Mitini Nepal and EnGendeRights Philippines, in collaboration with Outright International, recently conducted 52 in-depth interviews and two surveys with 203 lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex (LGBTI) individuals ages 50 to 75 years. The project confirmed that LGBTI elders experienced discrimination in their youth while at home, school, workplace, and by service providers. In addition, participants noted that they continue to experience such discrimination.
The study is also part of the ‘LGBTI Elders Advancing Project’ funded and supported by SAGE—Outright's partner on issues pertaining to LGBTI elders.
Here are highlights from the study:
- 36% of LGBTI elders in Nepal and 48% in the Philippines are expecting to lose their homes within the year due to unaffordable rents, demolition, eviction, and loss of shared living spaces with friends and community members who are also under-resourced and facing housing instability.
- 80% of older LGBTI people in Nepal do not have health insurance and cannot afford medical care while 86% do not receive government benefits and have difficulty receiving elder care services.
- 55% of older LGBTI people in the Philippines have no health insurance while 40% do not have enough money for food and medicine and 41% do not receive government assistance.
Ging Cristobal getting ready to interview older LBTQ women at the Correctional Institute for Women in Mandaluyong City, Philippines.
Mitini Nepal's high-level launch in Nepal on May 17, 2023.
This data is being used to raise awareness about the invisible struggles of older LGBTI people. The findings have also been shared to educate and inform LGBTI organizations, senior citizen organizations, and relevant government ministries and legislators. Recommendations were also provided to ensure support for LGBTI-inclusive policy reforms that address age-based discrimination, elder abuse in family and institutional settings as well as denial of citizenship cards and barriers to accessing government benefits.
A core group of LGBTI older adults, who participated in the study, are being trained to share the data aimed at educating communities in provincial, national, regional and international forums.
Last month, to mark the International Day of Against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia, Mitini Nepal released fact sheets about this study in English and Nepali in a ceremony in Kathmandu. EnGendeRights Philippines will be releasing the fact sheets in English and Filipino languages in six cities on June 24th.
In March 2023, Outright and SAGE called on the United Nations Open Ended Working Group on Ageing (OEWGA) to include LGBTI-inclusive protections in the proposed new Convention on the Rights of Older Persons. Below are two statements that spotlight critical issues facing older LGBTI people and recommended steps towards social inclusion and access to health and health services for older LGBTI people.