Growing up in an immigrant household, I was raised to respect my elders. Their needs were to be looked after, and their wisdom was to not to be questioned. Often, that came into conflict in our suburban New Jersey community, where American cultural values of exceptionalism and individualism, perhaps subconsciously, told me that my upbringing in the States made me more of an authority on “how things worked” than my immigrant parents, who couldn’t possibly understand what I was going through in a world so different from their own. As I myself have grown and played a small role in helping raise my twin brother’s children, I am more appreciative of the challenges immigrants have overcome and the value of.... Read More
The Status of Older Adults: Recommendations from the Field
In just a few short years, the U.S. will have more seniors than youth under 18 for the first time in history. Yet today, our seniors face a host of difficulties that prevent them from aging with dignity, the best possible health and security. This is especially true of Hispanic older adults and other diverse seniors. Twenty percent of Hispanic older adults live in poverty and many more live in economic insecurity, often marked by hunger and a lack of quality housing and medical care. In addition, many Hispanic seniors lack access to long-term services and supports and are victims of financial abuse, neglect and fraud.
Today is National HIV and Aging Awareness Day (NHAAAD), celebrated each year on September 18th to mark the unique challenges of being an elder with HIV. The following is a speech given by Herbie Taylor at our May 7th WHCOA Town Hall in Los Angeles, CA. For more information on NHAAAD, visit our HIV and Aging webpage, or join us for a free webinar on Monday, September 21st from 2-3pm EDT with Grantmakers in Aging.
By Guest Contributor, Herbie Taylor. Herbie is a 63-year-old Gay man of color who is retired, disabled, sober for 18+ years, a.... Read More
National Indian Council on Aging, Inc. (NICOA) and the 2015 White House Conference on Aging
The 2015 White House Conference on Aging was a unique experience. It did not follow the traditional path of previous White House Conferences primarily due to the lack of funding and authorizing legislation in support of the process this year. Despite these obstacles, President Obama, Nora Super and the Administration for Community Living were able to create a new approach and focus the nation’s attention on aging issues. Given these challenges, it was a bold accomplishment.
Like others in the Aging Community, I wondered how the virtual format and regional forums would be implemented. My concern was that technology might interfere with direct communication and hinder the process. Many in tribal areas would not be able to participate.... Read More
40 Years in the Making: Southeast Asian Americans and the 2015 White House Conference on Aging
As the Executive Director of the Southeast Asia Resource Action Center (SEARAC) and a member of the Diverse Elders Coalition (DEC), I was honored to be invited to the 2015 White House Conference on Aging. Knowing that the conference only takes place once every ten years, I felt a large sense of responsibility as one of a small group of participants selected to be in the room that day as President Obama helped focus the nation’s attention on the elders in our communities. Many have been observing the anniversaries of important milestones for aging policy that are taking place this year: the 50th anniversary of the Older Americans Act on July 14, the 50th anniversary of Medicare.... Read More
NHCOA Responds to the 2015 White House Conference on Aging
The White House Conference on Aging, which took place on July 13th, was inspiring for us at the National Hispanic Council on Aging (NHCOA) and for all those working on behalf of the U.S.’s diverse aging communities. As the President and CEO of NHCOA, I had the honor and privilege to be invited to attend this critically important event and to represent older Latinos.
The White House Conference on Aging takes place every 10 years and is a catalyst for the national policy agenda in reference to aging for the next decade. This year, the White House Conference on Aging was particularly historic because it concurred with the 50th anniversary of Medicare, Medicaid and the Older Americans.... Read More
NAPCA’s Response to the 2015 White House Conference on Aging
Convening the 2015 White House Conference on Aging (WHCOA) was no easy task with its limited budget, minimal staffing, and a relatively short planning process. In spite of these challenges, the WHCOA delivered high-quality and thought-provoking discussions that allowed the nation to reflect on our assumptions of aging, to be inspired by innovation, and to be meaningfully engaged in the democratic process.
I resonated with JoAnn Jenkins’ presentation on “disruptive aging” whereby she challenged us to redefine what it means to age. When applying this concept to our spheres of influence in our aging network, I believe that we need to (1) be open to new philosophies and values that root us in our missions, (2).... Read More
In the summer of 2010, I had just been through a nasty breakup and could no longer afford my once-shared apartment in Manhattan. I was working from home at the time, so it was easy for me to sublet the place and find new digs, but I also needed to get some fresh air and clear my cloudy head. Traveling seemed like the way to go, and with friends spread out around the country, I felt confident that I could find a place to stay wherever I landed. So I purchased an unlimited rail pass on the Amtrak, sent my cats to live with a friend (I still don’t think they’ve forgiven me for that) and bounced between the east and west coasts for.... Read More
History in the Making: Reflections on the White House Conference on Aging for Diverse Elders
The 2015 White House Conference on Aging (WHCOA) took place this past Monday, and as the dust settles, we get the opportunity to take stock of the events on July 13th as well as the events leading up to the day. For the Diverse Elders Coalition, this week is the culmination of months of work including engagement with local partners, extensive policy analysis, and working directly with the White House Conference on Aging and other policymakers. With clear goals of articulating the experiences of elders of color, American Indian/Alaska Native elders, and LGBT elders, and identifying specific policy recommendations, the DEC, its member organizations, and their constituents came to Washington, DC with a firm sense of.... Read More
Positive Momentum: Reflecting on Yesterday’s White House Conference on Aging
In the days and weeks following the White House Conference on Aging, we’ll be highlighting our community members’ experiences and reflections from this historic event. Today, we’re sharing Michael Adams’ take on what the WHCOA means for LGBTQ elders. This post originally appeared on the SAGE blog.
I’m excited to report that Monday’s White House Conference on Aging included some major breakthroughs for SAGE and LGBT older people across the country. In recent months, SAGE has prepared diligently to ensure that LGBT voices would be heard at this influential conference, held every ten years. As I listened to an inspiring and impassioned statement to conference leaders from iconic LGBT aging activist Sandy Warshaw, who called for.... Read More