Prior reports have revealed that the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in many older adults retiring early. A Spectrum News article has that number specifically at 3 million people who entered retirement, and supplemental interview studies found that much of that was because of fear of the virus and work-life balance desires. However, the article also reports a new emerging trend: that more and more older adults are looking to return to the workforce, or “un-retire.”
Older adults have been home for quite some time since the height of the pandemic, and in their spare time, may be rethinking their exit from the job market. The impact of unusually high inflation may also be affecting these retirees.
One resource that can help with this transition is the Senior Community Service Employment Program, which is largely funded by the US Labor Department. This is a work- and community service-based job training program that helps low-income older adults gain any skills they need to find and keep jobs. Specifically, participants can learn how to improve their resumes and their technological skills. Eligible older adults can even be matched with part-time assignments within a range of nonprofit organizations. In return, the employers fill staffing gaps, which is a growing concern for them.
The Senior Community Service Employment Program is not new; as of today, the program helps 50,000 people each year, with demand growing in 2022. We may not know if the trend is being fueled by older adults’ desires to stay occupied, or covering the cost of rising bills, but surely a program like this will go a long way in helping the older adults that need it most.
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Cappabianca, C. (2022). Program Teaches Low-Income, Older Adults Crucial Employment Skills. Spectrum News. https://www.ny1.com/nyc/all-boroughs/news/2022/11/28/national-council-on-aging-says-more-people-seeking-to–unretire–