Rep. Deutch Introduces Resolution to Celebrate Nat'l Honor Our LGBT Elders Day
Today, U.S. Representative Ted Deutch (FL-22) introduced a resolution recognizing and celebrating National Honor Our LGBT Elders Day, which is on May 16. National Honor Our LGBT Elders Day was established in 2015 to celebrate and commemorate the contributions of the older generation of LGBT individuals.
Rep. Deutch serves as the Chair of the LGBT Caucus Elders Taskforce and represents the vibrant LGBT community of Wilton Manors.
Click here to read the resolution.
The resolution is cosponsored by Reps. David N. Cicilline, Sean Patrick Maloney, Chris Pappas, Mark Pocan, Mark Takano, Ritchie Torres, Karen Bass, Suzanne Bonamici, Charlie Crist, Val B. Demings, Dwight Evans, Lois Frankel, Raúl M. Grijalva, Brian Higgins, Sara Jacobs, Alan Lowenthal, Carolyn B. Maloney, Eleanor Holmes Norton, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Mike Quitgley, Jan Schakowsky, Darren Soto, Paul D. Tonko, and Nikema Williams.
"The elder generation of the LGBT community helped our country make significant strides toward equality, and they continued that fight in the face of decades of bigotry and, too frequently, violence," said Rep. Deutch. "We should celebrate this population for who they are and what they have accomplished to help bring about incredible change for all LGBT people. As we strive for greater equality for the LGBT community and a more robust safety net for older Americans, it is important that we ensure LGBT older Americans have access to culturally sensitive and clinically competent services and care."
The National Resource Center of LGBT Aging reports that there are three million LGBT American adults over 50 years of age and that number is expected to grow to around seven million by 2030.
LGBT older adults face unique challenges as they age. They are two times more likely to be single and live alone and four times less likely to have children. The Movement Advancement Project and Sage report that LGBT older adults are more likely to face poverty and homelessness and to have poor physical and mental health.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, homophobia, transphobia, and biphobia contribute to disparities in physical and mental health indicators such as depression, substance use, cancer, and experiences of abuse and violence.
"We appreciate the leadership of Rep. Deutch and the entire LGBT Caucus Elders Taskforce in lifting-up the contributions the Stonewall generation has made – and continues to make – in the fight for equality,” said SAGE CEO Michael Adams. “We hope the Senate will honor LGBT elders by following the lead of the House and passing the Equality Act."
“I am very grateful to Representative Deutch for this historic resolution for National Honor Our LGBT Elders Day," said Sam McClure, Executive Director of The Center for LGBTQ Health Equity of Chase Brexton Health Care. "Our Elders endured indignities and violence and yet they still laid the groundwork for the equality movement. Now the next generations must pause to honor our Elders and to learn from them. Our rich history will inform a more just and equitable future.”
"Every day, we strive to honor the LGBTQ+ elders in our community through vital, engaging services that celebrate, nurture and empower,” says Robert Boo, CEO of The Pride Center at Equality Park. "The largest weekly gathering of LGBTQ+ Seniors in the United States is at The Pride Center with our Tuesday morning 'Coffee and Conversation.' Over the past few months, we’ve watched beautiful Active Agers fill The Residences at Equality Park. The new 48-unit development on our campus represents Florida’s first affordable housing community with customized supportive services for the LGBTQ+ active aging community. This joyous culmination of a seven year process means these local Seniors now have a safe, welcoming home where they can be their authentic selves. Our staff continues to triage the needs of countless Active Agers struggling through a pandemic. And plans are underway for our 12th Annual Virtual Active Aging Expo on October 16. This provides LGBTQ+ adults with a unique, comprehensive overview of community resources, with exhibits and resources reflecting health, finance, insurance, legal, travel, entertainment, retirement, and a number of helpful community organizations. Honoring our elders means not only celebrating—but meeting real needs in ways that lift and connect people to supportive community."