Create social responses to a changing environment

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Communities across the globe, including the United States, face unprecedented environmental challenges influenced by factors such as climate change and an increasing global population. This chapter will focus specifically on natural disasters. While natural disasters have always existed, the current uptick in the frequency of disaster events, growing evidence that disasters negatively affect older adults disproportionally, and larger number of older adults comprising the world’s population than any other age group make it necessary to consider the specific impacts disasters have on the older adult population. Older adults have unique needs during disasters due to vulnerabilities common in late life, as well as social isolation. This chapter details the needs of older adults across the disaster event phases: pre-disaster mitigation and preparedness, during and post-disaster response, and long-term disaster recovery. The chapter concludes with future steps for social work research, policy, and practice.

Publication Title, e.g., Journal

Gerontological Social Work and the Grand Challenges: Focusing on Policy and Practice