Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The graying of Sangamon County

Sangamon County is closing in on the Big 40.

The estimated median age of Sangamon County residents is at 39.3 years, with final census data to be released later this year. The county has “aged” two years since the 2000 Census and more than five since 1990.

It’s also above the state and national median age.

Carolyn Peck, associate professor of human services-gerontology at the University of Illinois Springfield, couldn’t say why Sangamon County is slightly older than average, though she said several factors could be examined.

“You could look at poverty rates in Sangamon County in comparison to other counties and see, demographically, do we have a higher socioeconomic standard for living that might increase health or do more people have health insurance,” she said. “It’s an interesting observation.”

Nationally, people are living longer, a trend that will only continue, she said.

Peck's comments were featured in an October 19, 2010, edition of The State Journal-Register.

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