Research shows that LGBT older adults face unique challenges in aging compared to their cisgender, heterosexual peers. On a host of important metrics, including mental and physical health, rates of discrimination, lifetime earnings, employment, and retirement saving, and access to family support, LGBT older adults fare worse than their counterparts. However, despite their significant need, LGBT older adults are “20% less likely than their heterosexual peers to access government services such as housing assistance, meal programs, food stamps, and senior centers.”
In July, on behalf of Services and Advocacy for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Elders , Democracy Forward submitted a comment to OMB, outlining the above problem, discussing the reasons for this inequity, and proposing potential solutions. This comment was submitted as part of an OMB request for information on methods and leading practices for advancing equity and support for underserved communities through government.
Specifically, the comment recommended that federal agencies should expand and make consistent data collection regarding sexual orientation and gender identity to better assess equity in agency programs. It also proposed advancing equitable access to care and services for LGBT older adults by funding new programs, including a program to train healthcare and social service providers to identify and address caregiving challenges faced by underserved communities.
Read the entire comment here.