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Aging and Disability Worksheet Essay

Identify 2 or 3 issues faced by the aging population.

1 Older adults experience unequal treatment, discrimination and prejudice in the workplace

2 Not growing old is not an option

3 Health problems

Answer the following questions in 100 to 200 words each. Provide citations for all the sources you use.

What is ageism? How does ageism influence the presence of diversity in society? Ageism is the [prejudice and discrimination against the elderly. Ageism reflects a deep uneasiness among young and middle-aged people about growing old. For many, old age symbolizes disease and death; seeing older adults serves as a reminder that they too may someday become old and infirm. By contrast, society glorifies youth, seeing it as interchangeable with beauty and the future] (Schaefer, 2012). Ageism restricts the acceptance of the elderly by discriminating against them. The elderly are often referred to as “them” when most of us will one day be in that category.

What is the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)? How does the ADA address issues for the aging population? The Americans with Disabilities Act was an anti-discrimination law that started in 1992, covering people with a disability, defined as a condition that “substantially limits” a “major life activity” such as walking or seeing. It prohibits bias in employment, transportation, public accommodations, and telecommunication against people with disabilities. Businesses with more than 15 employees cannot refuse to hire a qualified applicant with a disability; these companies are expected to make a “reasonable accommodation” to permit such a worker to do the job.

Commercial establishments such as office buildings, hotels, theaters, supermarkets, and dry cleaners are barred from denying service to people with disabilities (Schaefer, 2012). One of the ways that the ADA addresses issues for the aging population is that it established requirements for businesses of all sizes (ADA, 2014).

What is being done to address the issues you identified?

[Many older adults with diminished heart and lung functions and reduced mobility will have placards or license plates for accessible parking. When parking is near the main door of the facility, these patrons have strength left after entering your business to shop, enjoy entertainment, or eat heartily. Clear, wide paths without stairs to the establishment’s entrance and throughout the business leave room for canes and walkers and accommodate people with reduced mobility and stamina.

Minimum-weight doors with accessible hardware are easily opened by people who have arthritis or use a cane for extra balance. For heavier doors, automatic and power-assisted openers are helpful to everyone. Entrances and aisles with adequate head clearance and minimal projections into the path of travel result in easier navigation for people with lessened visual acuity or those who may be disoriented by clutter] (ADA, 2014)

Is the number of aging population expected to rise in numbers or decrease? [The growth of the elderly population is projected to be over twenty one percent (21%) by 2050. An increasing proportion of the population will be composed of older people. This trend is expected to continue well through the twenty-first century as mortality declines and the postwar baby boomers age. Looking over a period of a century, we see the proportion over age 65 increases from less than one in 10 in 1960 to almost one in four by 2050] (Schaefer, 2012).

What types of legislation may or may not be affected by the aging population? There are many issues facing the elderly today any many could involve legislation affecting things as Social Security and Medicare healthcare benefits. The development and workings of groups aimed at protecting not only the threatened benefits of Social Security, Medicare, and other healthcare, but also other considerations for the elderly lifestyle are on the rise and proving to be helpful to our aging society as our Baby Boomers approach retirement age.

How does poverty affect the aging population?

Poverty among the elderly is seen as much less today as it was in the past. This can be attributed to pension plans and higher paying jobs that the people worked at. Although the rate of poverty is declining in the elderly, poverty is still an issue. One major cause is the rising cost of long term healthcare and medicines. With the increased life expectancy rates, this only compounds the problem as people are living longer.

Part II

Answer the following questions in 100 to 200 words each. Provide citations for all the sources you use. What does the ADA provide for people with disabilities?

The ADA prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability in employment, State and local government, public accommodations, commercial facilities, transportation, and telecommunications. It also applies to the United States Congress. To be protected by the ADA, one must have a disability or have a relationship or association with an individual with a disability. An individual with a disability is defined by the ADA as a person who has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, a person who has a history or record of such an impairment, or a person who is perceived by others as having such an impairment. The ADA does not specifically name all of the impairments that are covered (US Department of Justice, April 9, 2012). How have people with disabilities been treated in the past?

Lukoff and Cohen (1972) note that some communities banished or Ill-treated the blind while others accorded them special privileges. In a comparison of the status of persons with disabilities in a number of non-occidental societies, Hanks and Hanks (1948) found wide differences. Persons with disabilities were completely rejected by some cultures, in others they were outcasts, while in some they were treated as economic liabilities and grudgingly kept alive by their families.

In other settings, persons with disabilities were tolerated and treated in incidental ways, while in other cultures they were given respected status and allowed to participate to the fullest extent of their capability (Disability Studies Quarterly, 2014).

How has the attitude toward people with disabilities changed over time? A Lou Harris poll conducted in 1991 was revealing and positive. For example, 98% of individuals questioned believe that all people, regardless of one’s ability, should have an opportunity to participate in mainstream society. Furthermore, there was a strong sentiment toward increased employment of persons with disabilities; 92% polled believed that employment of persons with disabilities would be economically beneficial to society. There is a strong trend toward acceptance. These attitudes are in sharp contrast to the prevailing attitudes of the first half of this century. (University of Florida College of Dentistry, 2014)

What are some unique circumstances or issues encountered by people with disabilities? There are numerous circumstances or issues encountered by people with disabilities daily. The task of accomplishing simple tasks can sometimes seem insurmountable. Those with physical disabilities must often times depend on the help of others to get along daily, let alone pursue a meaningful life. Public transportation can be difficult; sidewalks are not always wheelchair friendly, doorways are sometimes not wide enough, print can be too small to read on menus.

What is being done to address those issues?

Businesses that serve the public must modify policies and practices that discriminate against people with disabilities; comply with accessible design standards when constructing or altering facilities; remove barriers in existing facilities where readily achievable; and provide auxiliary aids and services when needed to ensure effective communication with people who have hearing, vision, or speech impairments. All businesses, even those that do not serve the public, must comply with accessible design standards when constructing or altering facilities (ADA, 2014)

What types of legislation have been introduced to address issues faced by people with disabilities? Following the original Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA), including changes made by the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 (P.L. 110-325), which became effective on January 1, 2009. The ADA was originally enacted in public law format and later rearranged and published in the United States Code. The United States Code is divided into titles and chapters that classify laws according to their subject matter. Titles I, II, III, and V of the original law are codified in Title 42, chapter 126, of the United States Code beginning at section 12101. Title IV of the original law is codified in Title 47, chapter 5, of the United States Code. (ADA.gov, 2008)

References
ADA. (2014). ADA Business Connection. Retrieved from http://www.ada.gov/business.htm ADA.gov. (2008). Americans With Disablities Act of 1990 As Amended. Retrieved from http://www.ada.gov/pubs/adastatute08.pdf Disability Studies Quarterly. (2014). Past and Present Perceptions Towards Disability: A Historical Perspective. Retrieved from http://www.sds.org/article/view/3197/3068 Schaefer, R. T. (2012). Racial and Ethnic Groups (13th ed.). Bergen County, NJ: Merrill Prentice Hall. US Department of Justice. (April 9,2012). A Guide To Disability Rights Laws. Retrieved from http://www.ada.gov/cguide.htm University of Florida College of Dentristy. (2014). Societys Attitude Towards People with Disabilities. Retrieved from http://paul-burtner.dental.ufl.edu/oral-health-care-for-persons-with-disabilities/societys-attitude-towards-people-with-disabilities/


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