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South Florida Sun-Sentinel

AARP Markets To Hispanic Seniors

By Diane C. Lade

January 7, 2002
Copyright © 2002
South Florida Sun-Sentinel. All Rights Reserved.

AARP, the lobbying and marketing group with such name recognition that it now goes by initials only, is determined to win the hearts and minds of America's Hispanic seniors.

The organization's latest effort is Segunda Juventud, or Second Youth, a slick, 16-page newsletter with news, health information and features targeting Hispanic Americans ages 50 and older.

The first 200,000 copies will start arriving in Hispanic households in South Florida, Houston, New York, Los Angeles and Puerto Rico this week.

AARP Publications, which created the My Generation Baby Boom magazine alternative to Modern Maturity last year, spent almost $1 million to develop, produce and mail Segunda Juventud. It hopes to double circulation by the end of the year.

State Director Bentley Lipscomb, who came to Miami for the publication's first public appearance, said AARP considers it a worthwhile investment.

There are 5 million Hispanics 50 and older nationwide, and those numbers are expected to triple in the next 25 years.

"What is it worth to deal with the Hispanic population? We want to be relevant to all older people: African-Americans, whites and Hispanics," Lipscomb said. "There are cultural differences involving aging with all of these groups, and we need to be sensitive to that."

So far, no organization has stepped forward to champion Hispanics' needs in midlife and retirement, and there are no national magazines for Hispanic seniors.

Fernando M. Torres-Gil, an expert on multicultural seniors and a former U.S. assistant secretary on aging, said large Hispanic advocacy groups such as the National Council of La Raza focus on issues such as immigration, housing and affirmative action -- more of interest to younger people.

"Enter AARP," said Torres-Gil, director of UCLA's Center for Policy Research on Aging. "The opportunity is there. The need is there, and AARP is stepping into the vacuum. They're really the only organization with the resources to reach Hispanic boomers."

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