The Age of Dignity: Preparing for the Elder Boom in a Changing America (Hardcover)

The Age of Dignity: Preparing for the Elder Boom in a Changing America Cover Image
Usually Ships in 1-5 Days

About the Author

Ai-jen Poo is the director of the National Domestic Workers Alliance (NDWA) and a co-director of the Caring Across Generations Campaign. In 2000, she co-founded Domestic Workers United. She lives in New York City.
Product Details
ISBN: 9781620970386
ISBN-10: 1620970384
Publisher: New Press
Publication Date: February 3rd, 2015
Pages: 176
Language: English

One of Newsweek’s 150 “fearless women,” the activist who spearheaded New York’s successful Bill of Rights for domestic workers shows how we can better care for our growing elderly population and provide millions of good jobs at the same time

“Ai-jen Poo knows how to create social change from the bottom up . . . showing the humanity of a long devalued kind of work. This goes beyond organizing to transforming.”
—Gloria Steinem in Time


By 2035, 11.5 million Americans will be over the age of eighty-five—more than double today’s 5 million—and living longer than ever before. To enable all of us to age with dignity and security in the face of this coming Age Wave, our society must learn to value the care of our elders. The process of building a culture that supports care is a key component to restoring the American dream, and, as Ai-jen Poo convincingly argues in The Age of Dignity, will generate millions of new jobs and breathe new life into our national ideals of independence, justice, and dignity.

This groundbreaking new book from the director of the National Domestic Workers Alliance offers bold solutions, such as long-term care insurance and cultural change to get all of us to value care, which are already at the heart of a movement transforming what it means to grow old in the United States. At the intersection of our aging population, the fraying safety net, and opportunities for women and immigrants in the workforce, The Age of Dignity maps out an integrated set of solutions to address America’s new demographic and economic realities.


“Ai-jen Poo’s first book shines a new light on the need for a holistic approach to caregiving in America. A timely and hopeful book, The Age of Dignity holds solutions that lift all boats—strengthening our families, the workforce that supports us, and the nation as a whole.”
— Maria Shriver
“Ai-jen Poo’s The Age of Dignity is about solutions. Filled with the stories of the people and relationships that make America great, it offers a unique perspective on our changing nation and the way forward. Don’t miss this book.”
— Van Jones, New York Times bestselling author ofRebuild the Dream
“Ai-jen Poo not only offers us an inspiring vision of a future in which care is valued but also lays out the practical steps to get us there. This book brings us closer to a world based on interdependence, collaboration, and love.”
— Jennifer Buffett, co-president, NoVo Foundation
“Joining a storyteller’s ear to an organizer’s spirit, Ai-jen Poo offers a practical guide to creating a more caring America that is more prosperous and just—for immigrant women hired to care no less than elder boomers in need.”
— Eileen Boris, co-author of Caring for Americaand Hull Professor of Feminist Studies, University of California, Santa Barbara
“Ai-jen understands as well as anyone that the nature of work is changing. She is one of the smartest and most empathetic advocates in America, and The Age of Dignity has the solutions we need to ensure that workers of any age have the independence and dignity they deserve.”
— Sara Horowitz, founder and executive director, Freelancers Union
“People getting older is not a crisis, it’s a blessing. That is the message of The Age of Dignity, an urgent and irresistible book by Ai-jen Poo. To benefit from this blessing of experience that comes with longer life expectancy, we’ll need more well-paid and expert home care workers. In just the next four years, that demand will increase by more than 90 percent. This gives you some idea why every American should read this slender book. With luck, it will be the future for all of us.”
— Gloria Steinem
“A powerful call for a Care Revolution in America—to transform the quality of life of the aging, the infirm, and the sick and to recognize, value, and lift those who so generously take care of them.”
— Eve Ensler, author of The Vagina Monologues
“Everyone who has met Ai-jen Poo has been taken by her compelling combination of head and heart, of clear analysis and soulful compassion. The Age of Dignity captures that mix and is a must-read for anyone concerned about the emerging intersections of family life, labor markets, and public policy.”
— Manuel Pastor, director, Center for the Study of Immigrant Integration (CSII), University of Southern California
“Ai-jen Poo is among our most compelling social movement leaders. In The Age of Dignity, a most thoughtful and readable book, she invites us to join arms and reshape our economy and our culture.”
— Ambassador Swanee Hunt, chair of Hunt Alternatives and Eleanor Roosevelt Lecturer in Public Policy at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government
“Within the next twenty-five years, tens of millions of baby boomers are going to become frail and need long-term services and supports. How will we live? Who will care for us? In The Age of Dignity, Ai-jen Poo presents a bold and inspiring vision for the future—one that can unite caregivers, older adults and their families, advocates, and policy makers to join forces to address the extraordinary care challenge that is clearly coming.”
— Jim Firman, president and CEO, National Council on Aging