The Diverse Elders Coalition, in collaboration with the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus, is hosting a Congressional Briefing on July 14, 2015, the day after the 2015 White House Conference on Aging. Coinciding with the 50th Anniversary of the Older Americans Act, this Briefing will discuss elders of color, indigenous elders, LGBT elders, and elders living with HIV/AIDS in light of the White House conference and will identify needs and challenges moving forward. The Diverse Elders Coalition will present a report documenting their engagement with the White House Conference on Aging and their policy recommendations on how to improve the lives of diverse elders and their families.
Congressmember Mark Takano (D-CA) will join the Briefing and provide comments. Rep. Takano.... Read More
“I am a 60-year-old Trans Woman living with HIV:” Helena’s Story
As we enter the last days of Pride Month, I’m hopeful that the momentum from the US Supreme Court’s decision legalizing gay marriage in all 50 states will carry us through the rest of the year. Even after the rainbow flags have been put away and the glitter has been swept from the streets, it is crucial that we continue to fight for the rights of the LGBTQ community, in particular our vulnerable LGBTQ elders.
All too often, elders are left out of the conversation around HIV and STDs — we rarely see our elders targeted by HIV prevention and treatment campaigns. But older adults are still at risk for infections and should still be getting tested..... Read More
As a part of our ongoing Pride Month celebration, we’re featuring some of the most touching and inspiring stories from our Diverse Elders Stories Initiative. This week, we’re spotlighting the life of Paul Regalos-Urban, a gay, transgender, Latino elder. The introduction below comes from his friend and fellow activist, Vince Criostomo. We hope you will be moved by Vince’s introduction and will read Paul’s story, as well as the others in our archives.
Vince Crisostomo is the Program Manager for the San Francisco AIDS Foundation’s 50-Plus Network.
My name is Vince Crisostomo. In April 2014, I joined the Read More
Get Tested! Resources for older adults on National HIV Testing Day
Diverse older adults with HIV are living longer lives.
From the first known cases of the HIV epidemic in 1981 until the mid-1990s, most people diagnosed with HIV faced death within a few years, if not much sooner. Yet with the advent of effective anti-retroviral treatments, HIV has become a more manageable chronic illness over the last two decades, as evidenced by the increasing numbers of older people living and aging with HIV. The disease continues to disproportionately affect diverse people, as somestudies have found that gay and bisexual men are 44 times more likely to contract HIV than other men, while African Americans and Latinos are 12 and 5 times more likely to be HIV positive than their peers.
When members of our diverse elder communities work together, it feels like there is so much power, shared history, and ambition in the room. We’ve loved hearing stories of multiple organizations getting together to work on issues around the White House Conference on Aging, for example, like our May 7th Listening Session in Los Angeles. Coalition- and community-building are so important to the vitality of our constituencies. At the Diverse Elders Coalition, we’re really glad to be making these connections and amplifying the voices of our communities.
The effects of HIV on the Caribbean Diaspora and Caribbean-American communities in the U.S. are devastating. Just like other diverse communities, health disparities— including diabetes, cancer, cardiovascular diseases, and HIV/AIDS— as well as access to health care are prevalent in this population. Given that the U.S. Caribbean-American population is also underrepresented in national data and statistics as many are grouped under the African-American demographic, it is important to commemorate yearly events such as the National Caribbean-American HIV/AIDS Awareness Day (NCAHAAD) to promote health education, engagement, and HIV testing among diverse communities.
Every year on June 8, Caribbean-American leaders across the country sponsor.... Read More
When we unveiled our request for stories for the new Diverse Elders Stories Initiative back in April, I wasn’t sure what kind of responses we would get. What are the challenges facing our elders and their communities? How can we put those challenges into concise, thoughtful stories? Would anyone write to us at all?
Thankfully, Mikael Wagner arrived to assuage my fears. He sent us his story within a week of our call for submissions – the first person to do so – and it was everything I could have hoped for in a story. Mikael was diagnosed with.... Read More
Older Adults with HIV and the White House Conference on Aging
by Mark Brennan-Ing, Director for Research and Evaluation at ACRIA and the ACRIA Center for HIV and Aging.
The year 2015 marks a watershed moment in the HIV epidemic.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that this year, fully half of those aging with HIV will be over the age of 50. As we reach this benchmark, preparations are underway for the 2015 White House Conference on Aging (WHCOA), which may represent the first WHCOA where the issue of HIV and aging will be addressed.
The 2015 Aging in America Conference wraps up today in Chicago, IL. This week has provided a unique opportunity for the Diverse Elders Coalition and its members to share their work and connect with thousands of other participants from around the country working on issues of concern for elders. As a first time attendee, I was particularly impressed with (and maybe a bit overwhelmed by) the size and scope of the conference.
I kicked off the conference on the first day with a morning session talking about HIV/AIDS as part of an inter-generational dialogue entitled “Being Gay Ain’t What it Used to Be” with my colleague and friend, Read More
LGBT Health Awareness Week: It’s Time To Come Together
March 23-27 marks National LGBT Health Awareness Week, and we at the Diverse Elders Coalition are excited to raise awareness about the issues facing the LGBTQ communities, especially LGBT older people. The National Coalition for LGBT Health created National LGBT Health Awareness Week in 2003 to promote increased health awareness and outcomes in the LGBT community and promote the need for greater cultural competency in the healthcare system. This year’s theme is “Time to Come Together: Trust, Transparency, Truth.”
Throughout the Week, the Coalition brings together national and state LGBT organizations, health centers, health departments, universities, health organizations, clinical and behavioral.... Read More