It is estimated that between 3 percent and 7 percent of the United States population is Lesbian, Gay, Bi-sexual, Transgender, or Queer (LGBTQ). The estimates for older LGBTQ also varies considerably given that there is no single comprehensive site or benchmark for estimating the LGBTQ population. Unfortunately, the proposed identification question has been slated to be removed from the 2020 Census once again leaving researcher to estimate the population and their demographic attributes.
Surveying older LGBTQ is often costly and challenging given that the population is extremely diverse and some researchers only utilize two subgroups- gay or lesbian, while others may use the full range of sexual identities to include those who are gender variant. Moreover, older LGBTQ are less likely to self-identify than younger LGBTQ.
Existing data on LGBTQ illustrates that:
- about 40% or more of those in the self-reported LGBT population is 50+
- LGBTQ families are more racially and ethnically diverse than families headed by married heterosexual couples; 41% of same-sex couples with children identify as people of color compared to 34% of married different-sex couples with children
- Many LGBTQ individuals report experiencing both racial/ethnic and LGBTQ-based discrimination in housing and the workplace, negatively impacting their chances of achieving the fundamentals of housing and income security
- LGBTQ individuals are more likely to report employment insecurity, financial insecurity, are less likely than the general population to own homes and are less likely to have life insurance.
In 2017, AARP conducted a national survey of older LGBTQ Americans. Using the data from this study, this session will explore the insights of AARP member and prospective members who are 45-plus and LGBTQ. Maintaining the dignity of LGBTQ 45+ older adults in a challenging political climate is a big job, and we’ve all got to do our part as champions and allies. But what do we need to know, and where do we start? As the population ages and need for senior care and support increases, the caregiving market offers many growth opportunities but remains challenged in providing culturally competent services for LGBTQ older adults. With nearly 40 million family caregivers across America — of which 25% are millennials and about 50% are younger than 50, the need for respect and inclusion in the healthcare and housing industries will become critical in an effort to adequately address the concerns of this aging population. This dynamic, interactive session will focus on highlight innovative cross sector opportunities that offer hope to LGBT older adults in the United States and abroad.