Once again, two of the 2018 Gray Panthers interns provided us with some insight into their experience and growth. Brynn April and Rachella Ferst both embody our tag line - Age and Youth in Action, as well as our Vision Statement:
The Gray Panthers envisions a world where the old and the young
have much to contribute to make our society more just and humane, and in whicheach reinforces the other in goals, strategy, and action.
Once again, Gray Panthers is in the news. Check out this informative interview:
Upon becoming a member of Gray Panthers, community members nation wide join a fifty year old tradition of standing up for the right of all people not to be subjected to discrimination because of their age. In 2016, the Gray Panthers won the 2016 Annual Maggie Kuhn Award presented at the Yale Club by Presbyterian Social Services. The spirit of Maggie Kuhn [Founder of Gray Panthers], continues to speak through the organization’s progress in ageism advocacy and organizing fifty year later. FLOBEL Advisor and Gray Panthers President Jack Kupferman, envisions a world where the old and the young have much to contribute to make our society more just and humane. The Gray Panthers set up shop anywhere from the streets of New York in protest to the meeting rooms of the United Nations enacting action and advocacy against ageism. Nectar News sat down with Jack Kupferman to learn more about the organization’s motto; “what is good for older people is good for everyone”.
Read Interview here: http://nectarnews.org/2018/08/gray-panthers-a-movement-based-on-a-struggle-against-ageism/
Gray Panthers supports all efforts to confront and eradicate ageism. Who among us will be part of this important first effort in NYC? Please let us know that you will attend.
Jack Kupferman, President
Gray Panthers NYC
917 535 0457
DEAR AGE JUSTICE ALLIES,
WE HOPE YOU WILL COPY AND SEND THIS EMAIL TO ALL OF YOUR MEMBERS, ASSOCIATES AND PERSONAL CONTACTS WHO LIVE IN THE 5 BOROUGHS. WE HAVE BEEN WORKING WITH COUNCILMEMBER CHIN'S OFFICE TO MAKE THIS HAPPEN. LET'S SHOW THEM THAT THE RADICAL AGE MOVEMENT IS A MAJOR PLAYER ON ISSUES OF CONCERN TO OLDER ADULTS.
This coming Monday, September 17th at 1:00 pm, the New York City Council will hold a hearing at City Hall on age discrimination. At this hearing the Committee on Aging and the Committee on Civil and Human Rights will hear testimony from TheRadicalAgeMovement and other organizations, and the public on age discrimination and potential solutions to this problem.
We would like to fill the hearing room with RAM members in blue shirts to show the City Council that this is an important issue that needs the attention of the City Council. In addition, if you would like to testify and share your personal experience, we can assist you to sign up at the hearing. While optional, it is important that the City Council hears from real people that have encountered a form of age discrimination in the workforce.
We will meet at 12:45 pm at the gate to City Hall across the street from 250 Broadway to hand out t-shirts. The hearing is scheduled to begin at 1:00 pm. RAM staff will meet you outside the Broadway entrance to City Hall Plaza. The hearing will conclude around 2:30 pm.
Looking for a big turnout for this historic hearing on a critical issue.
Alice, Steve & Bobbie
Alice Fisher, President & Founder
This Chair Rocks: A Manifesto Against Ageism
is the Official Manifesto
Each year, State Senator Liz Krueger sponsors a hugely popular Senior Resource Fair with dozens of exciting exhibitors. This year’s event takes place on Thursday, October 18, 2018, 2 – 5 PM. https://www.lizkrueger.com/event/senator-kruegers-annual-senior-fair/ Location – One East 65 Street, Temple Emanu-el.
Please RSVP on the link attached to ensure that the Gray Panthers table is fully staffed. It’s an outstanding opportunity to share, to learn, and to appreciate how Gray Panthers contributes to the many activist and social service networks of this great city. Please indicate the time frame you will be available to help.
Looking forward to seeing you on October 18, 2018. RSVP here
Gray Panthers in print! Check out the current issue of Good Trouble Magazine. Gray Panthers and Jack Kupferman are featured for their activism and advocacy against ageism. Alongside other actiivists, this issue makes for a powerful collective portrait of the energy and work happening in this city at the moment. (The article is on the lower left hand side and you'll need to use your Zoom feature to read it.)
Once upon a time, a 40 year old divorcee thought her life was over. And then she heard 72 year old Maggie Kuhn speak. Watch this short, charming interview to learn how Gray Panthers inspired Jan Hively to create an exciting new life of enduring friendship, meaning — and sex!
Watch video here...
August 9, 2018
I am writing this letter to let you all know that, as Jack Kupferman has hoped, interning for the Gray Panthers this summer has totally blown my mind.
This past summer, I was fortunate to work with a passionate, “scrappy,” and sincere organization dedicated to combatting ageism locally, nationally, and globally. During my internship search, I did not see many jobs that particularly stood out to me, but Gray Panthers did. Their emphasis on youth and age in action made me consider a perspective that I had not delved into much before, and their mission to dismantle ageism was particularly enticing.
Candidly, I did not discuss ageism in many other spaces before this experience, and I truly regret not having done so before. Age is something that we all have in common, something that is inevitable. Therefore, it is very strange that so many of us—knowingly or unknowingly— perpetuate this stigma, which will eventually be a stigma against ourselves.
This internship was much more than going on coffee runs. I worked directly on a number of projects with collaborators at Yale School of Public Health, the Center for Medicare Advocacy, and the Riverstone Center to name a few. Some of the projects that I worked on include the reformatting and editing of a document on healthcare for older adults—to be used by policy makers and organizations, the fundamentals of an intergenerational education project on Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid; the beginnings of an Innovation Lab targeted at innovation for older adults in the world’s developing countries; and a website for Ageism resources. I interviewed individuals like Helen Hamlin, a renowned social worker and advocate, as well as a phenomenal person. Meeting people like Ms. Hamlin show the true nature of advocacy and how fundamental the individual is, and also how dedicated these individuals are.
On top of all of these incredible projects, I also had the privilege to attend the High Level Political Forum as well as the Open Ended Working Group on Ageing at the United Nations—attending sessions, writing policy briefs, and setting up events. It was an amazing experience after working at a grassroots and national level to see how policy and advocacy can also work at the global level. This experience gave me insight that I would have otherwise not had before working with Gray Panthers, and I am honored to have been able to be a part of this process. The various events gave me a clear understanding of why there is a necessity for a global Convention (treaty) negotiated at the UN targeted at protecting the human rights of older persons.
I sincerely appreciate the opportunity Jack Kupferman gave me to work with Gray Panthers over the summer. Jack was not only an incredible boss, but also a supportive, kind, and driven individual who I admire and respect. His devotion to Gray Panthers is unparalleled and his commitment to the organization taught me a lot about the importance of having unfettered dedication to a cause. It was such a great opportunity to meet a one of a kind leader like Jack.
Thank you again for this unique opportunity.
Gray Panthers Intern 2018
Gray Panthers is at it again! As part of our efforts to combat ageism, and to ensure that the rights of older persons are heard, Gray Panthers organized and held an important forum at United Nations Headquarters in New York on how to ensure that domestic and global regulation of nursing home facilities is properly structured, administered, and responsive to the needs of all nursing home residents.
The focus of this year's Open Ended Working Group on Ageing had been on Long Term Care and Palliative Care.
Our event was attended by diplomats, government ministry officials from around the world, delegates from NGOs, and advocates. We're proud that the event was held during the first day of the OEWGA. We're proud that all presentations provided a variety of perspectives on why civil society must always be the watchdog regarding nursing home regulation.
This is a huge issue, both in the USA and globally, and particularly important for nations where long term care systems are emerging.
Attached is a summary of the event. We hope it spurs further action - here and throughout the world. Please let us know if you can identify other distribution channels to disseminate it widely.
‘Stakeholder Engagement in the HLPF and its Review in 2019’
Once again, Gray Panthers made a huge contribution to this year’s High Level Political Forum (the essential global forum for review of the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals). In prior email blasts, we’ve informed you of the groundbreaking statement by Sylvia Beales, providing a practical and strategic underpinning of the concept of “Leave No One Behind”. While our emphasis is on ensuring that the voice of older persons is not made silent, there is much to be done. As a member of the Stakeholder Group on Ageing and on its own, Gray Panthers made important statements, participated in innumerable events, spoke up, and showed the world that older persons are always essential to the progress of the world. The fabulous Gray Panthers summer interns helped immeasurably.
Attached find a summary of an important event at the HLPF highlighting the need for continued and expanded voice of civil society in this critically important forum. There is a threat that the voice of the people will be scaled back. Gray Panthers fights back. Frances Zainoeddin, along with Jack Kupferman, Sylvia Beales and others, is helping to lead the way.
Please review summary prepared by our interns. Comments appreciated.
Jack Kupferman, President
Gray Panthers NYC
The Gray Panthers thank you for your support in the past. Because of people like you, the Gray Panthers have been very successful in the past year or so. We have continued to work with the International Stakeholders Group on Ageing and the NGO Committee on Ageing and we have been active in the Rise and Resist Movement’s efforts to preserve human rights for all. We proudly participated in support of the March for Our Lives, and we have been active in efforts to improve working conditions for caregivers.
The Gray Panthers are eager to expand our activities and are establishing a formal board of directors, elected annually by the membership. We will need the help of all of our friends to put the organization on this firm structure and we would be very pleased if you would join us as a paid member. Dues for September 2018 through August 2019 are $25; these will be renewable on an annual basis in the future.
Where will your dues go? They will go towards working with various organizations to improve the working conditions of paid caregivers; working with New York State to continue improving nursing homes after the nursing home audit; helping us employ a part-time consultant; and helping to save Medicare, Social Security, and Medicaid. We currently do these things on a volunteer basis, but realistically, organizing, publicizing, and administering these activities takes money.
Your support will enable the Gray Panthers to work more effectively on these projects. We have done a great deal with very little, however, it is now time to ensure that we have enough financial support to accomplish our goals.
Please join us. As a paid member you will take part in the annual election of the board of directors and will be welcome to take part, at either reduced or no cost, in all our events in the coming year.
Please use the attached form to support join Gray Panthers by becoming a paid member. You can also use the webpage, here. We thank you for your membership.
We are so proud. One of our fabulous summer interns, Erica Sanders, delivered a short and powerful statement to delegates and advocates at the 2018 Open Ended Working Group on Ageing at United Nations Headquarters. It is important for the world to see that both younger and older generations are troubled by the lack of protections for the human rights of older persons. Attached you’ll find a copy of the statement developed and delivered by the Gray Panthers interns as well as a video clip of Erica’s effective delivery. “Age and Youth in Action”.
Click on video image, above, to play clip in web browser.
Today, August 3, 2018, the New York Times celebrates the birth of Maggie Kuhn, founder of Gray Panthers. Appropriately so. The passion, effectiveness and advocacy of Maggie Kuhn’s life is needed today. Gray Panthers confronts ageism and confronts the wrong-headed developments in the world. Today, we face the onslaught of hatred, lack of compassion, and the destruction of all that is good in the USA. Gray Panthers fights back. And, we should follow the example of Maggie Kuhn –
“Power should not be concentrated in the hands of so few, and powerlessness in the hands of so many.” Maggie Kuhn
NY Times Back Story
Scott Stewart/Associated Press
If anyone could prove that age is nothing but a number, it was Maggie Kuhn.
The activist and founder of the Gray Panthers, an American advocacy organization for the elderly, was born on this day in Buffalo in 1905.
In 1970, after working for the Presbyterian Church in New York for a quarter of a century, Miss Kuhn retired, having reached the mandatory retirement age of 65.
As a result, she worked with fellow retirees to start a group that would be called the Gray Panthers (a reference to the Black Panthers), which worked to bridge the gap between the young and the old and addressed other social issues.
Miss Kuhn remained involved with the organization until her death at age 89 in 1995.
“I’m an old woman,” she told The Times in 1972. “I have gray hair, many wrinkles and arthritis in both hands. And I celebrate my freedom from bureaucratic restraints that once held me.”
She embraced her age and was unapologetic about it.
On her 85th birthday, she told a group of seniors in Vermont in 1991: “I made a sacred vow that I would do something outrageous, at least once a week.”
Claire Moses wrote today’s Back Story.
Ageism creeps up in so many arenas. The current threats to Medicare, Social Security and Medicaid represent ageist responses to challenges. It's essential that Gray Panthers stand up to these backward-thinking initiatives. Please RSVP below so that we can be assured that Gray Panthers is represented. Looking forward to your voice being raised in support of Medicare, Social Security and Medicaid.
On July 30 we mark the 53rd anniversary of Medicare and Medicaid, and on Aug. 14 the 83rdanniversary of Social Security. Taken together, these three programs form the bedrock of our nation’s historic social contract and safety net, and of our health care system. For decades, millions of New Yorkers have benefited with better health and longevity, and our families protected from financial ruin.
Yet these programs are now facing very serious threats, if not outright attacks, from President Trump and his congressional allies. They want to cut and privatize Medicare. They want to cut, block grant, and “re-welfare-ize” Medicaid. And we know they have long wanted to privatize Social Security and cut benefits, but are too afraid to say so out loud (...yet.)
Why? To pay for their new tax cut law, and to give the super-rich EVEN MORE tax cuts.
This fall, New Yorkers can vote to protect and improve Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, and other health care and social programs. It’s our job to register voters, help them understand what’s at stake in this fall’s elections, and get them to the polls.
Join us on Thursday afternoon August 9th at 2:30 p.m. at the United Federation of Teachers to celebrate these cherished programs, and to recommit ourselves to fighting to protect them for the decades to come. We’ve all paid into these programs with every paycheck and income tax bill.
Come hear some inspiring speakers, share your own story, and enjoy some cake and refreshments!
Here’s where to find all the details:
What you can do to make our celebration a success:
· Plan to attend – RSVPs are essential so that we can plan for food!
· Spread the word!
· Let us know ASAP if you’d like your own group or union listed as a co-sponsor.
Looking forward to seeing everyone then!
Gray Panthers – making a big impact on the global stage. At the UN just more than a week ago (July 13, 2018), Sylvia Beales, representing Gray Panthers, had been selected as the “Lead Discussant” in an important session on the importance of “Leaving No One Behind” in global development. Attached are the remarks she delivered to all countries at the UN. As one of the globe’s most effective advocates on the rights of older persons, we are so proud to have Sylvia working with us. She always makes sense and convinces others to better address the rights and concerns of older persons. Thank you to Sylvia.
Gray Panthers vigorously represents the concerns of older persons and all who are aging. This year, at the UN's High Level Political Forum, we made inroads. We represent the people who need assistance. In this video clip, Jack Kupferman is asking a direct and pointed question to the country of Andorra. The world is listening. And, you can, too.
There will be a series of notices describing our constant efforts to confront ageism at the global, national and local level. Listen for yourself.