Rethinking Elder Care – Ageism

Elder Care – Ageism

Along with sexism and racism, there is an often subtler form of discrimination permeating our society, ageism. I’m Jim Metzner and this is the Pulse of the Planet.

Roberto: Unfortunately ageism is rampant in our society. We look at older adults and we want to group them all under one umbrella.

Karen Roberto is a university distinguished professor of gerontology at Virginia Tech.

Roberto: We have these stereotypes and images that older adults are sick. Or they’re all needy. That becomes very important because there’s research that says if I buy into`those stereotypes as an older adult, then my quality of life is less than if I am able to deflect those stereotypes and live my life as I know well.
I think one of the ways in which we can fight ageism and gain access to the aging population is through inter-generational relationships.
I’m not talking about having the school kids come in and sing to a group of seniors at the senior center. I’m really talking about the co-working together, whether that be in the garden, in an educational situation, in a musical situation. Really within the community. There’s a push now for age-friendly communities. I don’t like that term, to be honest with you. What that means is that, so that older people can get around and feel comfortable in the community. Because, if they’re “age-friendly” communities, then they’re going to be people-friendly communities. When we say that we’re just doing things for one group, then that again begins to stigmatize them. When we really think about how a community can come together, that’s when the generational differences just disappear.

I’m Jim Metzner and this is the Pulse of the Planet.

Rethinking Elder Care - Ageism

A subtle form of discrimination permeates our society.
Air Date:04/17/2017
Scientist:
Transcript:

Elder Care - Ageism

Along with sexism and racism, there is an often subtler form of discrimination permeating our society, ageism. I'm Jim Metzner and this is the Pulse of the Planet.

Roberto: Unfortunately ageism is rampant in our society. We look at older adults and we want to group them all under one umbrella.

Karen Roberto is a university distinguished professor of gerontology at Virginia Tech.

Roberto: We have these stereotypes and images that older adults are sick. Or they're all needy. That becomes very important because there's research that says if I buy into`those stereotypes as an older adult, then my quality of life is less than if I am able to deflect those stereotypes and live my life as I know well.
I think one of the ways in which we can fight ageism and gain access to the aging population is through inter-generational relationships.
I'm not talking about having the school kids come in and sing to a group of seniors at the senior center. I'm really talking about the co-working together, whether that be in the garden, in an educational situation, in a musical situation. Really within the community. There's a push now for age-friendly communities. I don't like that term, to be honest with you. What that means is that, so that older people can get around and feel comfortable in the community. Because, if they're "age-friendly" communities, then they're going to be people-friendly communities. When we say that we're just doing things for one group, then that again begins to stigmatize them. When we really think about how a community can come together, that's when the generational differences just disappear.

I'm Jim Metzner and this is the Pulse of the Planet.