Survey Shows American Women Still Face Unfair Retirement Issues

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Statistics show that a lot of older Americans aren't ready for retirement, and that's especially true of women.

Anna Marie Chavez at the National Council on Aging says the ongoing pay gap, with women still making less for the same work, aggravates the problem.

According to the NCOA study, fifty-six percent of Americans age 60 and older are concerned that health care costs will outpace their retirement savings, and 43% think the same of prescription drug costs.

Fifty-nine percent of women age 60 and older are worried about losing their independence, whereas this is true for 54% of Americans overall. Additionally, 46% of Americans in this age group are worried about being a burden to their families. Among women, 52% share this fear, whereas only 40% of men share this fear.

“Results underscore the reality of an uneven playing field for women in the American economy and the economic opportunity cost after years as mothers and caregivers and not wage-earners. However, the ever-rising cost of health care and prescription drugs are a real and imminent threat to a safe, secure, and dignified retirement for aging adults across the country regardless of gender,” says Anna Maria Chavez, NCOA executive vice president and chief growth officer.

“After careers of earning less than their male counterparts, women are more likely to face financial insecurity, and this survey shows widespread concern among women, far more than men,” she says.

She's urging older people to call on Congress to let Medicare negotiate for lower drug prices and force an end to the pay gap.

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