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Raise a Toast to Older Americans

They're active, educated, and politically involved

FRIDAY, May 24, 2002 (HealthDayNews) -- It's time to celebrate gray power.

May is Older Americans Month, an official opportunity to take special note of the 35 million Americans who are 65 and older.

And here are some interesting U.S. Census Bureau facts and figures about that 12 percent of the population:

  • They hold 14 percent of civilian jobs.
  • 49,000 of them were enrolled in college in October 2000.
  • 22 percent of men and 11 percent of women aged 65 to 84, and 17 percent of men and 11 percent of women aged 85 and older have college degrees.
  • 72 percent of Americans ages 65 to 74 voted in the 2000 presidential elections. That's the highest rate of any age group.
  • Older Americans have the highest rate of home ownership, with 81 percent of those aged 65 to 74 owning the home in which they live.
  • The United States ranks second in the number of people 80 and older. The U.S. has 5 percent of the world's population and 13 percent of the world's people who are 80 and older.
  • Walking is the most popular form of exercise for older Americans, followed by swimming, and exercising with equipment.
SOURCE: U.S. Census Bureau 2000 Census
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