2002 Joint Conference of the National Council on the Aging and the American Society on Aging (2002 NCOA-ASA Joint)
Venue: Denver Adam\'s Mark
|Event Date/Time: Apr 04, 2002||End Date/Time: Apr 07, 2002|
|Registration Date: Mar 25, 2002|
|Early Registration Date: Feb 11, 2002|
|Abstract Submission Date: May 24, 2001|
|Paper Submission Date: May 24, 2001|
This year, we take our theme from our locale because aging in America today is marked by great divides: the divide between heights of affluence and depths of poverty; between resource-rich cities and suburbs and resource-poor rural areas; between poorly paid caregivers -- often foreign-born or ethnic minority women -- and the predominantly white older people receiving their care; between those who espouse different beliefs on the role of government versus individual responsibility for providing for elders in our society; between the generations; and between the promise of biotechnology-driven life extension and the reality that old age is still a time of dependency, frailty and uncertainty. How will we cross these great divides to build a society where all of our later years are as vital as they can be?
At the dawn of a new administration that has called for "compassionate conservatism" in social policies, the caring professions are facing unprecedented challenges. Despite talk of a compassionate society, the jobs -- both nonprofessional and professional, whether direct frontline workers or administrative staff -- that are needed in ever-increasing numbers to care for a growing elderly population are not attracting the young. Long-term care is in an acute labor crisis. Community services and faith-based and voluntary organizations, with fewer funds available to them, are asked to carry a greater share of the burden of care, as are families. And federal programs to ensure equality and social justice in late life -- Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid -- are stuck in a quagmire of seemingly endless debate, at the very moment that creative solutions are most needed.
Overcoming the problems that divide us will indeed take compassion. How do we infuse our youth - and affluence - oriented society with real compassion for the old? How will we change the attitudes and beliefs that color our culture's images of aging -- to see old age as a time of strength and wisdom rather than simply a time of decline and loss? How do we tap our creativity to find new solutions to lingering problems through new partnerships, practices and policies? Where will we find the resources?
In April 2002, The National Council on the Aging and the American Society on Aging will convene their Second Joint Conference. The 2002 Joint Conference will be filled with the hundreds of informational, resource-sharing and networking sessions that have been the hallmark of our conferences -- and we encourage submissions that highlight new and innovative programs and research, as well as tested best practices. However, the 2002 gathering will have a new dimension: the development of an action agenda. We call for sessions in every subject area that will produce concrete recommendations -- for programs that we can implement in our communities, for policies for which we can advocate in the halls of state and federal government, and for ideas that will give direction to our movement.