There’s an Invisible Barrier Impacting our Aging... Do you know what it is?
We want to live easily in our homes and communities and have the best quality of life possible as we age. But there’s an invisible barrier threatening how we do that.
This barrier blocks our job choices, limits our opportunities to do the interesting things we desire, and prevents our community from making policy changes that could broaden our choices on where we live.
Many of us don’t understand that things could be better or even acknowledge the barrier exists.
This invisible barrier has a name – it’s called ageism and when it’s removed:
- Employers have programs and policies in place that promote an age-inclusive workforce and consider qualified older applicants for jobs
- More ordinances are in place that support innovative housing options, like converting a garage or adding a tiny house to a property
- There are plenty of paved surfaces wide enough for strollers and wheelchairs to travel safely and easily, with ample seating in shaded areas
- People understand one’s value isn’t based on what they look like or what they can do compared to others
- We seek out older people’s wisdom and life experiences
- Housing is close to a grocery store, doctor’s office, and public transportation stops
- Outdoor spaces and public buildings are accessible with plenty of parking
- People connect with others, even if living alone or without the Internet
Eliminating ageism requires everyone, across all ages and sectors, sharing, working, and learning together.
With people living longer, we are doing and spending more, and reimagining life beyond traditional retirement age. Without changes to our community’s physical and organizational structures, and without attitudes and culture that embraces aging, the quality of life for people of all ages will be compromised.
It’s time to recognize the strengths we each bring based on our age. We need a community where all generations work together, have choices and options on where and how they want to live, and have opportunities to engage and connect how we like to.
That’s the York County I want to live in. An age-friendly community that builds our ability to adapt and has our backs as we age. I invite you to join me.
York County Community Foundation’s Embracing Aging improves how people experience aging by making people aware of ageism and its impact and helping organizations be more age friendly. Contact Cathy Bollinger, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 717-848-3733 to learn more about our free resources to disrupt ageism and to join our movement to usher in a new age in York County.