NEW YORK - Services and Advocacy for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual & Transgender Elders (SAGE) will hold its first national conference created by and for LGBT older adults through November 13, 2010 at the CUNY Graduate Center in New York City. “The Future of Aging Is in Our Hands” will bring together hundreds of older adults from around the country to explore issues such as activism, financial security, health, ageism, and more.
“SAGE is proud to host a historic conference where LGBT older adults are shaping and leading the advocacy agenda on their own lives,” said Michael Adams, executive director of SAGE. “Planning this conference with LGBT elders ensures that attendees will walk away from the conference with the tools and information they need to advocate on their own behalf and continue reshaping the aging agenda in communities across the country.”
Plenary sessions and workshops will cover topics such as reforming public policies to address the inequities that harm LGBT older adults; tackling ageism within and outside the LGBT community; the unique challenges of caregiving for the loved ones of LGBT elders; overcoming the mental and physical challenges of aging; and achieving financial and legal security when discrimination is rampant among LGBT older adults and their loved ones. Workshops will be led in large part by members of the conference planning committee and SAGE Advocates—a group of LGBT older adults who work with SAGE to advocate for improved city and state public policies that affect the LGBT community.
Notable speakers at the conference include:
• Lilliam Barrios-Paoli, Commissioner, NYC Department for the Aging
• Mandy Carter, Co-Founder, National Black Justice Coalition (NBJC)
• Greg Case, Director of the Office of Home and Community-Based Services, Administration on Aging
• Patty L. Collins, Cherokee-Choctaw, Traditional Healer & Documentary Filmmaker
• Amber Hollibaugh, longtime LGBT and economic justice advocate and current co-executive director of Queers for Economic Justice
• Jonathan Ned Katz, Author, Activist and Co-Director of OutHistory.org
• Robert Nakatani, Senior Strategist, ACLU’s LGBT & AIDS Project
• José Martin Garcia Orduña, Manhattan HIV CARE Network Coordinator, Union Settlement Association
• Barbara Satin, Institute for Welcoming Resources & Faith Work Associate, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force
Other conference highlights include an opportunity for LGBT older adults to inform the 2011 reauthorization of the Older Americans Act; clinics staffed by professionals who will advise LGBT elders on legal, financial, and housing issues; and a special screening of the award-winning documentary Edie & Thea: A Very Long Engagement followed by a Q&A with Edie Windsor and the film makers.
Services & Advocacy for GLBT Elders (SAGE) is the world’s largest and oldest organization dedicated to improving the lives of LGBT older adults. SAGE has pioneered programs and services for the aging LGBT community, provided technical assistance and training to expand opportunities for LGBT older people across the country, and provided a national voice on LGBT aging issues. In 2005, SAGE became the first official LGBT delegate at the White House Conference on Aging. In 2010, SAGE was awarded a three-year $900,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the Administration on Aging to establish the nation's only National Resource Center on LGBT Aging.