NGLTF Launches New Program on GLBT Aging & Seniors
Roberta Sklar, Director of Communications
"The graying of the GLBT community presents new challenges to
policy makers and GLBT organizations. This initiative represents a
long-term commitment to research, policy development and advocacy
to ensure that the needs of old GLBT people are addressed inside
our communities and throughout society."
—Urvashi Vaid, Director of the Policy Institute, NGLTF
The Policy Institute of the National Lesbian and Gay Task Force today announced a major new program - the Aging Initiative - aimed at ensuring the inclusion of aging gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered (GLBT) people in all aspects of policy making and social life. The Policy Institute is a think-tank dedicated to research, policy analysis, strategy development and coalition building to advance the equality of GLBT people.
"The graying of the GLBT community presents new challenges to policy makers and to GLBT organizations," said Urvashi Vaid, director of the NGLTF Policy Institute. "Current estimates put this population at more than one million people and that number will explode when large numbers of out-of-the-closet baby boomers reach retirement. This initiative makes a long-term commitment to research, policy development and advocacy to ensure that the needs of old GLBT people are addressed in our communities and throughout society."
The NGLTF Aging Initiative's overall goal is to ensure that GLBT people are a visible and conscious part of public policy frameworks and service programs that serve the elderly. The initiative also will raise consciousness about all forms of ageism within the GLBT communities. The NGLTF Policy Institute will network with scholars and activists in the fields of gerontology and social services for the aging population to develop critical research on the realities facing GLBT people. Over the next several years, NGLTF will engage in vigorous advocacy and propose collaborations among nonprofit agencies that serve and represent this population to make sure GLBT people are included in their programs.
The Policy Institute has engaged the services of the Rev. Ken South, a minister in the United Church of Christ, to develop the Aging Initiative. Rev. South is a policy advocate with 27 years of experience in social service systems and organizing. He recently stepped down as Executive Director of the AIDS National Interfaith Network (ANIN), which he ran for ten years.
The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force has worked to eliminate prejudice, violence and injustice against gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people at the local, state and national level since its inception in 1973. As part of a broader social justice movement for freedom, justice and equality, NGLTF is creating a world that respects and celebrates the diversity of human expression and identity where all people may fully participate in society.
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