ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

SENIORS: Older Americans Month observed during May

In honor of the annual Older Americans Month observance during May, Brad Beckman, director of the Aging Resource Center for Douglas County has submitted the following educational article.

In honor of the annual Older Americans Month observance during May, Brad Beckman, director of the Aging Resource Center for Douglas County has submitted the following educational article.

* * *

A meeting with the National Council of Senior Citizens resulted in President John F. Kennedy designating May 1963 as "Senior Citizen Month," asking the nation to pay tribute in some way to older people across the country.

In 1980, President Jimmy Carter's proclamation changed the name to "Older Americans Month," a time to celebrate those age 65 and older through ceremonies, events and fairs.

Following are some current statistics from the U.S. Census Bureau.

ADVERTISEMENT

  • 36.8 million -- The number of people 65 and older in the United States on July 1, 2005. This age group accounted for 12 percent of the total population. Between 2004 and 2005, this age group increased by 457,000 people.
  • 86.7 million -- Projected population of people 65 and older in 2050. People in this age group would comprise 21 percent of the total population at that time.
  • 147 percent -- Projected percentage increase in the 65-and-older population between 2000 and 2050. By comparison, the population as a whole would have increased by only 49 percent over the same period.
  • 495 million -- Current world population 65 and older. Projections indicate the number will increase to 997 million by 2030.
  • 10.1 percent -- Poverty rate for people 65 and older in 2005, statistically unchanged from the previous year. There were 3.6 million seniors in poverty.
  • 5.3 million -- Number of people 65 and older who were in the labor force in 2005. Projections indicate that by 2014, the number will reach 8.7 million.
  • 72 -- The number of men 65 and older on July 1, 2005, for every 100 women in this age group. For those 85 and older, it drops to 46 men per 100 women.
  • 5.1 million -- The number of people 85 and older in the United States on July 1, 2005.
  • 79,682 -- Estimated number of centenarians in the United States on Nov. 1, 2006.
  • 580,605 -- Projected number of centenarians in the United States in 2040.
  • 3.9 million -- Number of people 65 and older living in California on July 1, 2005, the highest total of any state. Florida, with 3 million, was the runner-up.
  • 20 percent -- Projection of the percentage of Florida's population age 65 and older in 2015, which would lead all states. In that year, Florida will have nearly as many residents 65 and older as younger than 18.
What To Read Next