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June 13, 2014

Aging LGBT Community Faces Challenges for Housing, Support

The Los Angeles Times
By David Heitz

As Southland gays rally around the pride flag this summer, there is much to celebrate even beyond marriage equality. But amid the revelry, some of the people who got us here — trailblazing elderly gays — are retreating back inside the closet.

Even in the Los Angeles area, known as a mecca for equality, services for LGBT seniors barely scratch the surface.

"People are starting to get interested in this issue," said Kathleen Sullivan, director of senior services for the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center. "It is dawning on people that we need to start talking about this."

Sullivan estimates about 65,000 LGBT people age 50 and over live in Los Angeles County. The center serves about 3,000 seniors in the region. Though L.A. is on the forefront of the issue compared to other cities, even when all its planned projects reach completion only about 200 units will be available.

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