Review of Equitable Community-based Aging Policies and Practices
The Joint Center for Housing Studies and The Hastings Center are partnering to explore lessons learned during the pandemic about supporting older adults dwelling in the community. Our COVID RECAPP project will identify housing-focused policies and practices developed by housing providers, advocates, government agencies, and older adults themselves to address a range of needs that arose during or were exacerbated by the pandemic, including loneliness; disruptions in access to food, supportive services, and healthcare; and challenges with housing affordability, safety, and accessibility.
Prior to the pandemic, both the Joint Center for Housing Studies and The Hastings Center published research exploring gaps in the system supporting middle- and lower-income older adults living in the community (what some term “aging in place”), particularly regarding the availability of affordable, accessible housing linked to services, the high cost of in-home supports and pressures on family caregivers, and the need for robust community infrastructure to help people maintain independence as they age. The pandemic has stress-tested a system that was already inadequate to meeting the needs of older adults, making plain shortfalls and deep disparities in access to housing and services.
Social isolation, already a concern for many older people, intensified for many under stay-at-home orders and social distancing policies...