LOS ANGELES—The City of Los Angeles is committing to a future where the needs of older adults are more carefully considered in the building of infrastructure, the planning of programs, and the making of policy, thanks to an Executive Directive signed today by Mayor Eric Garcetti.
Purposeful Aging LA, the seventeenth Executive Directive of Mayor Garcetti’s administration, requires City departments to thoroughly assess the needs of older adults, and directs them to engage seniors in developing strategies that will ensure a safer and more prosperous, livable, and well-run city for Angelenos of all ages.
"Everyone in our dynamic and diverse city contributes to making Los Angeles an incredible place to live, work, and raise a family," said Mayor Garcetti. "That’s why today, we commit ourselves to better understanding and meeting the needs of older Angelenos — a growing population that deserves our attention and respect. I have directed our Departments to explicitly consider older Angelenos as they develop their policies and programs. That means we are now increasingly factoring in impaired physical mobility and diminished sensory awareness, as well as accounting for economic limitations. The City of Los Angeles stands united, as we work to create an environment where people of all ages can thrive."
L.A.’s older adult population is expected to grow dramatically in the coming years. In Los Angeles County, the number of adults 65 and older is expected to nearly double to more than 2.1 million by 2030. There are about a half-million residents age 60 and older in the City of Los Angeles — a number that is expected to increase by 50% over the next two decades.
The Executive Directive also creates a Purposeful Aging Task Force — comprised of liaisons from 14 City departments, and co-chaired by the Mayor’s Office — to coordinate departmental resources in an effort to make L.A. the world’s most age-friendly city. It is tasked with developing a strategic plan to adjust public infrastructure and services to more closely match the needs of older adults.
Mayor Garcetti’s Executive Directive is part of the larger Purposeful Aging LA Initiative — a joint City/County effort that unites public and private leadership, resources, ideas, and strategies to better serve older adults in the region. As part of the initiative, Los Angeles will join the AARP Network of Age-Friendly Communities and the World Health Organization (WHO) Global Network of Age-Friendly Cities and Communities.
“I am very pleased that the County of Los Angeles is joining with the City of Los Angeles and leading institutions to launch Purposeful Aging Los Angeles,” said Supervisor Hilda Solis, Chair of the County of Los Angeles Board of Supervisors. “This landmark initiative will unite public and private leadership from across the County to ensure a better future for older adults and Angelenos of all ages. With an older adult population that is rapidly growing, we must prepare our communities for the future of aging in Los Angeles County. As we make our county more age-friendly, we are expanding our shared commitment to the older adults who contribute so much to our communities.”
The Network of Age-Friendly Communities will provide guidelines for the Los Angeles region to evaluate and improve on current policies, programs, and infrastructure across eight measures: outdoor spaces and buildings, transportation, housing, social participation, respect and social inclusion, civic participation and employment, communication and information, and community support and health services.
“A large majority of older adults wish to remain in their homes and communities as they age," said Councilmember David Ryu. "It is imperative that the City of Los Angeles continues to enact transportation, housing, civic participation, employment and emergency preparedness policies that will support residents during the aging process. Today’s announcement will ultimately provide greater access to care, services, and support which will enable older adults to continue to live in the places they call home."
Purposeful Aging LA Partners:
City of Los Angeles Department of Aging
County of Los Angeles Community and Senior Services
The Milken Institute Center for the Future of Aging
The USC Leonard Davis School of Gerontology
The UCLA Los Angeles Community Academic Partnership for Research in Aging