To put food on the table or treat an injury or ailment?
That's the reality facing many Americans dealing with injuries and other ailments who are forced to work beyond retirement age, if they're even able to continue working at all.
According to a recent Associated Press poll, nearly 1 in 4 Americans don't expect to retire, and another quarter expect to continue working beyond the age of 65.
As we've mentioned before, the fastest growing segment of the American workforce is women aged 65-84. By 2024, there will be 6.3 million working women over the age of 65 with 800,000 of those in California.
The Commission on Health and Safety says working women over the age of 55 have a 50 percent higher injury rate.
The Workers' Compensation Research Institute last year released a report showing California's workers' compensation system was the slowest from injury to date of treatment for everything except the initial medical exam.
All signs point to a catastrophic failure in California's policies to protect an aging workforce.
Ensuring our workers' compensation system is prepared for this new reality is crucial. A life in which people have to decide whether to eat or treat is simply unacceptable.