Statements on Racism and Inequity from Healthy Aging Organizations

Jun 3, 2020

The Massachusetts Healthy Aging Collaborative is proud to promote inclusive communities that support all older adults and residents of all ages.

In light of recent and ongoing racial violence as well as the protests taking place across the country and all over Massachusetts, MHAC is sharing and amplifying the following statements from national organizations involved with advocacy and support of diverse older adults.

In addition, MHAC has highlighted excerpts from these statements, but we encourage those reading to view them in their entirety at the links provided.

“To fight racism, we must be explicitly anti-racist. We reaffirm our commitment to do everything individually and collectively that we can to break down these systems of oppression so all of us, at all ages, can have the freedom and justice we deserve as humans.”

“During these horrific times it is easy to let our frustrations, outrage, and anger get the best of us. From the wisdom of our community’s elders, we urge all to stand up for racial equality across generations.  Let’s encourage diverse older Americans to participate in peaceful protest, to engage in advocacy efforts for policy change, and to expand voter registration and voting itself among our communities.”

AARP today continues to be guided by the promise that our founder, Dr. Ethel Percy Andrus, made over 60 years ago: ‘What we do, we do for all.’ 

“Every person should be allowed to age in dignity, fairness and live in a society free of inequality.”

“The very color of one’s skin should not amount to a barrier to aging; but unfortunately, for many in the United States it does!”

“As an organization deeply committed to building the equitable world that our LGBT pioneers have spent many decades fighting for, SAGE cannot stay silent in the face of the onslaught of racist violence against Black people in this country.  We know that these issues run deep and have been part of our social, political, and economic climate in various ways since the beginnings of our country.”

“As refugees and descendants of refugees, as survivors of war and genocide, our communities also know the devastating impacts of police force. It is incumbent on us as Southeast Asian Americans to show up for the Black community. We must acknowledge that our own paths to equity are a direct product of their historic civil rights wins and struggles, that they continue to build, as well as to endure, to this day. We must name the systems that have benefited from having communities of color pitted against one another, and we must boldly resist them.”

“An injustice against one community is an affront to all of our communities. We need to support one another to fight the systemic racism and bigotry that have long robbed marginalized, black, indigenous, and other diverse communities.”