural community have the challenge and the opportunity to lay the foundation for their own truly responsive community systems for older Americans.

The Congress, by Senate Joint Resolution 64, has requested the President to proclaim May 1987 as ``Older Americans Month.''

Now, Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim the month of May 1987 as Older Americans Month. I ask public officials at all levels, business and civic leaders, and all Americans to become concerned about the welfare of our Nation's older people, to consider ways to ensure the independence of older people by using community resources to forge a system of comprehensive and coordinated services for them, and to work to establish such systems in each community.

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-first day of April, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and eighty-seven, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and eleventh.

Ronald Reagan

[Filed with the Office of the Federal Register, 2:25 p.m., April 22, 1987]

Note: The proclamation was released by the Office of the Press Secretary on April 22.