Age friendly states that focus on the needs of senior citizens are increasing across the United States. Why is that? It’s probably due to the U.S. Census Bureau predicting that by 2035, seniors aged 65+ will outnumber people 18 and younger. For the very first time in American history, seniors will outnumber the young people.
No doubt, this is due to the remarkable progress made in science and medicine plus the constant reminders on how to live and stay healthy.
Age Friendly States: How Do You Decide?
Great question. You have reached your golden years, your children are grown and out of the house. perhaps you live in a cold climate and want the warmer weather?
Of course, now in your 60’s, your priorities and outlook have changed. The Census Bureau recommends that you ask yourselves and focus on these questions:
- 1. Is public transportation easily accessible?
- 2. Are there parks and walking paths for exercise?
- 3. How easy is it to make and maintain friendships?
- 4. Is medical care convenient?
- 5. Is there affordable housing?
- 6. What kind of health and community support is available?
- 7. Are there employment opportunities for senior citizens?
A recent AARP study found that 76 percent of Americans 50 and older, want to stay in their current homes but less than half can afford to stay. Therefore, cities and states have become more age-friendly. So far, 332 communities nationwide and three states — Colorado, New York and Massachusetts — have become members of the AARP Network of Age Friendly States.
What’s Being Done
In many localities, lawmakers and local organizations are making big and small changes to benefit senior citizens. For example, changes in transportation, housing, technology and health care that improve seniors quality of life are being made.
To give you a few examples of States that are making changes to help seniors, consider the following:
Colorado is focusing on age discrimination and considering giving tax benefits to employers that hire older workers.
New York is investing $125 million in affordable housing for low-income and older adults.
And Massachusetts has established a Governor’s Council to Address Aging, that promote healthy aging and improving quality of life.
Seniors can be assured they will not be ignored in their senior years.