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MIDDLE CLASS SECURITY PROJECT

PPI Research examines the prospects for secure middle-class retirement.  

 

See also personal stories of struggling middle-class Americans.

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Data Center

PPI State Data Center

Data by state on Americans 50-plus: health, financial security, housing, caregiving and more.  Read

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Learn about the policy development process at AARP, and read about AARP's positions on public issues in The Policy Book, AARP Public Policies
2011-2012.
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Faces of Chronic Care, a video produced by AARP’s Public Policy Institute, explores the difficulties faced by many older Americans with chronic health conditions as they (and their caregivers) navigate the health delivery system. Watch

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Nursing

PPI is home to the Center to Champion Nursing in America, an initiative of AARP, the AARP Foundation and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. The Center coordinates the Future of Nursing: Campaign for Action, a nationwide initiative to transform health care through nursing, engaging a wide range of health care professionals, consumer advocates, policy-makers, and the business, academic, and philanthropic communities. More

Middle Class Security Project, AARP Public Policy Institute

The Elusive Middle in America – What Has Happened to Middle-Class Income?

This paper by AARP Public Policy Institute’s Gary Koenig reports that the middle class today is smaller as well as older, more educated, more racially and ethnically diverse, and more likely to be single than middle-class households in the past. It notes that most Americans identify themselves as middle class and that “middle class” is not synonymous with “middle income.”  However, due to the broad availability of data on Americans’ income, researchers typically use income as an indicator of membership in the middle class.  The paper shows what it means to be “middle class” under three income-based definitions and analyzes economic trends affecting Americans in the middle income brackets

Significantly, this paper reports that from 1979 to 2007, average household income for the middle class grew about 16 percent – only one-third the growth for households with the highest income (whose income grew about 48 percent).  More recently, from 2000 to 2011, median household income fell 8 percent and was lower in 2011 than it was in 1997.

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