9. June 2015 14:44
by Nora Super
Over the past year, I've traveled all over America to hear from older Americans, caregivers, advocates, researchers, and local leaders engaged in broadening options for older Americans. As we prepare for the White House Conference on Aging, the dialogue we've had in cities across the country has involved ensuring that we have diverse voices as part of the conversation.
Over the past 50 years, older populations in our country have seen dramatic change. Giant strides have been made to ensure equal access and treatment for all older adults. However, work remains. Older adults from communities of color and the LGBT community are disproportionately low income and have poorer health throughout their lifetimes. We must ensure that services for older adults in these communities are culturally responsive to their needs.
While in Seattle, on a visit with Asian older adults at the Asian Counseling and Referral Services, elders shared how having the opportunity to connect with others who share their culture and language improves their overall health and sense of purpose. Participants relished the opportunity to take dance and exercise classes and share meals unique to their cultures.