‘Dementia Friends’ Initiative Creates Respectful Communities for People of All Ages

In 2016, an estimated 5.4 million Americans had Alzheimer’s disease, the most common form of dementia. And while people of all ages can have dementia, 8.8 percent of adults age 65 and over have the disease. With greater longevity and rapidly increasing numbers of individuals with dementia, we are all likely to encounter a person living with dementia as we go about our lives. We may witness a person living with the disease facing any number of challenges in navigating …

New Survey Shows That America’s Mayors and AARP Know What’s Important

I spent time a few weeks ago with hundreds of our nation’s mayors at the U.S. Conference of Mayors’ 85th Annual Winter Meeting. In addition to listening to leaders like New York Mayor Bill de Blasio, Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) and Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx (during his final hours in that position) talk about the state of our cities, I shared the results of a survey AARP and the U.S. Conference of Mayors conducted last year. In the survey, …

Redefining Home to Address the Future of Housing

by Rodney Harrell with Shannon Guzman and Dan Soliman   In 1961, AARP’s founder, Ethel Andrus, presented President Dwight Eisenhower with Freedom House. The scale model of a uniquely designed home contained what we would now call universal design features that allow people to stay in their homes as they age. Fifty-seven years later, we continue to implement that vision. This morning in Memphis, Walter Moody, a veteran who has faced a range of life challenges including housing instability, is …

Inviting All Planners: Cross-Sector Summit to Create Livable Communities for All Ages

The aging-in-community of a rapidly aging population demands a fundamental shift in planning in order to minimize the economic, social and health challenges that will otherwise overwhelm communities. Nearly 90 percent of Americans 65 and older tell us that they want to age in their homes or communities. And two-thirds of the 85-plus population — the fastest-growing demographic in the U.S. — has at least one disability. We must create communities that are livable across the life span and spectrum …

Communities See Rising Livability Index Scores With Policy Adoption

By Jana Lynott & Shannon Guzman, AARP Public Policy Institute Communities across the country are taking steps to become more livable, and AARP is tracking their progress. Today the AARP Public Policy Institute (PPI) posted new data to its Livability Index based on an update of 19 of the index’s 20 policies.[1] A powerful free tool that anyone can access at www.aarp.org/livabilityindex, the Livability Index scores neighborhoods and communities across the U.S. for the services and amenities that affect people’s …

Home Sharing: A Win-Win for the 50+

AARP recently conducted a survey to find out where people want to live when they retire. You may think a warm-weather climate topped the list, but the No. 1 place was right where they are now. More than two-third of respondents — 69 percent — said they want to stay in their homes and the communities where they currently live. Staying put has a lot of benefits — you’ll be near your friends and the social activities that you’re used …