Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Classes:  Census Data Reveals Elder Women's Poverty Crisis

The majority of older women in America are unable to cover their basic living expenses, and the percentage of those in distress is 50% higher than that of men, according to a new analysis of U.S. Census Department data conducted by Wider Opportunities for Women, a nonprofit organization based in Washington, D.C., that focuses on women and workforce issues.

Three out of five women over 65 have incomes that won't cover their most basic daily needs, whereas among men it's 40%, says Donna Addkison, president and CEO of the organization. Older women are at much greater risk of economic insecurity than older men.

For many the consequences are serious. We are seeing evidence that older women are making choices that are untenable, Addkison reports. They're very quietly, at home, deciding to choose between having heat in the wintertime or putting nutritious food on the table, or they're choosing between food and the medications they need. They make choices that get them by, but they're very dangerous choices to be making. We're not talking about eating out, or buying birthday presents for grandchildren, or any of those extras. We're talking about shelter, food, clothing, and transportation—the basics we need to survive in this country, let alone thrive.

For more, see Census Data Reveals Elder Women's Poverty Crisis by Leslie Bennetts, March 28, 2012 at The Daily Beast.

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