Tina and Jackie were born in the same town in 1947. Despite similar beginnings, their lives take very different turns. In 1967, Tina meets Frank. And Jackie meets Frances. As a same-sex couple, Jackie and Frances couldn’t marry, were denied spousal benefits, and experienced a lifetime of discrimination and lost wages. Fast forward to today, and Jackie, like so many other older adults, struggles with financial insecurity, social isolation, and overall lack of health and well-being, simply because they are lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT).
by Chandra Thomas Whitfield. This article originally appeared on NBCNews.com.
Cecelia Hayden Smith, 72, knows exactly how she wants to live out the remainder of her golden years: lounging lazily on the porch of a cozy house tucked along a quiet, treelined street in Washington, D.C.
She’d greet her partner each morning with a homemade country breakfast, and their afternoons and evenings would be filled with lively games of Spades and Bid Whist with a dozen or so housemates — all fellow LGBTQ elders.
“I’ve already picked out my rocking chair,” the retired substance abuse counselor quipped. “Just call me ‘Mama C,’ and make sure my room is in the front, so I can always see.... Read More
“We need to ensure that older adults are centered in the LGBT movement.”
We’re continuing our Pride Month series of interviews with staff from SAGE || Advocacy and Services for LGBT Elders. Today, we’re talking with Karalin Sprague, Manager of Lifelong Learning. Kara tells us about the exciting programming for LGBTQ older adults and allies happening at SAGE Centers around the city, and the most moving moments from Pride Month 2017.
What is your role with SAGE? I’m the Manager of Lifelong Learning, which means that I oversee all of the programming related to art, culture, education, socialization and technology across SAGE’s five New York City sites. I have a bird’s eye view of our programs across the city, so.... Read More
Take pride in your community, take initiative, and be a voice for LGBTQ older adults
It’s Pride Month, and the Diverse Elders Coalition is excited to continue its series of interviews with advocates from SAGE || Advocacy and Services for LGBT Elders. This week, we talk with Daniel Puerto, Outreach Coordinator, about what LGBT older adults and their allies can do to celebrate Pride Month — in June, and beyond.
What is your role with SAGE? I just joined SAGE in March, so I’m very new to the organization. Prior to working at SAGE, I come from an immigrant rights/social justice advocacy organization called Make the Road NY, where I’ve worked since I was 16. My position with SAGE supports outreach capacity and.... Read More
LGBT Older Adults Run a Higher Risk for These Three Chronic Conditions
Chronic conditions can be difficult to manage at the best of times, but for many LGBT older adults, barriers to health care, lack of health insurance, and fear of discrimination by doctors threatens the healthy aging of a generation.
Studies suggest that LGBT older adults have higher rates of chronic conditions and other health problems, such as obesity, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, arthritis, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and more..... Read More
Finding a Place to Call Home: Dr. Dio Gica Talks SAGE, Pride Month, and Housing for LGBT Older Adults
It’s LGBT Pride Month, and we’re celebrating all month long with a series of interviews with staff at SAGE || Advocacy and Services for LGBT Elders. Today’s interview is with Dr. Diosdado Gica, Chief Program Officer. Dio presented with the Diverse Elders Coalition during the 2017 Aging in America conference in Chicago, IL. Here he talks about Pride Month, intersectionality, and what it means to have a safe place to call your home.
What is your role with SAGE? I am SAGE’s Chief Program Officer, and in addition to managing the direct services we provide here.... Read More
Now Available: SAGE Health Storylines Self-Care App
The SAGE Health Storylines self-care app makes it easy for older adults and caregivers to track their health. When you open the app, you will see a variety of tools including medication tracker, daily moods and symptom tracker which allow you to build your health story. The My Storylines feature allows you to learn more about your health, and to share more – safely and securely – with your doctor about what happened between visits.
This app was designed in partnership.... Read More
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 firstname.lastname@example.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
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
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.
Midstreamers is a new group at Affinity that addresses the unique needs of LGBTQ women of color 50 years of age and older. It is a welcomed addition to the current peer led groups: 40 plus, Trailblazers, Spectrum and Proud Parents.
Midstreamers is an energetic group of women who represent a significant cohort of Affinity’s constituency. Most recently, the group enjoyed a theatre outing in January, attending “Blues for an Alabama Sky” at the Court Theatre in Chicago’s Hyde Park. The event was well attended by members and guests.
People often ask me, “Why do we need a place for LGBT older people to live? Don’t we have enough nursing homes and retirement homes for them to use?”
So I often share the story of John, a well-to-do gay elder who was found deceased — in his welcoming, upscale retirement complex. He had stopped going to church. He had stopped playing cards and going to the clubs. He had stopped interacting with his friends.
Or I sometimes share the sorrow of my older friend, Helen, who after the death of her partner, was asked by her partner’s siblings to leave.... Read More