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LGBT Older Adults and Exclusion from Aging Programs and Services

September 2010 | Services & Advocacy for GLBT Elders (SAGE), Movement Advancement Project (MAP)

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LGBT older adults often face harassment or hostility when accessing aging programs and when frequenting senior centers, volunteer centers or places of worship. Few aging service providers plan for, or conduct outreach to, the LGBT community - and few are prepared to address acts of discrimination aimed at LGBT elders by staff or other older people. This makes many LGBT older adults reluctant to access mainstream aging services, which increases their social isolation and negatively impacts their physical and mental health.One of eleven issue briefs based on the SAGE/MAP report Improving the Lives of LGBT Older Adults. Note: This publication was created before the June 2013 US Supreme Court decision overturning Section 3 of DOMA, so some information contained herein may no longer be applicable.


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vanessa   July 5, 2012 at 12:29 PM
Senior living communities are notoriously conservative in many places as I have personally experienced. Transphobia is especially rampant and was so bad that I had to leave one very nice senior community in Las Vegas 5 years ago. even the staff didn't want me there despite the fact that I treated people with dignity and respect. the elderly are for the most part very conservative (nothing new there), but there are exceptions: I do have some supportive people in this place I live in. However, I still feel for the most part I am living behind enemy lines. I had much the same problem in Hawaii where I lived for 5 years from 2000 to 2005. Much of the problem there is due to organized religion and immigrants from Asia who are generally intolerant of anyone different from their own group. In Florida in the 1980's where I started my transition from mtf, it was so bad that after 4 years of hell working with professionals with advanced degrees and living in a very hostile community in Orlando, Florida, I fled to Seattle, WA where I got the help and recommendations for surgery (done in 1989). As you can see, for a 65 year old mtf post-op t, I've had a lot of experience with hate. I dread the day I am older and helpless and have to be taken care of. Vanessa

Bill Cohen   June 2, 2011 at 11:05 AM
Do you have any materials on aging and sexuality in LGBT populations?

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