Pride in our Identities Starts at Home: SAGE’s National LGBT Elder Housing Initiative

by Kelly Kent, Director of the National Housing Initiative for SAGE. For more information on SAGE’s National LGBT Elder Housing Initiative, visit http://www.sageusa.org/lgbthousing/ or contact Kelly at kkent@sagusa.org.

A growing proportion of our population is reaching retirement age in the coming years. Baby boomers, those born between the years of 1946 and 1964, began turning 65 in 2011. The age group 65 and older makes up the largest age group in the US and is growing at a faster rate than any other age group. Harvard’s Joint Center for Housing Studies (JCHS) released a report in 2016, which found that “over the next twenty years, the population.... Read More

             

Ships, Bridges, and Barriers: My Family in California

My grandfather passed through the Golden Gate — where the Golden Gate Bridge would later be constructed — in October 1903. He was on a ship from Japan that had stopped in Honolulu. The ship’s manifest notes that he was none of the following: an anarchist, a polygamist or a cripple.

My grandfather arrived in the time between the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882 and the Immigration Act of 1924 (which included the Asian Exclusion Act and the National Origins Act). By 1924 the U.S. government had completely blocked the immigration of people it deemed undesirable including Asians, Arabs, people with disabilities, formerly incarcerated people, people with a history of physical or mental health issues, and the poor — along.... Read More

             

New Report: LGBT Older Adults Face Unique Challenges to Successful Aging

The Movement Advancement Project (MAP) and SAGE have just released a report, Understanding Issues Facing LGBT Older Adults, which aims to increase awareness of the diverse needs of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) elders across the country. The report offers a comprehensive look into the experiences of LGBT elders, highlighting the challenges they face across a wide range of topics from health care to financial security and community support, and their resilience in the face of these challenges.

As America’s population rapidly ages (the number of people over 65 will double by 2050) so too do LGBT adults. Currently, there are more than 2.7 million LGBT adults aged.... Read More

             

Sexuality and Sexual Health Among Older Adults

This post originally appeared on the NHCOA blog.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau (2016), it is expected that by the year 2033 the population of older adults will outnumber people younger than 18 in the United States. With the life expectancy of older adults increasing, we must continue educating and informing this population on maintaining a healthy quality of life. Many older adults continue to be independent, expressing their basic needs, and engaging in and enjoying sexual relationships.

Aging is a natural process of life, and it is normal for the body to go through physiological and emotional changes, such as cognitive loss, and even higher vulnerability to diseases. However, basic needs, such as intimacy,.... Read More

             

Disrupting Silos: Combating Ageism and Xenophobia

This post originally appeared on the India Home blog.

Last month, India Home participated in the 2017 South Asian Americans Leading Together (SAALT) Summit in Washington, DC. India Home Deputy Director Lakshman Kalasapudi and Case Manager Afroditi Shah Panna joined over 300 activists, organizations, students, and community members from across the country who had come together to raise their voices on a range of issues important to South Asian communities.

Suman Raghunathan, Executive Director of SAALT, explained the thinking behind the Summit: “Our communities continue to live in various states of shock as a panorama of hate violence, civil rights violations, and anti-immigrant policies continue to impact South.... Read More

             

“We need the young folks to remember that we’re still here, and we’re still fighting.”

On Thursday, May 18th — a scorcher of a day here in New York City — I hopped on my bike and rode across the University Heights bridge from Manhattan to the Bronx to join in on the lunchtime SAGE Table at SAGE’s Bronx Center, one of hundreds of SAGE Table events happening across the country. I arrived, sweaty and hungry, to find the center’s lunchroom decked out in SAGE Table décor and buzzing with excitement. About a dozen attendees were sitting at tables covered in blue and silver cloth, and a table packed with food waited for the clock to strike 11am. I was greeted and welcomed by Marie, a regular SAGE participant, who was designated as the table.... Read More

             

How does the Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP) impact elders in Indian Country?

This post originally appeared on the NICOA blog.

The Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP) is the only federal community service and job training program focused exclusively on serving low-income older adults 55 and older, in nearly all 3,000 U.S. counties and territories through state and national grantees. Seventy-five percent of the money spent for this program goes directly to wages for 65,170 older Americans.

Participants in the program work and receive on the job training at 20,000 local nonprofit and government programs. These host agencies include libraries, senior centers, schools, and tribal government offices. Last year, SCSEP participants provided nearly 35 million staffing hours to these local programs, including more than 7 million hours serving older.... Read More

             

Fighting for Our Lives – Again!

Recently, I marched with thousands of other people in a candlelit rally here in San Francisco. We marched in unity – LGBTQ folks, women, undocumented immigrants, elderly straight folks, young kids, African Americans, Latinos – all the marginalized people who face dire and immediate threats from the Trump administration. We marched and chanted. We held each other, we commiserated, we cried and laughed, we pledged to support each other and to work together against the forces of racism and bigotry that have won this temporary victory at the polls. We pledged solidarity.

Then, about half a block down Castro, I was stopped, frozen in my tracks by a hand on my chest.

There was no one in front of me.

.... Read More
             

Until Death Do Us Part

We most often hear the phrase “Until Death Do Us Part” at weddings, when a couple commits to fidelity and love for one another until one of them dies. The traditional wedding vows say nothing about what accompanying someone to death involves. And the vast majority of us have no training in what the dying process involves and what is required to sit with a loved one as they are dying.

My mom died in December at age 95. In reflecting on the end of her life, “until death do us part” is the phrase that keeps coming to mind. I think our bonds to parents and family are as deep as any marriage vow, and they span more of.... Read More

             
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