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Addiction Recovery Resources for LGBT+

Part of being a productive professional employee or entrepreneur is being healthy. Due to many factors addiction is a larger problem in the gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, queer community. Getting help is a strong and brave thing to do for yourself.

AllTreatment (Locator Directory)

All Treatment - LGBTQIA-Friendly-Alcohol-and-Drug-Rehab-Centers Gay Lesbian Transgender Bisexual Queer

Local LGBTQIA Friendly Rehab Locator (Locator Directory)

The LGBTQIA+ community faces a unique and specific set of circumstances that can lead to a variety of long-term psychological health issues. Lack of acceptance from their loved ones, constant anxiety over social judgment, depression stemming from the internalization of the toxic and misinformed perceptions of others, fear of bodily harm, and multiple other factors can take a tremendous emotional toll and often lead members of the community to self-medicate with drugs and alcohol. As the addiction treatment community and the world at large gain a better understanding of the distinct struggles that this population faces, more and more facilities are offering LGBTQIA+-friendly alcohol and drug rehab centers.

Detoxes (Locator Directory)

Detoxes LGBTQ Drug Alchol Addiction Recovery Guide Center Locator Recourse Guide Gay Lesbian Transgender Bisexual Queer Professional Entrepreneur

Note: They have a page about LGBTQ and addiction yet was not able to search using LGBTQ as a search criteria. It is location based only as much as we could tell.

LGBTQ Friendly Drug and Alcohol Detox Near Me (Locator Directory)

Members of the LGBTQ+ (lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, transgender, queer) are nearly three times as likely as their straight peers to use a controlled substance. For example, 25% of LGBTQ+s drink alcohol, while 5-10% of the general population does. We’ll discuss in this report, the unique situations that drive LGBTQ+ members to a greater increased risk for substance abuse. We’ll also discuss some of the drugs prominent in this population and their specific harms.

Defining Wellness - LGBTQ Luxury Drug and Alcohol Addiction Recovery Program - LGBT Professionals Entrepreneurs Gay Lesbian Transgender Queer

LGBTQ Friendly Luxury Dual Diagnosis Drug Rehab

Defining Wellness Centers is a true labor of love. Wellness, mental health, and addiction treatment are what my wife, Robin, and I are passionate about and it is truly our life’s work. We believe so much in what we’re doing and the care we’re providing and we’ve put our heart and soul into developing an innovative treatment program with proven, evidence-based therapeutic techniques and cutting-edge biotechnological modalities.

Serving our clients is our mission, and Defining Wellness Centers provides a nonjudgmental, positive environment that encourages hope, enlightenment, healing, wellness, and freedom.

Agape LGBTQ Friendly Drug Alcohol Addiction Recovery Center Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Queer Professionals Entrepreneurs
Located in Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Drug & Alcohol Rehab IOP in Fort Lauderdale

Note: No direct mention on LGBTQ specifically, yet a potential rehab service offering in Fort Lauderdale, an LGBTQ capital.

Agape’s rehabilitation center in Fort Lauderdale for substance abuse embraces a universal, unconditional love that transcends, that serves regardless of circumstances. We provide individuals all over the country with the opportunity to achieve the gift of lasting sobriety. Our evidence-driven therapy and counseling methods are based on a belief that each and every individual is worth living a joyous and rewarding life free from the bondage of addiction. With a comprehensive treatment plan that includes multiple levels of care (partial hospitalization, intensive outpatient, outpatient) you or your loved one can rest assured that our addiction specialists will get to the underlying root causes of substance abuse for complete inner healing. We offer a full spectrum of mental health services guided by a team of world-class addiction specialists. Experience the difference with AGAPE Treatment Center of South Florida: a twelve-step rehabilitation program created solely for the purpose of saving lives from the grip of chemical dependency and alcoholism.

Treatment-Centers.net (Locator Directory)

Note: Locator Directory – a Search for LGBT resulted in no findings but still a resource.

Drug Rehabs That Treat Sexual Abuse Near Me

Sexual abuse, whether direct physical assault or pattern of ongoing behavioral harassment, can precipitate a variety of ongoing mental health and quality-of-life issues from which it can be tremendously difficult to recover. One of these issues is the onset of substance use disorder (SUD). Drug and alcohol use can often become a coping mechanism for victims of all types of sexual assault, including those who suffer sudden and violent rape or attempted sexual assault; those who are sexually molested as children; and those who are consistently sexually objectified in various areas of their lives. Understanding the scope of sexual violence and its relationship to corresponding SUD can better influence treatment protocols and lead to more intuitive care.

Choices Rehab Drug Alchol Addiction Recovery

Note: No direct mention on LGBTQ specifically, yet a potential rehab service offering.

Drug And Alcohol Rehab That Accepts Cigna Insurance in Indiana

At Choices Recovery, we understand the urgency of providing effective treatment for those individuals who are struggling with addictions to drugs or alcohol. Our goal is to help addiction sufferers reverse the physical and emotional damages so they can resume their place in society and enjoy productive, happy lives.

To help our clients in every way possible, we have created a treatment program that aims to address every contributing factor in the addiction. None of our clients are forced to participate in a treatment plan they are not comfortable with. Regardless of the drug involved, the severity of the addiction, or the physical and mental health of the individual, we have a program that will bring about a lasting recovery.

This is a new and growing resource page. Do you know of any others that should be listed? Comment or send us a message to have additional resources added.

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Understanding Gender Identity and Expression 101

Understanding gender identity and expression to support education in LGBTQ corporate equality for a welcoming workplace.

Most people when they hear – LGBTQ – they think of it is a group of individuals who are attracted to members of the same sex to some degree. Interestingly, most don’t realize that the “T” does not directly relate to a person’s sexual attraction at all. It is separate and refers to a person’s sense of gender. Inside, do they feel like a male or female or even somewhere in between the two. This is referred to as gender identity.

Before the 19th century, the terms gender and sex were interchangeable. It was believed was what you physically appeared as at birth was cut and dry. Binary. Female or male from birth in body, mind, and soul.

Around 1925, a sexologist named Magnus Hirschfeld from Germany published an article. In it, he described for the first time the difference between the sexual desire for persons of the same gender compared to a deep desire to live and/or dress as the opposite gender because it matches how you feel and view yourself.

In the 1950s the concepts and theories about gender, gender roles, and gender identity were introduced and defined in the psychological literature. Psychologists, such as Jerome Kagan and John Money, initially believed that gender identity was simply a degree a person felt feminine or masculine coupled with the ability to live openly and freely as who they are supporting a secure sense of self.

From around 1965 through 1985 researchers such as Sandra Bem, Richard Green, Harry Benjamin, and, Robert Stoller furthered the understanding of gender and gender identity. Green, Benjamin, and Stoller pioneered gender identity clinics, as well as gender-related medical and surgical treatments.

The ongoing work of these and other pioneer researchers in the field of gender identity development raised awareness that gender is not exclusively determined by assigned sex at birth but determined by a person’s sense, belief, and the ultimate expression of self.

A bit more to understand

The term transgender is an overall term for people whose gender identity, expression and/or behavior is different from those typically associated with their assigned sex at birth. Since the 1990s, transgender has also been used to describe:

  • transsexuals
  • crossdressers
  • androgynous people
  • genderqueers
  • gender non-conforming people

Transgender men had or have female body parts; however, they may identify and/or express themselves as male. Female to male or F2M.

Transgender women had or have male body parts; however, they may identify and/or express themselves as female. Male to female or M2F.

Research shows that gender identity, in many cases, is independent of sexual orientation.

  • Androphilic are people that were born with a male body, have a female gender identity, and are attracted to men. My understanding is like this:
    • M2F Straight
    • F2M Straight.
  • Gynephilia is people that were born with a male body, have a female gender and are attracted to women. My understanding is like this:
    • M2F Lesbian
    • F2M Gay
  • Cis-Gender, is a person who feels that how they mentally identify matches their physical body.
    • Cis-male
    • Cis-female

See: List of LGBTQ+ terms with definitions

Marketors, employers, prevention specialists, and healthcare providers should be aware that beliefs impact almost all areas of a person’s life, their feeling of accepted and being welcomed.

Think about not only your own beliefs and attitudes but how can you impact your place of business, your working environment, policies, benefits. How can you make your company, business, institution more accessible and in some cases safe?

If in my attempts to simplify for the sake of understanding a very complex field I’m happy to be constructively corrected and happy to edit the content if necessary. Please add your comments below.

I’ve already written about the Surrey University study demonstrating a clear bias against persons who are perceived as LGBT in the hiring process, promotions, and salary. Added to the stress of work anyone faces, adds being verbally harassed or worse not just at work but everywhere.

At this point, it’s – Duh!. In order to understand you have to get to know.

If you work for a company if not already happening, suggest or start social gatherings to get to know others out of the work environment. Maybe host a company talent show or other activities that foster interaction embracing the differences. The biggest is connect with others and be open and willing to give everyone an opportunity to shine. Listen carefully. Do you have interests in common? Do you hear an opportunity to partner on a project to help each other and maybe others in the company or community?

OutBüro’s Gender Identity and Expression Model

The concept of gender identity and expression graphic to help explain the concepts is not new. Hower, OutBüro decided to create our own with some modifications to past models to help further clarify the concepts.

Most models to date have a scale with feminine on one end of a spectrum and masculine on the opposite. We believe that having them separately represented is more accurate was of thinking and helps to better understand.

Meet Chris – the OutBüro Gender Identity and Expression Model

In the diagram below consider the lines noting masculine and feminine as each independent sliding scales from 0 to 100%.

Gender Idendity Attraction Sex Express Model - OutBuro - LGBTQ Corporate Equality Employer Branding Reviews Ratings Gay Lesbian Transgender

Gender Identity

Gender Identity is how you, in your head, experience and define your gender, based on how much you align (or don’t align) with what you understand the options for gender to be. Common associations: personality traits, jobs, hobbies, likes, dislikes, roles, expectations

Gender Expression

Gender Expression is how you present gender (through your actions, clothing, and demeanor, to name a few), and how those presentations are viewed based on social expectations. Common associations: style, grooming, clothing, mannerisms, affect, appearance, hair, make-up

Anatomical Sex

Anatomical Sex is the physical traits you’re born with or develop that we think of as “sex characteristics,” as well as the sex you are assigned at birth. Common associations: body hair, chest, hips, shoulders, hormones penis, vulva, chromosomes, voice pitch

Attraction

Attraction is how you find yourself feeling drawn (or not drawn) to some other people, in sexual, romantic, and/or other ways (often categorized within gender).

Incarcerated Gang Raped Abused Where Justice Ends Addiction Recovery Resources for LGBTQ CommunityLGBT Employees Rate Employer Review Company Employee Branding OutBuro - Corporate Workplace Equality Gay Lesbian Queer Diversity Inclusion

Incarcerated. Gang Raped. Abused. Tortured. Future?

Since recently relocating to the Fort Lauderdale area I have begun to get to know many wonderful people. A new friend, Scott Bowker, invited me the April 29th, Fort Lauderdale premier of the new documentary titled “Where Justice Ends: Where punishment for gender identity is cruel but not unusual.” Shown at the historic Classic Gateway Theater.

Produced by George Zuber, President of Buddha Dog Productions also based in Fort Lauderdale. The documentary was simply captivating and alarming as 6 transgender women share their stories of being incarcerated. Their stories are a collective of mental and physical abuse, torture, blatant denial of safety, and medical care. Some live quietly and others have the amazing perseverance to be instruments of change. Some struggling with how to move on at so many levels from dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and trying to find and/or build a solid steady legal income.

Along with anther 16 interviewees, the 6 women featured are:

More information on them here.

Human Rights Watch involvement

Attending the event was Carine Chehad, Miami Director, Human Rights Watch. Chehad stated that the Human Rights Watch has been around for quite some time but that once this administration started showing itself that the Human Rights Watch started to focus on the United States. She further stated that it is now one of the Human Rights Watch largest operation.

How I identified

Although I’m a cis-gender gay male, I could identify in several not pleasent ways. That comonality however helped me understand and empathize with these women. Although right now single in Wilton Manors, Florida, one of the gay capitals of the USA, my life has taken me all over the US and some of Europe. During those travels while just trying to not live in my hotel room due to business travels, I would go out for conversation.

On more than one occasion I’ve been raped by one and more than one guy. I was drunk and/or drugged. I was not completely coherent to give consent or purposely drugged to render me not capable of consent for fighting back.

I have a safety word and have for years due to this. If I say it, and it’s not honored prepare, if I am mentally able and physically able, to receive a stern punch in the nose with an upward motion or short hard chop to the throat.

I cannot imagine the additional issues of being incarcerated, trapped, completely aware, coherent of those actions.

After my divorce of a 17-year relationship almost 2 years ago I got into a bit of trouble. I was used to having a cocktail or 3 at home – not out. I got DUI’s. Yes. Two. Luckily my seconds was in Pinellas County with a Veterans Program. I was fortunate. I didn’t have those experiences in Pinellas or Polk County jails. But the potential was there. I was scared, frighted, came close to a knockdown twice. I cannot fathom the amount of fear, anguish and terror these women must have felt and gone through.

How Those Affected Move Forward

I’m not attempting to diminish by any stretch. Everyone has different ways of dealing with trauma. Most don’t get the mental or physical health treatment they need. It’s not what has been done to us that defines us. It’s what we do with it. It’s how much do we allow it to eat us up or surrender and focus on the positive in life and what you can do with it.

That’s one of the things that stuck with me is how difficult it is not only here in the United States but around the world to get good meaningful employment as a transgender. A few months ago I introduced you to Kinner – Empowering Lives and Dignity with Every Bottle of Water in India. Also how LGBT discrimination leads to limited healthcare for many. In the US workplace, men are penalized for not holding traditional masculine norms. Coupling that with often family abandonment, friends lost due to lack of understanding and lots of other complicated issues adding going to a local jail or prison adds additional burdens of trying to build a healthy, full and prosperous life of meaning and dignity.

For those finding it difficult to find employment maybe start your own business or organization. Have a purpose while doing other jobs if necessary until your passion becomes a fully financially supporting enterprise. Find some resources here on OutBüro.

Realize your value in your experiences. Value yourself and what you have to offer. Be true to yourself first, then others. Believe in yourself and take actions toward your vision. When you do; magic and miracle happen.

Wishing you all the best and if there’s anything I can do and have the ability to do via myself or with others let me know.

Go Ahead Touch Yourself Testicular Cancer Awarness Foundation - LGBT Employees Rate Employer Review Company Employee Branding OutBuro - Corporate Workplace Equality Gay Lesbian Queer Diversity Inclusion

Go ahead. Touch yourself.

Nuts, balls, gonads, junk, yes we’re talking about guy’s testicles. As a gay guy, I like mine and others.


Hunter Lee McGhee – Testicular cancer victim 2018

April is Testicular Cancer awareness month. Since moving to Fort Lauderdale I’ve been meeting some great people. One of which Renee Platiau. Renee lost her 19-year-old son, Hunter Lee McGhee, just 8 months ago to testicular cancer. One day he was coughing up blood. Renee took him to the emergency room where he was diagnosed with stage 4 testicular cancer. Because he didn’t know what to look for and never talked about it, it had the opportunity to advance spreading to his lungs and lymph nodes.

Had Hunter known the signs and felt comfortable talking about his balls with her, a teacher, a friend or a sexual partner he might still be living a healthy life.

It’s never easy when you lose a family member, but to watch your child get sicker and sicker when if it were caught earlier it may have been curable. His chances would have been so much greater.

Renee is doing her best to cope with the loss of her son. She has started to network with local school district health and sex education teachers as well as youth sporting groups to get the word out. She has obtained a first small shipment of literature including a wallet-sized pocket guide for testicular self-exam title “Go Ahead, Touch Yourself” from the Testicular Cancer Awareness Foundation.

The Testicular Cancer Awareness Foundation (TCAF) provides

  • Literature
  • Online information
  • Resources
  • Financial Aid
  • Online Support Community
  • … and so much more

Signs & symptoms

According to the TCAF, in most cases, early stages of testicular cancer present themselves in a completely painless manner. The early warning signs and symptoms are:

  • A lump of any size on the testicle
  • A dull ache or sense of pressure in the lower abdomen or back
  • Enlargement of the testicle, change in shape, size or any irregularities
  • Pain or discomfort in the scrotum or testicle
  • A feeling of heaviness or fullness in the scrotum
  • Enlargement or tenderness of the breasts due to elevated hormone levels

Check out their website along with their self-exam instructions.

  • Leading cancer in men ages 15-44
  • Catching it early greatly increases chances of beating it
  • In the United States alone, every hour and male is diagnosed
  • Every day a life is lost

Check yourself and your sexual partner(s). Renee says, “Everyone should be aware.”

OutBuro Care Plan Medical health Savings Plan LGBT GLBT Gay Lesbian Bisexual Transgender Queer Prenegotiated Healcare costs Cash Discounts

Healthcare Medical Savings Plans for the LGBT Community

March 15, 2019

Officially launched today, OutBüro Care+Plan is a pre-negotiated healthcare discount savings plan leveraging trusted national networks of service providers. It is unique in that it is specifically targeting the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) community. Believed to be the first of it’s kind.

OutBüro Care+Plans are for individuals, couples, and families residing in the United States regardless of citizenship status. It has opportunities for independent entrepreneur, small business owners and non-profits with a member base. OutBüro Care+Plans is focused on the LGBTQ community, however it’s not exclusive – we aren’t meanies. We’d welcome anyone to the OutBüro Care+Plans who meet the general plan requirements.

OutBüro Care+Plan is a result of the partnership between OutBüro and Atlas Benefits.

Why focus on the LGBTQ community?

There are other similar plans out there that anyone may use. OutBüro’s focuses its content and service on the LGBTQ professional and entrepreneur community. It is difficult or impossible to be your best on the job or tending to your client as an LGBTQ entrepreneur when you have health concerns. Your sinuses may be killing you, or you met a hot guy and all you can think about is your erectile dysfunction.

“When AtlasCare management reached out to me, within our first call my interest was high. I had already written articles based on studies including lack of access and high health risk LGBTQ people face,” Velco states.

An LGBTQ person who has a fear of going to medical facilities due to past negative experiences, for many things may utilize the medicine doctor as part of the plan, stop by a lab if ordered, and have their prescription mailed or picked up locally. But anyone on the OutBüro Care+Plan can typically save time and money leveraging the Telemedicine option.

Discounted services through nationwide networks

  • Doctor Visits
  • Patent Advocacy
  • Hospitalization
  • Prescriptions
  • Laboratory
  • MRI & Imaging
  • Dermatology
  • Dental
  • Vision
  • Hearing
  • Chiropractic
  • Diabetic
  • Telemedicine

For more information visit https://www.outburo.com/outburo-careplans-info-sign-up

Gay Male couple OutBuro Care Plan Medical Savings Plan Prenegotiated Healcare Costs Cash Discounts

Americans dropping health insurance

Recent reports indicate that a large number of persons residing in the United States don’t have health insurance or are considering dropping it in 2019. This is partially in part due to the Affordable Care Act (ACA) mandate repeal that removed penalizes Americans on federal taxes. LGBTQ persons are part of that group although we have not found any study quantifying that to date.

Health insurance as emergency only plan

Velco states, “I personally know many people who have health insurance but due to the every rising costs they can only afford a plan with a very high annual deductible, say $5,000. They treat their health insurance as an emergency only plan.

They could leverage the OutBüro Care+Plan for out of pocket cash payment discounts that can still count toward the health insurance annual deductible. Why pay full walk-in or insurance billing rates when you are trying to reach your high heath insurance annual deductible if under normal routine care you likely won’t reach it?

Undocumented immigrants

There are LGBTQ immigrants and likely some are undocumented too. For most in that status it can be challenging to impossible to even get health insurance no matter how much they are willing to pay. The OutBüro Care+Plan is not an insurance plan, but it can help reduce costs.

My own proof

Velco continues, “As I learned more I quickly added up my own health care cost I racked up over the past 3 months and found that had I had this plan, I would have used the exact same vendors and would have saved enough to have covered a full year of cost of the plan. I thought that if this makes no brainier sense to me it’s going to hit home with others.”

Gay Bisexual Men Sexually transmitted diseases - They happen - LGBT Employees Rate Employer Review Company Employee Branding OutBuro - Corporate Workplace Equality Gay Lesbian Queer Diversity Inclusion

Gay/Bi Men: Sexually transmitted diseases – They happen

The effectiveness of safer sex practices for reducing the rate of HIV infection is one of the gay community’s great success stories. Safer sex is effective in reducing the risk of receiving and transmitting HIV. However, studies over the last few years have demonstrated the return of many unsafe sex practices.

As a gay man who was a teenager when HIV/AIDS became prominent, it has always been a looming thought. Medicines and treatments have come so far and luckily today it’s not an instant death sentence it once was. Since my divorce almost two years ago I’ve started to use PrEP to help prevent getting infected with HIV. Over my life so far, I’ve had a couple minor sexually transmitted diseases. PrEP does not prevent or lessen your chances of acquiring sexually transmitted diseases beyond HIV.

Currently not only do I get the required testing every three months while taking PrEP, but I also get tested for every sexually transmitted disease. Getting the blood work done every three months is a little nerve racking knowing I’m at high risk, very active and will admit to rarely using condoms. I’ve recently moved to Fort Lauderdale where all I’ll say is OMG – it’s off the chain.

Why am I sharing this with you? Because I’ve heard from so many guys that they don’t take PrEP, don’t use condoms and go from vanilla to piggy in two blinks of an eye.

For most, it comes down to:

  • Feeling uncomfortable talking about PrEP and sexually transmitted diseases with their current primary doctor.
  • Lack of funds to pay for co-pays.
  • Not having health insurance to cover a good portion of the costs.
  • Their health insurance deductible very high and it’s a cost issue to reach full deductible in a year timeframe.
  • Lack of knowledge or apathy.

An Option for Access to Healthcare

Wouldn’t it be great to be able to pick up your phone, or sit at your computer and discuss your health concerns with a Registered Nurse and/or Doctor who can diagnose, order lab testing and prescribe medication all at pre-negotiated low rates? Find out more about the OutBüro Care+Plan.

Other Sexually Transmitted Diseases

Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) occur at a high rate among sexually active gay men. Most known STD infections have easy and effective treatments available (e.g., syphilis, gonorrhea, chlamydia, pubic lice, anal papilloma)

HPV The human papillomavirus (HPV), which causes anal and genital warts, is often downplayed as an unsightly inconvenience. However, HPV infections may play a role in the increased rates of anal cancers among gay men. Gay and bisexual men are estimated to be 17 times more likely to develop anal cancer than heterosexual men. While treatments for HPV do exist, recurrences of the warts and the rate at which the infection can be spread between partners are very high. Certain populations (including gay and bisexual men, people with weak immune systems, and people with HIV/AIDS) are also at higher risk for some HPV-related health problems. There is no doubt that safer sex reduces the risk of STDs; prevention of these infections through safer sex is key.

LGBTQ Seniors - The Merion - Illinois First SAGECare Certified Elder Housing LGBT Employees Rate Employer Review Company Employee Branding OutBuro - Corporate Workplace Equality Gay Lesbian Queer Diversity Inclusion

LGBTQ Seniors – The Merion – Illinois First SAGECare Certified Elder Housing

The Merion - OutBuro Gay Professional Networking LGBT Business News Employer Reviews Information Queer Community Lesbian Entrepreneuer GLBT Job Board PostingsNestled three short blocks away from Lake Michigan in downtown Evanston, the Nestled three short blocks away from Lake Michigan in downtown Evanston, the Merion offers older adults a place to live and thrive while also meeting their needs as they age.

According to its website, the Merion is “a small community of diverse individuals where you are a name, and not just a number. A place to grow intellectually and socially, helped by inventive programming and a fantastic social community where everyone takes care of one another. It is a place for people who desire a simpler, yet engaging lifestyle supported by an uncomplicated rental plan where residents and staff celebrate culture, learning, diversity and inclusivity and embrace confidence-inspiring, easily accessible and comprehensive health services.”

Recently, the Merion became the first Illinois senior living community to earn a SAGECare credential. It joins the almost 300 senior care providers and organizations nationwide to receive this credential from SAGE ( Services and Advocacy for LGBT Elders ), the nation’s largest advocacy and services organization for LGBT elders.

SAGE Advocacy & Services for LGBT ElderThe credential required that the Merion’s upper management staff complete a four-hour intensive LGBT cultural competency training program. Caregivers and team members completed one-hour in-person training, and all management and staff members will receive ongoing training and support.

Training topics included the needs of LGBT seniors, tools to reduce and respond to bias behavior and an overview of federal protections. The Merion subsequently made changes to its policies and intake forms to be more inclusive.

What spurred the Merion’s leadership staff to get the SAGECare credential was a story they read about Marsha Wetzel, a lesbian who was physically attacked and verbally harassed with anti-LGBT comments at Glen St. Andrew Living Community in Niles, where she had lived for 15 months. Wetzel sued the facility and, after the trial court dismissed her claim, the U.S. 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in her favor; now the case has been returned to the lower court.

“We are honored to receive the Platinum SAGECare credential, which means 80 percent of our entire staff attended the training,” said the Merion’s marketing coordinator and community outreach manager, RJ Alban. “Most importantly, it is the right thing to do, and we wanted to make sure people who live or work at the Merion never feel discriminated against. Older adults who want the lifestyle and wellness benefits from a senior living community that provide high quality services, amenities and care should feel welcome, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. Residents’ LGBT kids, friends and extended family should feel welcome in our community as well. We have a saying: ‘The More, the Merion,’ and we try to live it every day.”

The Merion - OutBuro Gay Professional Networking LGBT Business News Employer Reviews Information Queer Community Lesbian Entrepreneuer GLBT Job Board Postings

“We are proud to be the first in the state to earn this distinction, to demonstrate our inclusive environment and dedication to serve a growing population of older adults,” added General Manager Vicki Botefuhr. “No one should be discriminated against or feel isolated like so many LGBT seniors unfortunately do. Our staff is trained to foster a supportive environment.”

“We at SAGE could not be more pleased about The Merion receiving their Platinum SAGECare Credential,” said SAGECare CEO Tim Johnston. “The leadership at the Merion strongly believes that all of their residents should receive the highest standard of care, and that includes LGBT seniors, and this credential helps them communicate that commitment to the community.”

According to SAGE, conservative estimates suggest both that there are three million LGBT people aged 55 and older and that the number will double in the next two decades as the Baby Boomers retire. Of this number, approximately 56,000 LGBT adults 45 and older live in Chicago.

Currently many seniors, and especially LGBT seniors, have opted to age in-place rather than move to a senior living facility due to many factors. According to MerionCares Manager and Social Worker Anne Ryan, that is detrimental to their physical and intellectual wellness because they do not experience enough social interaction.

“Social wellness means connecting with others, sharing experiences and opportunities to interact,” said Ryan. “LGBT seniors who age-in-place experience higher rates of isolation and do not get the social activity they need. Doctors say isolation is a killer. We have heard numerous times it is as dangerous as long-term smoking. It is sad to see older adults who are unable to experience this key dimension of wellness.

“Studies have shown that people in a community like ours live an average of two good years longer than their homebound counterparts. LGBT elders are more likely to not have children, more likely to be supported by friends who are age-peers, and their support networks and social wellness can evaporate very rapidly in their golden years.”

One of the Merion’s lesbian residents, Judith ( who has asked that her last name not be disclosed ), is an 80-year-old retired physical therapist.

“I was married to a man for 20 years and when I divorced him and came out, I felt as if I had been released from a jail I did not know I had been keeping myself in,” said Judith. “I did not want to follow someone else’s script for my life.”

Judith said the idea to live at the Merion was her daughter-in-law’s, and at first she was not sold on living there. After visiting the facility multiple times, however, she felt like it was the right community for her.

“I was tired of cooking for myself and feeling isolated,” said Judith. “I needed a place like the Merion and I am glad I am here. I have been here for four months and my son comes to visit me often. I have found friends and a wonderful, active life here.”

In terms of living in an LGBT-inclusive community, Judith said it has been liberating and caused her to open up about her life to more people. Her favorite things to do at the Merion are Barbara Meyer’s integrated movement class, music classes and going to the pool.

“This change has been a feather in my cap, and I feel safer in this community than any other place I have lived,” said Judith. “I would recommend the Merion in a heartbeat. I take the best walks by the lake and through Northwestern University. I feel safe, and the people and the food are so good. Make the change before you feel like you are ready, and while you can enjoy it.”

“At the Merion, we consistently host educational events on senior health and wellness topics, as well as LGBT-related topics,” said Ryan. “We have some planned for this fall and welcome you to attend.”

See MerionEvanston.com or call 847-570-7815 for more information.

offers older adults a place to live and thrive while also meeting their needs as they age.

According to its website, the Merion is “a small community of diverse individuals where you are a name, and not just a number. A place to grow intellectually and socially, helped by inventive programming and a fantastic social community where everyone takes care of one another. It is a place for people who desire a simpler, yet engaging lifestyle supported by an uncomplicated rental plan where residents and staff celebrate culture, learning, diversity and inclusivity and embrace confidence-inspiring, easily accessible and comprehensive health services.”

Recently, the Merion became the first Illinois senior living community to earn a SAGECare credential. It joins the almost 300 senior care providers and organizations nationwide to receive this credential from SAGE ( Services and Advocacy for LGBT Elders ), the nation’s largest advocacy and services organization for LGBT elders.

The credential required that the Merion’s upper management staff complete a four-hour intensive LGBT cultural competency training program. Caregivers and team members completed one-hour in-person training, and all management and staff members will receive ongoing training and support.

Training topics included the needs of LGBT seniors, tools to reduce and respond to bias behavior and an overview of federal protections. The Merion subsequently made changes to its policies and intake forms to be more inclusive.

What spurred the Merion’s leadership staff to get the SAGECare credential was a story they read about Marsha Wetzel, a lesbian who was physically attacked and verbally harassed with anti-LGBT comments at Glen St. Andrew Living Community in Niles, where she had lived for 15 months. Wetzel sued the facility and, after the trial court dismissed her claim, the U.S. 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in her favor; now the case has been returned to the lower court.

“We are honored to receive the Platinum SAGECare credential, which means 80 percent of our entire staff attended the training,” said the Merion’s marketing coordinator and community outreach manager, RJ Alban. “Most importantly, it is the right thing to do, and we wanted to make sure people who live or work at the Merion never feel discriminated against. Older adults who want the lifestyle and wellness benefits from a senior living community that provide high quality services, amenities and care should feel welcome, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. Residents’ LGBT kids, friends and extended family should feel welcome in our community as well. We have a saying: ‘The More, the Merion,’ and we try to live it every day.”

“We are proud to be the first in the state to earn this distinction, to demonstrate our inclusive environment and dedication to serve a growing population of older adults,” added General Manager Vicki Botefuhr. “No one should be discriminated against or feel isolated like so many LGBT seniors unfortunately do. Our staff is trained to foster a supportive environment.”

“We at SAGE could not be more pleased about The Merion receiving their Platinum SAGECare Credential,” said SAGECare CEO Tim Johnston. “The leadership at the Merion strongly believes that all of their residents should receive the highest standard of care, and that includes LGBT seniors, and this credential helps them communicate that commitment to the community.”

According to SAGE, conservative estimates suggest both that there are three million LGBT people aged 55 and older and that the number will double in the next two decades as the Baby Boomers retire. Of this number, approximately 56,000 LGBT adults 45 and older live in Chicago.

Currently many seniors, and especially LGBT seniors, have opted to age in-place rather than move to a senior living facility due to many factors. According to MerionCares Manager and Social Worker Anne Ryan, that is detrimental to their physical and intellectual wellness because they do not experience enough social interaction.

“Social wellness means connecting with others, sharing experiences and opportunities to interact,” said Ryan. “LGBT seniors who age-in-place experience higher rates of isolation and do not get the social activity they need. Doctors say isolation is a killer. We have heard numerous times it is as dangerous as long-term smoking. It is sad to see older adults who are unable to experience this key dimension of wellness.

“Studies have shown that people in a community like ours live an average of two good years longer than their homebound counterparts. LGBT elders are more likely to not have children, more likely to be supported by friends who are age-peers, and their support networks and social wellness can evaporate very rapidly in their golden years.”

One of the Merion’s lesbian residents, Judith ( who has asked that her last name not be disclosed ), is an 80-year-old retired physical therapist.

“I was married to a man for 20 years and when I divorced him and came out, I felt as if I had been released from a jail I did not know I had been keeping myself in,” said Judith. “I did not want to follow someone else’s script for my life.”

Judith said the idea to live at the Merion was her daughter-in-law’s, and at first she was not sold on living there. After visiting the facility multiple times, however, she felt like it was the right community for her.

“I was tired of cooking for myself and feeling isolated,” said Judith. “I needed a place like the Merion and I am glad I am here. I have been here for four months and my son comes to visit me often. I have found friends and a wonderful, active life here.”

In terms of living in an LGBT-inclusive community, Judith said it has been liberating and caused her to open up about her life to more people. Her favorite things to do at the Merion are Barbara Meyer’s integrated movement class, music classes and going to the pool.

“This change has been a feather in my cap, and I feel safer in this community than any other place I have lived,” said Judith. “I would recommend the Merion in a heartbeat. I take the best walks by the lake and through Northwestern University. I feel safe, and the people and the food are so good. Make the change before you feel like you are ready, and while you can enjoy it.”

“At the Merion, we consistently host educational events on senior health and wellness topics, as well as LGBT-related topics,” said Ryan. “We have some planned for this fall and welcome you to attend.”

See MerionEvanston.com or call 847-570-7815 for more information.

 


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LGBTQ Discrimination Limits Access to Health Care - LGBT Employees Rate Employer Review Company Employee Branding OutBuro - Corporate Workplace Equality Gay Lesbian Queer Diversity Inclusion

LGBTQ Discrimination Limits Access to Health Care

Center for American Progress - OutBuro Gay Professional Networking LGBT Business News Employer Reviews Information Queer Community Lesbian Entrepreneuer GLBT Job Board PostingsA survey study conducted by the Center for American Progress in 2017 verified and revealed that LGBTQ people experience discrimination when seeking health care services.  Also, if they are turned away from service due to discrimination, harassment, and mistreatment LGBTQ people may have trouble finding alternative avenues for health services.  Those experiences discourage them from seeking needed care.  This data demonstrates the importance of protecting LGBTQ people from discrimination in health care.

When needing to see a doctor, whether for routine care or emergency services no one should have to consider if they will be refused service, or be subject to discrimination, harassment or be mistreated under any circumstance.  In the United States, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) addressed this concern by prohibiting insurance providers and health care facilities and professionals from discriminating.  Under the Obama administration, LGBTQ people were explicitly protected against discrimination in health care on the basis of gender identity and sexual orientation.  Since the current administration continues to attempt to dismantle the ACA leaving many to wonder how they’ll cover health costs in addition to how their now discrimination protection may be affected.

Health care discrimination endangers the lives of LGBTQ people

This endangerment happens through delays or denials of medically necessary care based on the learned prejudices and biases of the medical professional staff.

  • While at a hospital, a patient with HIV disclosed that he was gay and therefore has sex with other men.  Those who were supposed to be there to provide care refused to provide his HIV medication.
  • A transgender teenager who struggled with thoughts of suicide and followed through attempts of self-harm was subject to being repeatedly called by both genders by medical team members and discharged sooner than normal standards for no apparent reason.   Not long after the teen committed suicide.
  • An infant was turned away from a pediatrician’s office because she had same-sex parents. Half the US states, such as Michigan, lack statewide laws against LGBTQ discrimination.  However, Section 1557 of the ACA provides federal protections for LGBTQ people overriding state laws.

LGBTQ discrimination and mistreatment primary care doctor offices

Despite protections now in place, for the time being, LGBTQ people still face an alarming rate of health care discrimination, harassment, humiliation, to outright being turned away by hospitals, pharmacists, and doctors. The Center for American Progress study data outlines the types of discrimination that many LGBTQ people endure when seeking medical care.

Data below is from those gay, lesbian, bisexual, and queer (LGBQ) who responded and had visited a doctor or health care provider in the year just prior to the survey:

  • 8% indicated that a doctor or other health care provider refused to see them because of their actual or perceived sexual orientation.
  • 6% responded that a doctor or other health care provider refused to give them health care related to their actual or perceived sexual orientation.
  • 7% replied that a doctor or other health care provider refused to recognize their family, including a child or a same-sex spouse or partner.
  • 9% said that a doctor or other health care provider used harsh or abusive language when treating them.
  • 7% indicated that they experienced unwanted physical contact from a doctor or other health care provider (such as fondling, sexual assault, or rape).

Among transgender people who had visited a doctor or health care providers’ office in the past year:

  • 29% said a doctor or other health care provider refused to see them because of their actual or perceived gender identity.
  • 12% responded a doctor or other health care provider refused to give them health care related to gender transition.
  • 23% indicated doctor or other health care provider intentionally misgendered them or used the wrong name.
  • 21% replied a doctor or other health care provider used harsh or abusive language when treating them.
  • 29% indicated that they experienced unwanted physical contact from a doctor or other health care provider (such as fondling, sexual assault, or rape).

Discrimination discourages LGBTQ people from seeking health care

Discrimination, even the perceived potential for discrimination, can create anxiety and trepidation in LGBTQ people making seeking care when they need it difficult and scary.  The Center for American Progress survey data validated that past actual and the perceived potential of discrimination played a factor in discouraging or preventing a large number of LGBTQ people from seeking health care.

  • 8% of all LGBTQ people reported avoided or postponed needed medical care because of the perceived potential of being disrespected or discriminated against from health care staff.
  • Further for those who have experienced direct negative experiences in their past, the number jumped to 14%.
  • Among transgender people, 22% reported such avoidance.
  • When it came to preventative screenings such as for HIV or cholesterol, 7% of LGBTQ respondents reported avoiding or postponing care in the year prior to the survey, while 17 percent of LGBTQ respondents who had experienced discrimination that year and 19% of transgender people reporting avoidance during that period.

An earlier CAP analysis reported other findings from this survey that also indicated the effect of discrimination on LGBTQ people’s willingness to seek out health care. In that analysis, 6.7 percent of LGBTQ people reported that they avoided doctor’s offices in the past year out of fear of discrimination. This avoidance behavior is even more common among LGBTQ people who reported having experienced discrimination in the past year: 18.4 percent reported avoiding doctor’s offices to avoid discrimination, nearly seven times the rate of LGBTQ people who had not experienced discrimination in the past year, at 2.7 percent.

These Center for American Progress findings are consistent with other research. The 2015 U.S. Transgender Survey found that nearly 1 in 4 transgender people (23 percent) had avoided seeking needed health care in the past year due to fear of discrimination or mistreatment.

Finding another doctor is not an answer for all LGBTQ patients

The expansion of legislation, lawsuits, and administrative rule-making allowing for broad learned religious beliefs exemptions from providing services puts another hurdle in the way of LGBTQ people receiving medical care. For those patients that do seek medical care and are turned away by providers, alternatives may not be easily accessible depending on where they live and their travel abilities.  This concern is exacerbated by a shortage of medical providers in key areas of treatment such as mental health care and specialty services.  Not all LGBTQ people live in metro areas and the shortage of LGBTQ friendly medical providers in rural areas is common.

The Center for American Progress survey data illustrate that many LGBTQ people would face significant difficulty neding to locate an alternative provider if they were turned away by a health care provider, such as a pharmacy, hospital, community clinic or primary care provider.

  • 18% of LGBTQ people indicated it would be “very difficult” or “not possible” to find the same type of service at a different hospital.
  • 17% of LGBTQ people responded that it would be “very difficult” or “not possible” to find the same type of service at a different community health center or clinic.
  • 8% of LGBTQ people said it would be “very difficult” or “not possible” to find the same type of service at a different pharmacy.

LGBTQ people living outside of a metropolitan area report a high rate of difficulty accessing alternative services, which may be because such services could be further away and lack transportation or related costs is a hinderance.

  • 41% of nonmetro LGBTQ people responded stating it would be “very difficult” or “not possible” to find the same type of service at a different hospital.
  • 31% of nonmetro LGBTQ people indicated it would be “very difficult” or “not possible” to find the same type of service at a different community health center or clinic.
  • 17% of nonmetro LGBTQ people said it would be “very difficult” or “not possible” to find the same type of service at a different pharmacy.

Transgender people also report difficulty accessing alternatives at a high rate:

  • 31% of transgender people said it would be “very difficult” or “not possible” to find the same type of service at a different hospital.
  • 30% of transgender people responded stating it would be “very difficult” or “not possible” to find the same type of service at a different community health center or clinic.
  • 16% of transgender people indicated it would be “very difficult” or “not possible” to find the same type of service at a different pharmacy.

Where available, some LGBTQ go to a LGBT focused community health center to avoid such discrimination and many do not provide comprehensive services.  For the states that have them, such LGBT comunity health centers are normally located in large metropolian areas.  A total of 13 states—mainly those in the central United States—do not have any LGBTQ community health centers at all. On the U.S. Transgender Survey, 29 percent of respondents seeking transition-related care reported having to travel 25 miles or more to access such care.

Conclusion

Despite the importance of protecting people from discrimination in health care settings, current regulations are under attack by the current White House administration, state governments and organization based on their learned reliougous beliefs. On August 23, 2016, a group of conservative religious organizations and eight states filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), challenging the 1557 rule. They made dubious claims that the nondiscrimination protections would require doctors to provide treatment that violated their learned religious beliefs while they see and treat othe patients who don’t adhere to all the laws of their religious docturine such as adulturers and persons who where clothing of mixed fibers.

Even though numerous courts have ruled that laws such as 1557 protect LGBTQ people, in December 2016, a single federal judge issued a nationwide injunction prohibiting HHS from enforcing the 1557 rule’s prohibition on discrimination on the basis of gender identity. On May 2, 2017, the Trump-Pence administration filed a motion indicating that the 1557 rule was under review, and in August, it announced that HHS had already written a draft proposal to roll back the rule. Given the Trump-Pence administration’s record on LGBTQ issues, new regulations will likely deny the existence of protections to LGBTQ people and make equal health care access and treatment more difficult to obtain for this historically marginalized community. While the administration cannot change the protections for LGBTQ people that exist under the law, a regulatory rollback would cause fear and confusion for patients and promote discrimination by providers and insurers.

 


Are you aware of additional studies on LGBTQ healtcare that we can bring to our audience?  Contact us with a link for consideration.  Much appreciated.

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Lesbian and bisexual women at higher risk of cardiovascular problems - LGBT Employees Rate Employer Review Company Employee Branding OutBuro - Corporate Workplace Equality Gay Lesbian Queer Diversity Inclusion

Lesbian and bisexual women at higher risk of cardiovascular disease

Amercian Heart Association - OutBuro - LGBT Business News Gay Professional Networking Lesbian Entrepreneuer Business Owner Queer Community Employer Reviews Jobs GLBT 2According to recent studies by the American Heart Association, trauma, including abuse and neglect, is associated with higher cardiovascular disease risk for lesbian and bisexual women,

Sexual minority (lesbian and bisexual) women are more likely than heterosexual women to be stressed, use tobacco, binge drink and be obese. Why these cardiovascular risk factors occur more among sexual minority women isn’t clear, but some think abuse, neglect and other trauma plays a role.

Researchers studied 547 sexual minority women, measuring three forms of childhood trauma: physical abuse, sexual abuse, and parental neglect; three forms of adult trauma: physical abuse, sexual abuse, and intimate partner violence; and lifetime trauma, which was the sum of childhood and adulthood trauma. They analyzed how increasing trauma severity was associated with higher report of several cardiovascular risk factors.

Researchers found sexual minority women with increased severity of childhood, adulthood or lifetime trauma had a higher risk of posttraumatic stress disorder and a perception of less social support.

Researchers also found the studied women were:

  • 30% more likely to have anxiety if they experienced more forms of adulthood trauma.
  • 41% more likely to be depressed if they reported increased forms of childhood trauma and 22% more likely to be depressed if they had experienced more forms of lifetime trauma.
  • 44% more likely to report overeating in the past 3 months if they experienced increased forms of childhood trauma.
  • 58% more likely to have diabetes if they experienced increasing severity of childhood trauma, and lifetime trauma notably increased their risks of obesity and high blood pressure.

These findings suggest healthcare providers should screen for trauma as a cardiovascular disease risk factor in this population, according to the authors.

The research was recognized as the “Cardiovascular Stroke Nursing Best Abstract Award.”

 


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National LGBT Cancer Network Wins $2.5M Federal Award Expanding State Efforts to Combat Tobacco-Related Cancers in LGBTQ Community

National LGBT Cancer Network Wins $2.5M Federal Award Expanding State Efforts to Combat Tobacco-Related Cancers in LGBTQ Communities

The LGBT community is disproportionately affected by cancerNational LGBT Cancer Network - OutBuro Employer Reviews Rating Gay Professional Lesbian Business Networking Diversity Recruiting Jobs Company Queer Bisexual Transgender

The National LGBT Cancer Network is the newest recipient of a $2.5 million five year award from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to expand resources for their grantees serving LGBTQ people at risk for tobacco-related cancers.

“The LGBTQ communities smoke at rates significantly higher than other populations. That alone increases our cancer risks dramatically,” said Liz Margolies, the Executive Director of the National LGBT Cancer Network.

The Cancer Network’s new award will expand their NYC presence to Providence, RI, the base for their Principal Investigator, Dr. Scout. For more than a decade, Dr. Scout has led this CDC health priority at other agencies. He emphasizes that the next five years will bring a new vision for this work: “We are really looking to expand the online knowledgebase and toolbox for LGBTQ community members at risk for cancer, living with cancer, and policymakers serving us. Watch our website at www.cancer-network.org; each month we will be adding new resources, building a robust library of information and tools everyone can access.”

The CDC award leverages a trusted network of organizational members who specialize in tobacco-related cancers and/or serving LGBTQ people. The Cancer Network reports early membership commitments from a wide range of LGBTQ serving national organizations, including the Human Rights Campaign, the National LGBTQ Task Force, the Gay & Lesbian Medical Association, the Equality Federation, and more. Likewise, many states health departments and national health organizations have already signed on as members: American Cancer Society, The Truth Initiative, Association of State and Territorial Health Officers, and more. “The American Cancer Society has a longstanding commitment to addressing cancer in the LGBTQ communities. We are very excited about this new award and look forward to helping further reduce the cancer impact for this population,” said Tawana Thomas-Johnson, Vice President, Diversity and Inclusion at ACS.

Ms. Margolies added, “We are particularly excited to have members work with the state health departments, who collectively are the second largest health funder in the United States.”

The National LGBT Cancer Network works to improve the lives of LGBT cancer survivors and those at risk, through education, training, and advocacy. They recently created the most comprehensive LGBTQ cultural competency training program available, which has been used to train thousands people across the country to date. Learn more at www.cancer-network.org.

Contact: Dr. Scout Phone: 401/267-8337

Email: [email protected]

Follow us at twitter: @cancerLGBT

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