• Gray Panthers NYC Board

Taking Action: Recap of Gray Panthers NYC Town Hall with Assembly Member Ron Kim

At our most recent Transformation Tuesday on October 25, 2022, Gray Panthers hosted a town hall with Assembly Member Ron Kim, the Chair of the New York State Assembly Committee on Aging.


At the town hall, Assembly Member Kim focused on our broken long-term care system in New York State, as well as what systemic changes are needed and how advocates—both individuals and organizations alike—can play a role in those changes.

The issues that the assembly member believes to be hampering the long-care system in New York are hardly surprising, given that they are flaws that make the larger American health care “system” broken: a focus on profits instead of people, the devaluing of people who need care, the need for better laws, and the need for better regulations on existing laws.


Assembly Member Kim views the solutions to our system to be multi-pronged, including, but not limited, to:

  • Treating our long-term care system like infrastructure that we need to rebuild.

  • The signing of the Grieving Families Act by Governor Kathy Hochul, which would allow families of wrongful death victims to get compensation for emotional anguish.

  • Funding for the Long Term Care Ombudsman Program.

  • Memorializing those who passed in long-term care facilities.

  • Recognizing how ageism desensitizes the way we think about older persons who pass away in long-term care facilities.

  • Accountability on the laws already on the books, with the accountability coming from the New York State Department of Health.

When talking about what to do in order to improve the long-term care system in New York, it was equally noteworthy that the assembly member specifically mentioned that simply improving payments to providers is not the solution. This is noteworthy because this is the idea oftentimes pushed by some in the long-term care industry.


At the end of the town hall, Assembly Member Kim had a couple of calls to action. First, he made it clear that he is looking for people with knowledge on Social Impact Bonds. Second, he hopes that advocates can continue calling on Governor Hochul to sign the Grieving Families Act—something that Gray Panthers did in a previous blog post. Albeit, since that post, Governor Hochul has still not signed the bill into law.


Click here to contact Governor Hochul and tell her that she should sign this bill once it arrives on her desk.