Ageism is discrimination or prejudice against people based on their age. It can take many forms, including:
- Stereotyping or prejudice against people of a certain age, such as the belief that older people are less intelligent or capable than younger people
- Discrimination in employment, housing, or other areas based on age
- The exclusion of older people from social, cultural, or recreational activities
- The marginalization or devaluation of older people in society
Ageism can have serious consequences for those targeted by it, including loss of opportunities, economic insecurity, and social isolation. It can also contribute to the perpetuation of negative stereotypes and biases about older people, like that they are a “burden” or “less valuable” to society.
Here’s how to dismantle ageism in your community.
Start by reading articles or books that explore the topic in depth. Seek out workshops, seminars, or online courses that cover ageism. As you learn more about the issue, try to have conversations with people who have different perspectives and experiences, and be open to hearing different viewpoints.
Connect with Your Elder Community Members
Make sure that you’re connected to your elder community members, whether it’s your neighbor, older teachers at your school, or more senior workers at your organization. Understand the joys and challenges that they experience in your community.
Consider: What have you been taught about aging? Where did those stereotypes come from? How does your perception of age change as you get older?