Seniors Poverty and Opportunity Profile—Taking Care of Seniors in the Future

From Half in Ten (

Today, 15 percent of American seniors—people ages 65 and older—are living in poverty in the United States, a disproportionate number of whom are women and people of color. By 2050, one-fifth of the total U.S. population will be 65 or older as Baby Boomers age into retirement. As illustrated in the Half in Ten and National Senior Citizen Law Center’s ( Seniors Poverty and Opportunity Profile (, seniors will increasingly struggle with poverty and economic insecurity—including homelessness and hunger—unless we provide proper assistance and support.

This week marks the 79th anniversary of the Social Security Act, which established the foundation for what has become our nation’s bedrock social insurance program. Social Security and other government programs keep millions of seniors out of extreme poverty; in fact without it, more than half of all seniors today would be poor.

Moving forward, we must strengthen Social Security and other government programs such as the Supplemental Security Income, or SSI, program, housing subsidies, hunger assistance, and long-term services and supports. These policy solutions will not only help seniors achieve economic security, but also help millions of adults, children, and people with disabilities, while strengthening our nation’s economy as a whole.

There is a lot of progress to be made in ensuring that American seniors are able to participate in the nation’s economic prosperity.

Download the Seniors Poverty & Opportunity Profile (PDF) to find out more!

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