LGBTQ advocacy groups SAGE and the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Foundation have released a first-of-its-kind consumer guide for LGBTQ elders to find safe and affirming long-term care communities.
The guide aims to inform LGBTQ elders with questions they should ask and what they should look for when selecting a long-term care community.
“We all deserve to feel safe and have our needs met when seeking care,” Jay Brown, HRC Senior Vice President of Programs, Research, and Training, said in a statement. “A long-term care community’s dedication to LGBTQ inclusivity must be rooted in inclusive policies and practices and this guide gives consumers the tools they need to ask the right questions. This resource is rooted in research and a dedicated partnership between the HRC Foundation and SAGE.”
The comprehensive guide covers a variety of topics, including LGBTQ welcoming policies, practices, and environments; examples and resources to assist in the search for an LGBTQ-inclusive facility; and an email template for consumers to inquire into a community’s LGBTQ policies.
“We hear far too many stories about LGBTQ elders who face discrimination and mistreatment in long-term care,” SAGE CEO Michael Adams said in a statement. “An important part of the solution is giving elders the information they need to make their best possible choices when looking at long-term care options. This guide will empower older LGBTQ people to make choices that will allow them to be their authentic selves at whatever long-term care community they choose.”
The HRC Foundation and SAGE released their Long-Term Care Equality Index earlier this year, which evaluates long-term care communities nationwide based on the equity and inclusion of their LGBTQ residents and patients. Seven communities in Georgia participated in the LEI: Barrington Square in Ackworth, Athena Gardens in Athens, Cedar Heights in Cedartown, Magnolia Grove in Jackson, Laurel’s Edge in Kennesaw, The Villas in Rome, and Winding Hollow in Winder.