Research has illustrated that the increased size and proportion of our older population has an impact on the family in later life. In the United States, the number of elderly people is projected to exceed 70 million by the year 2030, at which time all of the baby boomers will have reached age 65; older individuals will represent about 20 percent of our population by then—one in every five people you see on the sidewalks and in the grocery store will be 65 or older! Of equal magnitude are the challenges for the global community to plan for their aging societies and to propose and implement culturally relevant solutions to the challenges of health care and economic security. The demographic frame of reference will continually direct our attention to the distinct yet diverse characteristics, situations, and needs of the family in later life; to the aging of our society; and to global aging.
As a human service and public service leader, you have increased your awareness of the abundance and utility of demographic information about the family in later life and aging in the United States and elsewhere. For this discussion, consider the demographic information that might be useful concerning the family in later life for one or more of the following audiences: your chosen profession, your local community, politicians or policy makers, or marketers or product developers. Using one of the sources cited in the assigned chapter readings for this unit and integrating your thoughts from the Intergenerational Timeline, the Riverbend City simulation, and course readings, complete the following:
Find three or four facts about the family in later life that would be useful for the audience(s) you have identified.
Identify the audience(s) and discuss the information and how you would share it.
Discuss the implications of the information for your chosen audience.
Support your position with scholarly and professional research from the current literature.
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