Do you know the right questions to ask when considering selecting long-term care?
SAGE, the world’s largest and oldest organization dedicated to improving the lives of older LGBTQ+ people, and the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Foundation, the educational arm of the nation’s largest LGBTQ+ civil rights organization, unveiled a first-of-its-kind consumer guide for LGBTQ+ elders to find safe, affirming long-term care communities. This guide, an extension of the Long-Term Care Equality Index (LEI), aims to inform aging members of the LGBTQ+ community and their loved ones what questions they should ask and what they should look for when they begin the process of selecting a long-term care community that is right for them or a loved one.
“We all deserve to feel safe and have our needs met when seeking care. 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,” said Jay Brown, Human Rights Campaign Senior Vice President for Programs, Research and Training. “This resource is rooted in research and a dedicated partnership between the Human Rights Campaign Foundation and SAGE.”
“We hear far too many stories about LGBTQ+ elders who face discrimination and mistreatment in long-term care. 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,” said SAGE CEO Michael Adams. “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.”
Access to LGBTQ+ affirming long-term care communities is an issue that will grow in importance as more out LGBTQ+ elders seek support. To help combat this issue, the Human Rights Campaign Foundation and SAGE developed the Long-Term Care Equality Index. The LEI sets the first national standards for inclusive LGBTQ+ policies and practices for senior housing and residential long-term care communities. The LEI team supports participating communities through a self-assessment process, a comprehensive LEI resource guide of best practices and educational presentations.
The consumer guide is a comprehensive resource containing information on questions LGBTQ+ individuals should ask when searching for a long-term care community. Topics covered include LGBTQ+-welcoming policies, practices, and environments. Additionally, the guide includes a variety of examples and resources to assist in the search for an LGBTQ+ inclusive facility. At its core, the guide aims to both inform and ease the process of identifying inclusive long-term care for aging members of the LGBTQ+ community and their loved ones.
For more information about HRC and SAGE’s Long-Term Care Equality Index, please visit thelei.org.