While many LGBTQ baby boomers are living vibrant, healthy, full lives across the US, there are thousands that face challenges that their fellow hetrosexual counterparts do not have to deal with. Higher rates of isolation, discrimination, poor health, and access to quality health services are a few of the issues faced by aging LGBT folx.
The lifelong toll of discrimination has prompted some to go back into the closet due to concerns that caregivers and/or other services might turn them away because of their sexual orientation and/or gender identity. Even with the advancement for LGBT civil rights, these individuals remain a mostly invisible and underserved population.
As a financial advisor specializing in retirement planning for many older gay and lesbian clients, I have been witness to the intolerance, fear of religious objection, bullying, and abuse within housing, caregiving, and healthcare settings many of them have experienced—sometimes even from members of their own family.
Our pioneering generation of LGBTQ elders should not have to hide their identities in order to survive as they age — especially after they have fought for decades to gain the rights and visibility we may now take for granted. Now is the time for the entire LGBT community and its allies to advocate for change to ensure that not only the vanguards of our community receive the respect and attention they deserve, but that quality care and services are there for all of us as we age.
Connecting in LGBT Community to Increase Caring Services
There are many local opportunities to reach out and build community connections Here are just a few examples of ways to come together to strengthen the LGBTQ support network:
- Explore Inclusive Housing Options
About 91% of older LGBT folx are at least somewhat interested in LGBT-welcoming housing development for older adults. Several initiatives are underway right here in South Florida, including Lambda Living’s 15-unit LGBT-focused intergenerational housing program in North Miami and the Residences at Equality Park in Wilton Manors. There is also the “Golden Girls Housing” trend, where single seniors connect to share a house as roommates.
- Build Relationships
Visit your local LGBT Community Center for programming that may include drop-ins, peer-support or discussion groups, information and referral services, designated spaces for older adults, exercise and fitness programs, movie-going, museum and theater groups, dances, computer training and Internet access, speakers bureaus, community service projects, vacation cruises and day trips, hot meals, art classes and writing workshops, newsletters, and guest speakers. There are several well-established and active centers within South Florida to check out, including The Pride Center at Equality Park,SunServe, Fort Lauderdale Prime Gentlemen,Lambda Living Program for LGBT Seniors (Jewish Community Services), Unity Coalition, and Compass Community Center.
- Attend Community Events
Connect with the wider LGBT community in celebration during the upcoming series of virtual Pride events. This year, Pride has taken a turn of its events to our screens in light of the pandemic. Boston Pride this year will be celebrating their 50th anniversary and they have organized a series of virtual events between June 5th to the 13th. NBC10 will be airing a half-hour pride special on Saturday, June 13th at 7:30pm EST. Boston Pride parade has been rescheduled to June 12, 2021. NYC Pride will also have a series of virtual events towards the end of June with tons of virtual experiences and celebrations.
- Review Your Financial Situation
It’s important to get a realistic picture of your assets to ensure you have the most options to make the best decisions. As we age, insurance requirements, healthcare needs, living situations, and legal documents are oftentimes changing. Meet with your financial advisor to review your options and secure all that is necessary for your future needs.
Providing advocacy-oriented financial planning with pride for 30 years
Treece Financial Group, led by LGBTQ-advocate David Treece, shares your values, and has the experience and expertise to address the concerns of LGBTQ individuals, couples, and families when it comes to financial planning. Our approach is welcoming and inclusive—in contrast to the perception many people have that the financial industry is conservative and unwelcoming .
It is through the work we do every day that makes a big difference in empowering LGBTQ individuals to strengthen their voice about their financial future and express their wishes about being treated with dignity and respect.
We also understand the amount of time and attention that is needed dealing with issues in relation to aging. We are dedicated to assisting with establishing caregiving services, long-term care, working with experts in identifying assisted living facilities, assisting with the physical move to a facility, retro-fitting housing to stay at home, planning for death, and dealing with dementia and other health-related issues.
Turn to us to ensure you have the resources you need to continue living out loud and proud! Give David a call at 305-751-8855 or email firstname.lastname@example.org