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Aging In Arkansas: Why Homelessness Among Older Adults Is Increasing

By 2050, 95,000 older adults, especially those aged 50 to 65, are expected to be living without stable housing, 2 times the present rate.

Those chronically homeless are aging and there are more first time older homeless. These new older homeless have aged at a time of stagnate wages, fewer fixed pension plans as well as higher rents with fewer housing choices.

Older adults who lost jobs in the recession have also had a harder time than those younger. Those on fixed incomes have had the hardest time.

Homeless adults 50 and over:

• Have mortality rates 4 times higher than the general population with a life span of 64 years.

• Age prematurely, 10 to 20 years beyond their chronological age.

• Visit the ER more often than younger homeless.

• Often congregate in cities, like Little Rock, or larger where they hope for more services.

Nagourney, A. Old and Graying on the Streets. New York Times (2016)

Simmons School of Social Work (2016). Aging on the Streets: America’s Growing Older Homeless Population.

This post originally aired on KUAR in February 2018.