Campaign will feature real older New Yorkers who defy stereotypes and challenge residents to rethink views on aging.
NEW YORK (March 22, 2021) – Today, the New York City Department for the Aging launched an anti-ageism campaign titled Ageless New York, which features older New Yorkers who defy ageist stereotypes and challenge City residents to rethink their views on aging. The campaign kicked off today, with an PSA ad unveiling in the East Village section of Manhattan.
The Ageless New York media campaign consists of a visual and video PSA and a website, nyc.gov/AgelessNewYork, where New Yorkers can learn more about ageism and how to limit it in their lives and communities. The campaign PSAs will run and air on Curb taxi monitors, NYC TV, LinkNYC boards, online digital ads, and bus shelters across the five boroughs. The goal of this campaign is for New Yorkers to question and rethink their views on aging and raise public awareness about ageism.
While aging is a natural part of life that affects all of us, there are many prejudices against people because of their age. Like racism and sexism, ageism carries negative stereotypes and can lead to discrimination. Ageism can take many forms, including prejudicial attitudes, discriminatory practices, or institutional policies and practices that harm older adults. Ageism affects not only individuals, it also affects the workplace, our economy, and our communities.
The real New Yorkers featured in the campaign are not defined by their age, but instead by their passions, work, goals and aspirations. The campaign's goal is for New Yorkers to question their own views on ageism and reframe their views on aging — learn to see the individual first and not the age.
"Ageism is insidious and pervasive in our culture and in media – from jokes that make fun of older people to portrayals in film of older people being forgetful and strange. It's so common that many think of it has harmless. But it is far from it," said Department for the Aging Commissioner Lorraine Cortés-Vázquez. "Ageism has negative impacts in the workplace, our economy and on older people's health. It harms individuals, families and our communities and it must be stopped. We invite everyone to join this campaign and reset their views on aging."
The real New Yorkers in the campaign include a marathon runner, a business owner, a social worker, a musician, and a nonprofit CEO who started his organization after retirement. In addition to the visual and video PSAs, the campaign includes a website, nyc.gov/AgelessNewYork, where residents can learn more about ageism, its effects and how to become involved in combatting ageism.
"Our City's greatest strengths come from our inclusivity – and ageism has no place here," said Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services Melanie Hartzog. "We thank DFTA for their leadership on this vital issue and remain committed to uplifting older New Yorkers, so that they can continue to access opportunity and make our City stronger through their contributions."
"Aging is natural, but discrimination is not," said Health Commissioner Dr. Dave A Chokshi. "Stigma and discrimination are also deadly, and we must challenge the stereotypes that can harm older New Yorkers. Hats off to Department for the Aging for taking on this critical issue."
"New Yorkers 50 and older account for nearly a third of the City's population and are a driving force in New York's economy, culture, and civic engagement," said AARP New York State Director Beth Finkel. "Unfortunately, they continue to face rampant discrimination at work and in society. We applaud the Department for the Aging for tackling the challenges of ageism in its new campaign and leading the fight for an age-friendly New York City."
"Our older adult population is a diverse population, and I thank the Department for the Aging for highlighting this with their "Ageless New York" media campaign. Older adults are dismissed and overlooked in many ways, but the reality is our older New Yorkers have so much to offer, whether it be in the workforce, arts and culture, business and finance, etc. The exciting events and experiences our City has to offer are not just for young people; our older adults are active members of the community and the way we talk about aging needs to reflect this," said Council Member Margaret Chin.
"I applaud the City recognizing the pervasive problem of ageism in our city. I have worked for most of my career to protect the rights of vulnerable seniors and shining a light on their struggles will certainly empower them and their advocates in seeking justice in their lives," said Council Member Paul Vallone.
"I applaud the Department for The Aging for launching “Ageless New York," a first-of-its-kind media campaign to address the seriousness of ageism and defying the stereotypes associated with aging," said Council Member Diana Ayala. "The social and emotional harm ageism has on our older adults can be detrimental to the individual and their families potentially causing social isolation, a distressing practice we must put an end to. I want to thank Commissioner Lorraine Cortés-Vázquez for challenging how we rethink our views on aging and highlighting this important issue."