Handle With Care - Black Enterprise
Black Enterprise Magazine September/October 2018 Issue

African American caregivers are more likely than other groups to experience financial hardship as a result of home caregiving, reports Caregiving in the U.S.

The April 2004 report by the National Alliance for Caregiving (NAC) and AARP finds that 36% of black caregivers — defined as people taking care of an elderly parent or relative — spend $101 to $500 on their care recipient in a typical month. This is to cover, among other costs, groceries, transportation, and prescription medications. Although blacks spend less per week on caregiving than other groups, they earn less than the white, Asian American, and Hispanic caregivers surveyed. Only 33% of blacks report a household income of $50,000 or more. At that income level, the other groups are 42%, 53%, and 37%, respectively.

“It’s almost impossible to save enough money,” says Gail Gibson Hunt, president and CEO of NAC. “In New York City, long-term care could cost $100,000 a year.”

On average, home caregivers experience a loss of $659,139 over the total time period they’re caring for a loved one, according to The MetLife Juggling Act Study by NAC and the National Center on Women and Aging at Brandeis University. This includes lost wages ($566,443) and decreased Social Security ($25,494) and pension benefits ($67,202).

In Caregiving, black respondents said they spend nine to 20 hours a week providing care. Twenty-two percent of black caregivers (compared to 10% of whites) report that caregiving is a financial hardship. Also, caregivers limit or reduce their contributions to IRAs, savings, and investments as a result of the financial responsibilities of caregiving. (For more information on the cost of long-term care, see “A Cure for Health Concerns” in the November 2004 issue of BE.)

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Marcia Wade Talbert

Marcia is a multimedia content producer focusing on technology at Black Enterprise Magazine. In this capacity she writes and assigns stories to educate readers about social media; digital integration; gadgets, apps, and software for business and professional development; minority tech startups; and careers in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics). In 2012, she received two Salute to Excellence Awards from the National Association of Black Journalists and was recognized by Blacks in Technology (BiT) as one of the Top 10 Black achievers in the tech arena for 2011 at SXSW in Austin, Texas. She has spoken about technology on panels for New York Social Media Week, at The 2012 Rainbow/PUSH Wall Street Summit, as well as at Black Enterprise’s Entrepreneurs Conference and Women of Power Summit. In 2011, SocialWayne.com chose her as one of 28 People of Color Impacting the Social Web, and through crowdsourcing she was listed as one of BlackWeb2.0's/HP's 50 Most Notable African American Tastemakers in Social Media and Technology for 2010. Since taking on the role of Tech editor in September 2010, she has conceived and produced five cover stories on Technology and/or STEM and countless articles, videos, and slideshows online. Before joining BlackEnterprise.com as an interactive general assignment reporter in 2008, she freelanced with Black Enterprise beginning in 2003 while working as the technical editor at Prepared Foods magazine. There she further honed her writing skills and became an authority on food ingredients, including ingredients used in food fortification and enrichment. Meanwhile, her freelancing with Black Enterprise and BlackEnterprise.com helped her stay current on issues pertaining to the financial and business welfare of African Americans. As a general reporter for Black Enterprise she attended and reported on the Democratic and Republican National Conventions, where she interviewed Valerie Jarrett, senior advisor and assistant to President Barack Obama and U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder. Marcia has a Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture with an emphasis in food science from the University of Minnesota, and a Master of Science degree in journalism from Roosevelt University in Chicago. En route to her secondary degree, she served as the editor-in-chief of the Roosevelt University Torch, a weekly, student-run newspaper. An avid photographer and videographer, Marcia is one of several employees at BLACK ENTERPRISE who interned for the publishing company as a college student. She lives in New Jersey with her husband, a food scientist; her seventeen-month-old daughter; and “The Cat”, but still considers Chicago home.

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