Younger and older callers are equally likely to seek COVID-19 information and help paying electric bills when they call 2-1-1, but for many other needs, requests vary widely by age. Younger 2-1-1 callers are more likely to request help feeding children, while older callers are more likely to request food pantries and home-delivered meals. Younger callers are also more likely to need shelters, rent assistance, clothing, and personal hygiene products like diapers. Older callers are more likely to request mortgage assistance and mental health services. These findings are based on analysis of 529,975 requests received by 2-1-1s in 15 states during the COVID-19 pandemic, March 12 – June 30, 2020. These 2-1-1s were selected because they record caller age for some or all requests. Only those requests linked to age data were included. Callers ≤ 45 years old were classified as “younger” and caller > 45 were classified as “older.” Mouse over each bar in the charts below to see the total number of requests. Many findings are intuitive and likely reflect life stage (e.g., younger individuals are more likely to need to feed and diaper children) or eligibility for services (e.g., older adults and home-delivered meals). Others, such as requests for mental health services and food pantries being higher among older adults, should be further explored. States included: AL, CT, FL, HI, IA, IL, KY, MD, NE, NJ, NY, OH, PA, WA, WY.
Contributors: Cindy Charles, Rachel Garg, Balaji Golla, Irum Javed, Matthew Kreuter