Each year on December 1st, we join millions of individuals and organizations around the globe in commemorating World AIDS Day. The prevention of HIV/AIDS – as well as the continued care of those living with HIV – has always been a top priority for the Diverse Elders Coalition and the communities we represent.
It’s that time of year: Affordable Care Act Open Enrollment on Healthcare.gov. From now until January 31, 2017, Americans can elect to purchase healthcare coverage for 2017. And while there has been a lot of discussion about the cost of Obamacare for consumers, more than 70% of consumers will be able to find an insurance plan on the Marketplace that will cost them less than $75/month.
“Thanks to financial assistance, most Marketplace consumers this year will find plan options with premiums between $50 and $100 per month,” said HHS Secretary Sylvia M. Burwell. “Millions of uninsured Americans qualify for financial assistance, and so could as many as 2.5 million Americans currently paying full price for off-Marketplace coverage. I encourage anyone.... Read More
Automatic Injustice: A Report on Prosecutorial Discretion in the Southeast Asian American Community
On Wednesday, October 26, I attended a webinar for the launch of the Southeast Asia Resource Action Center (SEARAC)’s new report, “Automatic Injustice: A Report on Prosecutorial Discretion in the Southeast Asian American Community.” The Southeast Asian American (SEAA) community has been heavily impacted by automatic, mandatory criminal deportation policies. This community faces unique struggles as refugees, which have made them vulnerable to high levels of criminalization over the last four decades. SEAA families are routinely torn apart by these policies, with individuals being deported to countries they once fled – or countries in which they have never actually set foot. When our families are dismantled, it means less support, fewer caregiving options, trauma, illness, stress, and so.... Read More
Celebrating NICOA’s 40th Anniversary and the Resilience of AI/AN Elders
Earlier this month, I had the great honor of attending the National Indian Council on Aging, Inc. (NICOA) biennial conference in Niagara Falls, NY, in celebration of NICOA’s 40th anniversary. The event brought together over 1300 people representing numerous tribes from the United States and Canada, showcasing the resilience of and challenges facing American Indian/Alaska Native (AI/AN) communities as they age. Three full days of panel discussions, workshops, a traditional meal, and dancing allowed us to learn from one another and take pride in Native heritage and tribal identity.
Though the NICOA conference has been held every two years since NICOA’s founding in 1976, this was my first time attending the conference. I was floored by the number.... Read More
Commemorating National HIV/AIDS and Aging Awareness Day 2016
Each year on September 18th, we commemorate National HIV/AIDS and Aging Awareness Day, a chance to recognize that HIV/AIDS impacts people of all ages, including adults over 50. In fact, by the year 2020, more than 70% of people living with HIV in the United States will be age 50 or older, and 18% of new HIV diagnoses occur among people over 50. It is important to promote both HIV prevention among older adults as well as support the health and social needs of those who are living with the disease.
The Diverse Elders Coalition has a number of resources available on our website.... Read More
“I’m sick of worrying about how I’m going to make it from one day to the next.”
On September 8, a group of advocates and stakeholders met in Washington, DC and on the phone from around the country to attend the Social Security Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015 Briefing. Bonnie Kind, the Associate Commissioner for Budget, began the meeting by discussing the FY17 budget for the Social Security Administration. On average, Bonnie reported, 68 million people receive Social Security benefits each month – and Social Security benefits keep 21 million people out of poverty each year. Unfortunately, Social Security is facing budget challenges that may impact SSA’s ability to deliver quality services to its recipients. Claims are.... Read More
Civic Engagement: Diverse Elders Tell Their Stories to ACL
Today, the Diverse Elders Coalition delivered 4,710 comments to the federal government’s Administration for Community Living (ACL) in response to the ACL’s public comment period on their Guidance for the Development and Submission of State Plans on Aging, State Plan Amendments and the Intrastate Funding Formula. Our coalition members’ comments highlight the unique aging needs of diverse elders in the United States and demand that the ACL’s guidance to state aging programs explicitly acknowledge and meet the needs of American Indian/Alaska Native elders, Asian American/Pacific Islander elders, Black elders, Hispanic elders, and LGBT elders.
Empowering our community members to tell their stories and advocate for their needs is.... Read More
Next Monday, August 22nd, is the deadline for submitting your comments to the Administration for Community Living (ACL) about what diverse communities need to age successfully. Our #TellACL campaign has encouraged elders around the country to speak up about what matters to us as we get older.
On Thursday, August 11th, the Diverse Elders Coalition and Caring Across Generations hosted an online day of action around the #TellACL campaign, including a Twitter chat. This chat brought together elders, caregivers, and advocacy organizations from around the country to talk about the needs of American Indian/Alaska Native elders, Asian.... Read More
Civic Engagement: Join us for a #TellACL Online Day of Action on 8/11
Have you heard about our #TellACL civic engagement campaign with Caring Across Generations? We want our communities to tell the Administration for Community Living (ACL) what we need to age successfully. Whether that means aging services in your native language, better access to healthcare that accounts for cultural traditions, better data collection on your community, or something else, we want to hear from you!
This Thursday, August 11th, at 2pm EDT, we’ll be hosting a Twitter chat using hashtag #TellACL. We hope you’ll join us to talk about the aging.... Read More
Shattering Stigma: Tell Your Story for Minority Mental Health Awareness Month
July is National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month, and at the Diverse Elders Coalition, we’re working to shine a spotlight on the unique mental health needs of our elders of color, American Indian/Alaska Native elders, and LGBTQ elders.
Research by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) shows that mental illness affects one in five American adults, yet nearly two-thirds of people with a diagnosable mental illness do not seek treatment. For American Indian/Alaska Native communities, as many as 28% of adults may be living with a mental illness; LGBTQ adults experience even higher rates of mental illness (40%)..... Read More
Bringing Elders and Youth Together to Learn Language, Life Skills
I am a huge fan of intergenerational programming. Both children and elders can feel silenced by a world that tends to privilege people of other ages, and there’s something powerful about meeting and learning from the people who’ve come before or the people who will usher in the future. As a teenager in upstate New York, I volunteered most weekends at the assisted living facility where my grandmother resided. It was an opportunity for me to spend more time with my grandma and give back to my community — something that was already starting to feel important in my budding social justice activist soul. I’d help staff run activities in the facility’s large common area or assist with more menial tasks,.... Read More
May is an exciting month at the Diverse Elders Coalition. Our communities, which are so often left out of mainstream conversations, are highlighted nationally in two different ways during the month of May: not only is it Asian American/Pacific Islander Heritage Month, which allows our AAPI elders take the spotlight, it is also Older Americans Month, which celebrates the legacies and supports the future of all of our diverse elders. We love seeing the many ways in which our communities are working together to honor each other during May and all throughout the year.
The theme for this year’s Asian American/Pacific Islander Heritage Month is “Walk Together, Embrace Differences, Build Legacies.” I love this theme, not only because it celebrates.... Read More