Diversity & Inclusion in Senior Living Communities

Are your ads and marketing materials representative of your resident and caregiver population? Are they representative of society? According to an article in Seniors Housing Business, baby boomers entering senior living communities are more diverse than ever, but populations in these communities don’t reflect this reality. 

They surveyed 1,691 people approximately split across Caucasians, Asians, African Americans and Hispanics. The questions focused specifically on continuing care retirement communities, referred to as life plan communities in the survey. Findings included:

  • Hispanics were most likely to say they would consider a move to a life plan community or CCRC.
  • African Americans were most likely to say they would stay in their own home with help from family.
  • Asians, despite higher average median incomes, were less likely to say they would feel welcome in a life plan community.
A second part of the study revealed that less than 50% of senior living management personnel felt that the racial and ethnic distribution of their community mirrored that of the surrounding area. And, while residents are typically non-diverse (95 percent Caucasian), community leaders reported that their staffs are more diverse, with 51% Caucasian, 25% African American, 17% Hispanic and the remainder Asian and other races. 
The report suggests that barriers to community diversity come from a lack of diversity among leadership, as well as a community’s tendency to appear exclusive based on its religious or ethnic affiliations. 
Be aware of the face of the brand you’re distributing to your market, because the future of senior living is diverse.