Hi this is Anthony Diaz. Did you know that there are concerns and issues that the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) face as they start to age? It can be difficult and scary. Many of the LGBT have had to face challenges such as stigma, prejudice, family of origin abandonment, income, benefits exclusion and more.
As the gay transgender community ages, these difficulties do not go away, and often increase. We discover that often times, this community does not get enough health care, social services and couples do not get programs like Social Security or Medicare, which can have a direct impact millions of LGBT seniors.
With over 28 years of experience under my belt for the aging population, I feel it is important that I try to help raise awareness about the concerns that this populations that may experience as they age. The National Council on Aging and the American Society on Aging in Chicago did a study on the aging LGBT and found that this population of older adults faced issues such as isolation and unequal treatment. What this study demonstrated was this population tends to be a little poorer and sicker as they age and have far less social and community engagement.
A number of problems faced by LGBT seniors stem from the fact that they do not have the same family support systems as heterosexual people do. Legal policy often exclude LGBT people adding social and economic consequences which sadly, can deny LGBT seniors access to financial resources and community support networks.
There’s a great deal of challenges and pitfalls for same-sex couples and I am glad to be part of a team that helps the LGBT community age and face these issues with what we hope is not only helpful but hopeful.