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2 years of union negotiations at Mazzoni Center end in LGBTQ-inclusive benefits

2 years of union negotiations at Mazzoni Center end in LGBTQ-inclusive benefits

Laura Smythe    September 28, 2019

Two years of union negotiations drew to a close Friday at Mazzoni Center, bringing the organization’s health care workers paid leave for gender-affirming surgeries, higher wages and a Labor-Management Committee...

Mark My Words

A Ugandan bill wants the death penalty f…

Mark Segal    October 17, 2019

There are so many issues I’d love to touch on in this week’s column: The LGBT Presidential Town Hall held by CNN, family leave for LGBT couples, Log Cabin Republicans...

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Media Trail - 10/18/19

National

Media Trail - 10/18/19

PGN Staff    October 17, 2019

Transgender man shunned by Baptist college to get new name The Tennessean reported a transgender man who was shunned by his private Tennessee college after getting breast reduction surgery has now...

International News - 10/18/19

International

International News - 10/18/19

PGN Staff    October 17, 2019

Polish election: Leader says gay rights are a threat to society LGBT+ rights have become the single most significant cultural issue in Poland’s election campaign ahead of the vote Oct. 6...

Judge overturns Affordable Care Act protections for trans patients

National

Judge overturns Affordable Care Act protections for trans patients

Victoria Brownworth    October 17, 2019

On Oct. 15, a federal judge overturned an anti-discrimination provision of the Affordable Care Act, also known as ObamaCare, that protects transgender patients. The ruling stipulates that a 2016 policy...

Democrats weigh in on LGBTQ issues

National

Democrats weigh in on LGBTQ issues

Victoria Brownworth    October 17, 2019

The Equality Town Hall was held a few days before the fourth debate in Ohio on Oct.15 — where the term LGBTQ was not mentioned once in three hours by...

Diaries reveal hidden worlds

National

Diaries reveal hidden worlds

Matthew S. Bajko    October 17, 2019

“Damn, I’m going to be a gorgeous man,” Lou Sullivan wrote 40 years ago in one of his personal diaries.

2 Philly-driven studies investigate overlap in HIV, addiction treatment

Local

2 Philly-driven studies investigate overlap in HIV, addiction treatment

Laura Smythe    October 16, 2019

The National Institute on Drug Abuse, a branch of the National Institutes of Health, has awarded more than $12 million to West Philadelphia-based biomedical research group The Wistar Institute to...

OutFest celebration allegedly ends in broken jaw for trans man

Local

OutFest celebration allegedly ends in broken jaw for trans man

Laura Smythe    October 16, 2019

A trans man wearing a “Trans Lives Matter” sweatshirt was reportedly attacked inside an Old City 7-Eleven near 3rd and Market streets Sunday at 8:30 p.m. after he left OutFest...

Media Trail - 10/11/19

National

Media Trail - 10/11/19

PGN Staff    October 10, 2019

West Virginia mayor cancels appearance over author's homophobic views The Charleston Gazette-Mail reported the mayor of West Virginia's capital city has canceled her upcoming appearance at the West Virginia Book Festival...

Advocacy and action for and by LGBT

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Individuals and communities alike are working across the Commonwealth to better focus on awareness of and access to services for LGBTQ older adults and their caregivers.
The Pennsylvania Department of Aging’s October 2018 LGBTQ Aging Summit was planned to be a catalyst to connect the aging services network with the LGBTQ senior community to help drive many needed changes at the local and state levels to better address the needs of our diverse LGBTQ seniors.

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At the summit, Michael Adams, CEO of SAGE (Services and Advocacy for LGBT Elders) outlined a number of issues and shared a call to action with this statement, “Recognizing that you are advocates, and that we are all advocates, we must work together to advance the policies that improve the lives of LGBTQ older adults.” Adams went on to outline five key advocacy issues:

Pass the Fairness Act. Currently in Pennsylvania, we have a patchwork of legal protections for LGBT residents rather than a uniform anti-discrimination law. Pennsylvania is the only state in the Northeast without such a law protecting the LGBTQ community. The Fairness Act needs to pass to provide protections across the Commonwealth.

Designate LGBT older adults and those living with HIV as greatest social needs populations in the Older Americans Act. The term “greatest social need” refers to the need caused by noneconomic factors, which can include discrimination, social isolation, disproportionate poverty and health disparities, and a lack of access to culturally competent providers. Being designated “greatest social needs population” would improve access to supports and services, including needed funding.

Provide protections in long term care settings. Pennsylvania can follow the lead of Massachusetts and California in advancing an LGBT Long-Term Care Facility Residents Bill of Rights, which protects people from discrimination on basis of sexual orientation, gender identity and HIV status in long-term care settings.

Require cultural competency training for the Aging Services Network.  Pennsylvania can follow the lead of California and Massachusetts to require LGBT cultural-awareness training as part of certification for long-term care providers.

Gather Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity (SOGI) Data. Collecting SOGI data is essential to providing high quality, patient-centered care to LGBT people across their lifecycle. We understand that the Department of Aging has the ability to begin to gather data on their funded programs (i.e., through the AAA and LINK networks).

Advocacy in 2019

Advocacy is happening locally with the Mayor’s Office of LGBT Affairs and its Elder Advisory Committee, chaired by Gigi Nikpour. The committee meets monthly and has forged partnership with strong national advocacy organizations such as AARP, SAGE and CARIE (Center for Advocacy for the Rights & Interests of the Elderly). We welcome community advocates to join our efforts to advance the needs of LGBT older adults and their caregivers in Pennsylvania. For more information, please contact Gigi Nikpour via email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or the Office of LGBT Affairs at 215-686-0330.


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