I find myself attending LGBTQ Asian American/Pacific Islander (AAPI) events with less and less frequency over time. At one point, queer AAPI community events made up most of my calendar; now, hardly at all. Part of it is that other activities and responsibilities occupy my time, including family responsibilities. Part of it is that my tastes have changed – I am now much happier spending an evening with a few friends at home rather than going out. And speaking of going out: part of it is my lifestyle has changed. I was recently invited to an event that started at 10:00 p.m.! I mean, who does that?! Oh, right, I did, once upon a time.
During Black History Month, Mary’s House for Older Adults, SAGE Metro DC, and AARP DC held a LGBTQ/SGL (same gender-loving) State of the Union. One of the issues brought to the forefront was the increase of suicides among LGBTQ elders in nursing homes and other facilities. Surprised?
While we’re all sort of aware that suicide is a leading cause of death for youth aged 10 to 24, we rarely think of it as a leading cause for elders. However, the National Council on Aging (NCOA) has a startling statistic: people 45-64 years old had the highest suicide rate in 2013, and elders 85 years.... Read More
Remembering Our Seniors on National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day
On National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day (NBHAAD), the Diverse Elders Coalition and MetroWeekly are pleased to present a guest post from Earl D. Fowlkes, President/CEO of the Center for Black Equity:
February 7, 2016 marks the 16th National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day (NBHAAD), a national HIV testing and treatment community mobilization initiative targeted at Blacks in the United States and the Diaspora. This year’s theme is “We are Our Brother/Sister’s Keeper: FIGHT HIV/AIDS.” I had cause to take a moment to reflect on the impact that HIV/AIDS has on my life, particularly as a Gay Black Man..... Read More
Rage Against the Dying of the Light: Aging from Diverse Perspectives
SAGE is proud to be presenting on a panel with our partners in the Diverse Elders Coalition at the upcoming LGBT Policy Conference, Creating Change, taking place this week in Chicago. The panel is entitled, “Rage Against the Dying of the Light: Aging from Diverse Perspectives.”
The panel will discuss the specific needs that diverse elders have as they age and whether current programs, services, supports, and laws allow us to meet the needs of these growing and intersecting populations. It will delve into a variety of “isms” and phobias, from racism and ageism to transphobia and biphobia. And it will explore what we can do at the federal, state, and local levels to address the.... Read More
Growing Older Together: Queer People of Color and Aging
As I get older, I find myself having more and more questions about how best to care for my aging parents, how my wife Mala and I can best plan for our retirement and beyond, and how we can best support and remain active in our LGBTQ people of color movements. I also see for the first time a critical mass of queer people of color (QPOC) who have been out for years or even decades, and are now at or near retirement age.
So I’m more excited than ever about the upcoming Creating Change conference in Chicago from January 20-24. We’ll have several opportunities for conversations with other QPOC elders who are grappling with these same questions and.... Read More
Next week, our friends at the National LGBTQ Task Force are holding their annual Creating Change conference, the largest LGBTQ social justice conference in the country. With a mission of advancing LGBTQ liberation, Creating Change is expected to bring 5,000 activists from around the country to Chicago this January 20-24th. As a longtime participant in this conference, which has taken place annually for 28 years, I look forward to this yearly opportunity to reconnect with friends and colleagues from around the country, to meet new people, and to continue learning about the great work happening in communities everywhere.
This year, I’m excited to be part of ground-breaking programming at Creating Change specifically geared to a unique Read More
LGBT Older Adults Town Hall, or the First Time I Visited Florida
I have a confession. Until last week, I had never been to Florida. As a West Coaster for much of my life, Florida was simply too far. My inaugural visit was to Fort Lauderdale and included: eating lots of tacos; having everyone apologize to me because it was 80 degrees and overcast; attending the largest weekly gathering of LGBT older adults in the US; visiting with folks from our oldest affiliate, SAGE of South Florida and our newest, SAGE Tampa Bay; and, the main reason for my visit, serving on a panel at Town Hall meeting focused on LGBT older adults. I was proud to join a.... Read More
Standing Strong with the Muslim Community: Learning History’s Lessons
The times we’re living in are fraught with too much fear and violence. Recent shootings in Paris and San Bernardino have turned tragedy into political gamesmanship, as politicians have turn leaps of logic and coded language to equate all Muslims with terrorists. From Donald Trump’s call for a complete ban on Muslims entering the country to the thirty one governors who have stated their opposition to accepting Syrian Muslim refugees, despite their legal obligation to do so, and the fact that they are fleeing the very extremism the governors are claiming to oppose. Political rhetoric has become so polarized, the policy debates in which that rhetoric operates have become antagonistic, and as a result, gridlock has become politics as usual.
A year into working at the Diverse Elders Coalition, I’ve been struck by the learning curve for the range of issues facing the elder constituencies our member organizations serve. I have worked on some of these issues in previous jobs, and I have some experience in policy areas such as immigration, LGBT equality, language access, and cultural competence. What has been exciting in the past thirteen months I’ve been with the DEC is thinking about these issues and their impact on the range of programs, legislation, and policy that specifically relate to aging populations. From Social Security to Medicare, applying an intersectional analysis has allowed me to think about how different kinds of discrimination such as ageism and xenophobia “intersect”.... Read More
Reflections on Activism and the ADA From the DEC’s Newest Team Member
My name is Raymond Magsaysay and I’m interning for the Diverse Elders Coalition for the summer through OCA’s flagship summer internship program. I am a rising junior at Vassar College majoring in Sociology and minoring in Hispanic Studies and English: Race & Ethnicity. I am so excited and honored to be working with and learning from the DEC this summer as many of my personal passions parallel the organization’s mission. Like the DEC, I am committed to social justice, focusing on coalition-building and intersectionality as vehicles for social change. In other words, collective power—forged through shared stories and struggle—and, as Audre Lorde pointed out, the cognizance that “there is no thing as a single-issue struggle because we do not.... Read More
Op-ed: Pride Needs to Include More Than the Young and Cute
For 25 years, DC Black Pride has been a Memorial Day weekend tradition of celebration and education for Washington, D.C.’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community. Taking place Friday through Sunday at the Washington Grand Hyatt hotel, this year’s event will see several thousand converging for parties, workshops, and live entertainment. For the first time, this year’s festival intentionally includes older adults in its programming. It also highlights a cause near and dear to my heart: Mary’s House for Older Adults, the first of its kind LGBTQI-friendly residence in D.C. for people age 60 and over.
CONTACT: Jenna McDavid, Diverse Elders Coalition Ben de Guzman, Diverse Elders Coalition email@example.com 202-347-9733 x235
Diverse Elder Communities in Los Angeles Hosting Town Hall to Discuss the 2015 White House Conference on Aging
Los Angeles, CA – May 7, 2015
WHAT: In order to ensure that the voices of communities of color and LGBTQ communities in Los Angeles are represented at this year’s White House Conference on Aging, the Diverse Elders Coalition is joining local and national organizations to put on a Town Hall in Los Angeles with Nora Super, Executive Director of the White House Conference and Aging. At this event, elders of color, LGBT.... Read More