In order for New York to be a fair city for all ages, the DFTA service system must be financially supported at levels reflective of the needs it serves. At a time of historical demographic increases for the aging population, the DFTA budget is well under 1% of the city budget…
While services such as senior centers, home-delivered meals or affordable senior housing with services are non-medical by definition, their impact has a uniquely positive effect on the overall health of a senior and a reduction in costs that would otherwise be imposed to our healthcare system. For example, data has shown that the majority of the seniors that go to a senior center receive more than half of their daily nutritional intake from meals they eat at the center.
The work of community based service providers also has significant health impacts from lowering rates of depression, to preventing isolation, to even reducing hospitalization rates for older adults, and more. For example, given that studies now show that loneliness surpasses obesity as an early predictor of morbidity, the ability for senior centers to provide socialization opportunities is key to combating this risk-factor.
Prior to illuminating the very real challenges that often exist for older adults in the workplace, we must step back and recognize the obvious but often underappreciated fact that aging is, in fact, a life process. By this we mean that we are all aging: that 50 is not the same as 85, nor are 75 or 45 monolithic experiences to be benchmarked by a standard set of life events. We all experience life, and aging, differently and deserve the opportunity to thrive in accordance with our own drive, desires, limitations, and values, no matter the age. For some, this may mean an early and long-awaited retirement; for others, a second act in an unexplored career path; for most, however, it means the continued economic pressures of an often unequal society.
“Older New Yorkers have built this city, and continue to do so, through volunteering, civic engagement, caregiving, and community building,” states Allison Nickerson, Executive Director of LiveOn NY. “Despite their role in strengthening this City, we remain concerned that older New Yorkers and the community-based providers working tirelessly to serve this population are being left out of the gains made in this budget…” Read More