In 2017, Tacoma Older LGBT conducted a community survey and estimated that 4,520 lesbian, gay or bisexual adults over the age of 60 and 387 transgender adults call Pierce County home. Since then, Pierce County Aging and Disability Resources (ADR) has hosted roundtable discussions seeking feedback on the needs and priorities of the older LGBTQIA+ community. New services, such as free weekly yoga classes, were developed to include older LGBTQIA+ adults in community activities.
To expand on these services, ADR has partnered with Tacoma Older LGBT to host a free aging conference for older LGBTQIA+ adults, their friends, family and allies. Aging Out Loud will be held Tuesday Sept. 24 at the McGavick Conference Center at Clover Park Technical College, located at 4500 Steilacoom Blvd. in Lakewood. Tickets must be reserved online. The conference runs from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. For closest parking, participants should enter off Lakeview Avenue Southwest onto Perimeter Street Southwest.
Attendees will hear from four panels, with various guests, who will share their expertise on LGBTQIA+ senior housing models, long-term care resources, health and mental health needs, and the basics of estate planning. A keynote presentation will be given by J. Manny Santiago, Executive Director of the Rainbow Center. There will also be presenters from the Lavender Rights Project, Pierce County AIDS Foundation, Veterans Affairs LGBT Health program, Cedar River Clinics, Aging for Life, Eldercare Consulting, OpenHouse, Capitol Hill Housing, Generations Aging with Pride, Village Hearth Cohousing, and more.
“We are very excited to be able to bring together these experts to share their knowledge with the LGBTQIA+ community in Pierce County. Our conference offers an amazing opportunity for people to learn more about issues such as affordable housing for LGBTQIA+ seniors and health care for older transgender adults are being addressed.” said Aaron Van Valkenburg, Pierce County Aging and Disability Resources manager. “We hope that the information and resources shared by our panelists will inspire even more discussion and action to meet the needs of older LGBTQIA+ adults across Pierce County.”
Aging Out Loud is free and open to the public. Continental breakfast and lunch are included. Community-based organizations interested in hosting a resource table at the conference should email Patricia@tacomaolderlgbt.org for more information.
Nellis Kim, Pierce County Aging & Disability Resources
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