As part of our “Women on Wednesdays” series, please join American University’s Women & Politics Institute and AARP for a virtual conversation with Erica Dhar, Director of Global Alliances with AARP’s Office of International Affairs, Julie Miller, Director of Thought Leadership, Financial Resilience at AARP, and The Hill’s National Political Reporter Julia Manchester, as they discuss the impact that older women have on economic growth and the political landscape. WPI Executive Director Betsy Fischer Martin will facilitate the conversation.
“Women on Wednesdays,” sponsored by AARP’s Policy, Research & International, is bringing attention to the growing impact of women over the age of 50 on the global economy. Yet, despite the significant contributions that older women make through paid work, unpaid caregiving, and purchasing power, they continue to face marginalization due to factors such as age and gender discrimination.
The Global Longevity Economy, which refers to the economic impact of individuals aged 50 and over, is projected to reach $118 trillion by 2050. Women are a key demographic in this economy, with 64% of all consumer purchases worldwide made by women. However, the labor force participation rate for women over 55 remains lower than that of men in all countries and income groups since 1990. Women’s responsibilities in childcare, elder care, and other household tasks often lead to interrupted work and early retirement, which has major implications for social protection and retirement security worldwide. Marginalized groups, including women over 50, are particularly affected by layoffs. Women’s lack of access to pensions is also a major issue, with only 26% of women worldwide having a pension and only 40% of women in the US having access to workplace pensions. The event highlights the opportunities and challenges for businesses and governments in the Longevity Economy and advocates for universal non-contributory pensions to contribute to lowering poverty rates and achieving gender equality.
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