Even before she began searching for senior housing, Marti Smith had heard the horror stories: Her gay friends told Smith, a lesbian, that when their partners entered assisted living the partners had to hide their homosexuality to avoid bias and bullying. Luckily, Marti found a housing unit that received official certification in LGBTQ competency, part of a growing trend in senior housing to be more accepting of LGBTQ elders.
“I cannot tell you how important it is to be a 73-year-old, out, card-carrying lesbian where I live,” Marti said. “I don’t have to worry. We have two social workers who are funded by the center and the residents, and I don’t have to explain things to them.”