May is Older Americans Month: Poverty in Later Life

The inability to meet basic needs among older adults is hidden and rarely acknowledged even though a significant number of older adults in Rochester are living in poverty. They are residents who struggle to survive in their 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s. Older Americans Month provides an opportunity, not to pit old against young, but to cast light on poverty across the lifespan.

This map shows, by census tract, the percent of older Rochester-area residents living below the poverty level.

Among Rochester city residents 65 and older living below the poverty level, 39% are Hispanic/Latino, and 20% are Black. In contrast, only 11% of the city’s White (not Hispanic/Latino) residents 65 and older live below poverty level.

One local organization helping older adults cope with financial challenges is Lifespan of Greater Rochester. They note that, after declining for several decades, the city’s population of older adults is increasing, as is the number of older adults living in poverty.

A regional nonprofit providing information, guidance and more than 30 services for older adults and caregivers, Lifespan of Greater Rochester offers financial services to help older adults with bill paying, budgeting and applying for benefits.

Find more information about Lifespan at or 585-244-8400. 

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