Category Archives: Retired & Living

Life doesn’t end at retirement, in fact, your next chapter in life begins. Here we share stories, experiences and ideas on how to grow, discover and renew ourselves in our golden years.

CRITICAL ESSAYS ON AGING LGBT ELDERS OF COLOR

Good day all,

What a wonderful way for us to celebrate this day that is all too often overshadowed by consumer purchases of messages of love.

Here, we have added to the literature and resources concerning the lives of those who are often not considered within prevailing hegemonic notions of who we love.  (For all Morganites: Tiffany Rice, one of our doctoral candidates, contributed to this suite of articles I had the pleasure of curating.)

Our work has been posted to American Society on Agings website.

Yes we did.

I trust that this small contribution, viewable via the following links, will add dimension to the stories of People of Color Lesbian Gay Trangender and Bisexual elders in  communities.

We are part of the task of dismantling the master’s house (see Audre Lorde):

>>  Dying with Dignity: Considerations for Treating Elder Transgender People of Color

>>  Cervical Cancer in Elder Black Lesbian and Bisexual Women

>>  Reducing Isolation: A Community Engagement Service Model

>>  Reticence and Necessity: Power of Attorney and LGBT Aging Issues

>>  (Dis)parities and (In)visibilities: Shifting Perception of the Life Course of LGBT Elders of Color

Thanks All!!

Laurens

Advertisements

New SAGE Center Honors Elders

 

Black Pride New York City honored its Elders on August 16th, 2012 at the new Sage Center on 305 7th Avenue.

The  assembly of speakers came for across the city to honor the LGBT POC Elder community.  Over 75 seniors came to­gether for an evening of community, live entertainment and lunch, all generously donated.

A special tribute was paid to GRIOT Circle and its executive director, Glen-Michael Francis, who was also the keynote speaker. Glen spoke about community and the work that went into creating the Sage Innovative Center, the first city-funded LGBT Center in New York City. 

Glen also spoke to why this community center belongs to all of us, and why we as people of color should come and enjoy the activities, make sug­gestions to create programs and services that are reflective of our values and traditions, bring friends and take computer classes

Alyce Emory, the evening’s MC and program coordina­tor, said, “I am humbled and grateful to all who participated and supported!”  Minister Renair Amin was the officiant and gave the opening remarks and blessings!

 

NOTICE on MANAGED LONG TERM CARE PLAN

On June 6, 2012, the N.Y. State Department of Health released on its website copies of the first mailing that will be sent to consumers affected by the mandatory MLTC initiative.

As revealed in an Advisory Group conference call on May 31, the State is not waiting for CMS approval of its waiver amendment before starting its communications to consumers.  This letter is purportedly being mailed this week to Manhattan recipients of Personal Care Services residing below Central Park.  Here is an excerpt from the letter:

This is an important notice from the Medicaid Program. We are writing because you get home care or other long-term care services. The way you get these services will change in the next several months. To keep receiving your services, you will be required to join a Managed Long Term Care Plan.

The requirement that you must join a Plan is subject to approval by the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). You do not need to do anything at this time. This letter is to tell you what this change means to you and how it will happen.

The mailing includes a list of all MLTC plans, including MAP and PACE.  It also includes the toll-free number of the enrollment broker, NY Medicaid Choice, for consumers to call with questions about MLTC: 888-401-6582.

The mailing with be sent in English and Spanish and also includes a card in 18 languages instructing people to call the toll-free number for assistance in their language.

As far as we know, this does not change the previously proposed implementation timeline.

Valerie Bogart

Selfhelp Community Services

Black, Latino Seniors More Likely to be in Poverty in Retirement

 

 

Black and Latino seniors in the U.S. are facing a tougher time in retirement: Elder poverty rates are twice as high among these groups compared to the U.S. population as a whole, according to a new study by the University of California, Berkeley.

Some 19.4 percent of black and 19.0 percent of Latino seniors have incomes below the federal poverty line, compared to 9.4 percent for the senior population overall, according to the analysis, which is based on data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Current Population Survey and U.S. Census Bureau American Community Survey.

“Recent household surveys show that retirees of color, especially blacks and Latinos, rely more heavily on Social Security and have less access to other types of retirement income than their white counterparts,” researcher Nari Rhee of UC Berkeley’s Center for Labor Research and Education, said in a statement.

Less than one-third of employed Latinos and less than half of black workers are covered by an employer-sponsored retirement plan, a key resource in ensuring adequate retirement income.  As a result, they are disproportionately reliant on the limited income provided by Social Security, the report found.

Among retirees age 60 and older, people of color are disproportionately likely to be low-income:  For 2007-2009, 31.6 percent of blacks and 46.5 percent of Latinos were in the bottom 25 percent income group.  The “other” race category of the Census, which includes Asian/Pacific Islander and Native American populations, is also more likely to be low-income (38 percent), the report noted.

“It is critical to improve both job access and job quality — in terms of wages and benefits, including pension benefits — to improve retirement prospects for current workers,” Rhee stated.

http://laborcenter.berkeley.edu/research/retirement_in_security2012.pdf

BLACK HISTORY MONTH AT GRIOT CIRCLE

TO ENLARGE THE CALENDAR, JUST CLICK ON THE IMAGE.

TRUTH & CONSEQUENCE: Testimonials on Living with HIV

In commemoration of World AIDS Day, GRIOT Circle honors the lives of loving, inspirational and courageous souls who transitioned too soon, by passing forward the wisdom they imparted from their battle with HIV and AIDS.   Here, in their own words, we share an excerpt from the oral history project Without the Burden of this Secret The conversations on HIV/AIDS in the POC LGBT elder community today, bear many common threads to the sentiments and experiences in these interviews which occurred 20 years ago in New York City.

________________________________________________________

LOUIS GRANT  ::  OPEN & OUT

I have lost a lot of friends to AIDS.  Too often I have thought that some unnecessarily allowed themselves to succumb to the disease.  They did not fight, they were not positive [minded] they accepted the diagnosis as a statement of impeding doom.  It seems to me that we black folk have moved slower in acknowledging the impact of this disease on our community.  Our people are suffering and dying because too often we are afraid to come out to our family…to our friends at a time when we need them most.  I think it’s very important to be out in terms of being a homosexual man and as a person with AIDS.  I’m out in every context: in my home, in my work situation.  I think carrying the burden of this secret, as so many of us do, when one has AIDS it just contributes to the illness.  It dos not make sense at this point in one’s life, when one needs to grasp all the life preserves one can, to not be open and out.  For me it’s another effective survival tool.”

Louis Grant

________________________________________________________

JOE LONG  ::  SURVIVING DEMON DOCTORS

I was diagnosed with the HIV virus in 1989.  I was tested when I discovered a parotid cyst in my right cheek.  I was putting all kinds of solutions and compresses on it and it wouldn’t go down.  I finally decided to get to a doctor at New York Ear Nose and Throat.  The first thing he said to me was, “This is typical of gay fellas, why don’t you go take the test?”  Swollen glands and parotid cysts were nothing unusual, so I said I didn’t want to take the [AIDS] Test, I didn’t think that that was necessary, I wanted to see what we could do about the swelling, but he insisted.  So I did.  When I came back ten days later he told me my results were positive and to go get on AZT—as simple as that.  I asked if there was something he could do about the cyst.  He said that, I needed to find somebody who could put me on AZT.  He conferred with his partner and just left it like that. [Were they caucasian doctors?] A Jewish doctor and an East Indian doctor.  There was no pre- nor post-test counseling.  And when I asked for my records so that I could follow-up on the cyst, they directed me to the records department and said that I could take them to any doctor I’d like.  They didn’t offer to treat me any further.  So I was like in the street.”

Joe Long

________________________________________________________

No one in NY or NJ should go hungry this holiday season

Do you know where you’ll be eating your Thanksgiving dinner? Chances are, there’s a senior in New York or New Jersey who doesn’t know if they’ll be eating dinner at all on Thanksgiving – or the days that follow.

There are nearly 9 million older Americans who wake up in the morning and don’t know if they’ll get enough to eat. You can change that.

This Thanksgiving, make twice the difference to help a senior in BROOKLYN who’s struggling to find their next meal. Every penny you give will go directly to hunger relief organizations in New York and New Jersey.

Make your tax-deductible donation by November 22 and your gift will be MATCHED – up to $100,000!

With your support, we can reach older Americans who won’t get the nutrients they need without a helping hand.

Through our targeted, community-based programs, AARP Foundation will use 100% of your donation to help with local food assistance programs. Senior hunger is a threat close to home and your gift today will make a difference for real people struggling just around the corner from you.

Right now, hungry seniors in New York and New Jersey need your help. Will you step up to lend them a hand? Every donation you give today will be matched by Met Life Foundation, dollar-for-dollar, up to $100,000!

Give older Americans facing hunger a reason to be hopeful this Thanksgiving by making your urgent tax-deductible donation to AARP Foundation.

Thank you for helping seniors facing hunger, and standing with us as we help seniors facing other challenges, such as housing, income and isolation.

Sincerely,
Jo Ann Jenkins
President, AARP Foundation

AGING IN AMERICA 2012 CONFERENCE

Aging in America, the 2012 annual conference of the American Society on Aging is the largest multidisciplinary aging conference in the country.  It is recognized as the leading platform for sharing knowledge, perspectives, best practices and replicable models that help participants enhance their skills and be more effective in their work with older adults.  There’s no better professional development opportunity for the people and organizations whose missions support quality of life and care for elders.

Who:  American Society on Aging
When:  March 28 – April 1, 2012
Where:  Washington, D.C.

For more details just click here–> www.asaging.org/aia12

HOW MEDICARE FAILS THE ELDERLY (nytimes.com)

By Jane Gross

(Published Oct. 15, 2011)

HERE is the dirty little secret of health care in America for the elderly, the one group we all assume has universal coverage thanks to the 1965 Medicare law: what Medicare paid for then is no longer what recipients need or want today.

No one then envisioned the stunning advances in medicine that now keep people alive into advanced old age, often with unintended and unwelcome consequences. Indeed, scientific reports have showed the dangers, not merely the pointlessness and expense, of much of the care Medicare is providing.

Of course, some may actually want everything medical science has to offer. But overwhelmingly, I’ve concluded in a decade of studying America’s elderly, it is fee-for-service doctors and Big Pharma who stand to gain the most, and adult children, with too much emotion and too little information, driving those decisions.

In the last year alone, and this list is far from complete, here is what researchers have found both useless and harmful, according to leading medical journals:

• Feeding tubes, which can cause infections, nausea and vomiting, rarely prolong life. People with dementia often react with agitation, including pulling out the tubes, and then are either sedated or restrained.

• Abdominal and gall bladder surgery and joint replacements, for those who rank poorly on a scale that measures frailty, lead to complications, repeat hospital stays and placement in nursing homes.

• Tight glycemic control for Type 2 diabetes, present in 1 of 4 people over 65, often requires 8 to 10 years before it helps prevent blindness, kidney disease or amputations. Without enough time to reap the benefits, the elderly endure needless dietary limits and needle sticks.

TO READ FULL ESSAY CLICK HERE –> How Medicare Fails the Elderly – NYTimes.com.

BLACK WOMEN SUFFER DISABILITIES EARLIER in LIFE

Black women are likely to develop physical limitations earlier in life than others their age, according to a new study.  Researchers from Case Western University in Cleveland analyzed self-reported information on the mobility, strength and physical limitations of more than 8,700 older people included in the 1994-2006 U.S. Health and Retirement Study.  The participants ranged from 53 to 75 years old.  The study found a higher rate of physical problems among black women in their 50s and 60s in the study of black, Mexican-American and white men and women.  “We could not find the reason why African-American women developed limitations faster than other gender and racial/ethnic groups,” said David Warner, assistant professor of sociology, in a university news release.  After their mid-60s, however, the rate at which disabilities occurred among black women began to decrease, and by age 75 the rate leveled off, the study found.  For the study, recently published in Social Science & Medicine, the researchers also examined the participants’ early life experiences, socioeconomic status, marital status and health-related behaviors to determine how these factors might affect people’s disabilities.  Men of all racial and ethnic groups fared better than women the study found.  Better-educated, wealthier men, in particular, reported fewer physical health issues.  Women are at greater risk for disadvantages, such as lower incomes and lack of health care in midlife, which may have lifelong effects, the researchers said.  At age 75, Mexican-American women fared worst — with nearly five disabling limitations, twice as many on average as white men — the study found.  The study authors said future research should address the unique health experiences of older black women.  Preventive efforts are also needed to eliminate racial- and gender-related functional health disparities, they said.  The U.S. National Institutes of Health funded the investigation.

SOURCE: Case Western Reserve University, news release, HealthDay

via Black Women Tend To Suffer Disabilities Earlier In Life :  The Black Health Zone :.