As the baby-boom generation reaches retirement, America's population is steadily growing older, and our nation must be ready to address the needs of seniors and ensure they are secure in their golden years.
I believe our nation can and must provide quality healthcare to all of America's seniors, and that starts with preserving and improving Medicare. I am also fighting to lower drug prices for our seniors. In the first 100 hours, with my strong support, the House of Representatives passed the Medicare Prescription Drug Price Negotiation Act. This legislation will require the Secretary of Health and Human Services to negotiate with drug companies for lower prescription drug prices for older Americans. While that was a major step forward, I will continue to work to ensure that all our nation's seniors will have access to affordable, high-quality healthcare.
Another key issue is Social Security. This safety-net program is one of the most successful domestic initiatives in our nation's history, preventing millions of Americans from slipping below the poverty line. Social Security protects more than 1,825,000 workers across the Commonwealth of Kentucky and pays benefits to more than 700,000 Kentuckians through its retirement, disability, and survivors programs.
If we want to protect the retirement security and financial well-being of future generations Social Security privatization is a gamble the country cannot afford to take. If we adopt a more fiscally responsible approach that protects the current safeguards of the system, we can preserve Social Security for generations.
Keeping our seniors safe from criminal attacks is another priority. I am proud to have cosponsored and supported the Elder Justice Act, which will protect our cherished generations of older Americans. Five million American seniors are victims of abuse or neglect every year, and this legislation takes great strides to safeguard them.
How we care for our seniors is a measure of how who we are as a nation. Far too often, older Americans find themselves without proper care, victims of unreported crimes, or struggling to pay the bills. After a lifetime of work, our seniors should have peace of mind, knowing that they will have a secure and safe retirement.