How can we begin to address the social and cultural biases against older generations? I recognize the problem in the media for sure, but also in my workplace and in everyday life.
— Ben C.
Addressing the social and cultural biases against older generations firstly involves education, awareness, and advocacy. This is the work of people like myself in the aging & longevity space and its various ecosystems.
We aim to increase awareness of the negative impact of ageism and age-based stereotypes. Even the slightest bits of ageism—like children dressing up as “old” for Halloween—all add up to the larger real-life issues our older generations face.
One way you can begin to actively combat ageism in your everyday life is to challenge age-based biases when they occur. Speak up when you hear ageist comments or jokes, comment on news articles that promote these stereotypes or biases, and begin to advocate for policies and practices that work to combat ageism across all generations.
In the workplace, emphasis the need for diversity and inclusivity, including age diversity. Work to create a workplace culture that values and respects the contributions of all employees.
The problems of ageism, and really any issue we face as a society, will require intergenerational relationships and dialogue. Let’s foster understanding and respect between people across all generations. We can accomplish this through community programs, social events, and mentoring programs that bring people of different ages together.
How are you working to actively combat ageism in your community? What can you do to foster intergenerational relationships in your home, workplace, and community?