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Supporting Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, & Transgender Inclusivity in Long-Term Care Homes: A Canadian Perspective

  • Tamara Sussman (a1), Shari Brotman (a1), Heather MacIntosh (a1), Line Chamberland (a2), Judith MacDonnell (a3), Andrea Daley (a4), Jean Dumas (a5) and Molly Churchill (a1)...

It is critical to ensure that long-term care (LTC) homes are sensitive to the needs of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) older adults. However, the extent to which the LTC home sector has adopted recommended strategies is unknown. This qualitative study reports findings from two initiatives: Semi-structured telephone interviews with Canadian LTC home administrators on strategies adopted to support LGBT inclusivity (n = 32), and discussions with participants attending a 2-day meeting on supporting LGBT inclusivity in LTC (n = 25). We found that LGBT inclusivity training was the most commonly adopted strategy among the LTC homes surveyed. Study findings further suggested that practices more visible to residents and families, such as LGBT-themed programming, inclusive language and symbols, or joint initiatives with LGBT communities, were less commonly adopted because of anticipated negative resident/family reactions. The importance and benefits of comprehensive strategies that include staff, residents, and family are discussed.

Il est indispensable que les foyers de soins de longue durée (FSLD) soient sensibilisés aux besoins des aîné(e)s lesbiennes, gays, bisexuels et transgenres. Considérant que le degré d’intégration de stratégies recommandées en ce sens dans le secteur des FSLD est inconnu, cette étude qualitative canadienne vise à présenter les résultats de deux initiatives principales ciblant cette lacune : des entrevues semi-structurées téléphoniques ont ainsi été menées avec des administrateurs de FSLD au Canada concernant les stratégies adoptées pour appuyer l’inclusion des personnes LGBT (n=32) et une rencontre de deux jours organisée sur la thématique de l’inclusivité des personnes LGBT dans les FSLD (n=25) a été organisée, le contenu des discussions de cette rencontre ayant été analysé dans la présente étude. Nos résultats révèlent que la formation concernant l’inclusivité LGBT était la stratégie la plus fréquemment adoptée dans les FSLD participant à l’étude. Ils montrent aussi que les pratiques plus visibles pour les résidents et les familles, telles que les programmations thématiques, l’utilisation d’un vocabulaire ou de symboles LGBT ou les initiatives conjointes avec les communautés LGBT étaient moins fréquentes, étant donné l’anticipation de réactions négatives de la part des résidents ou de leur famille. L’importance et les avantages de stratégies intégrées incluant le personnel, les résidents et les familles sont discutés.

Corresponding author
*La correspondance et les demandes de tirés-à-part doivent être adressées à : / Correspondence and requests for offprints should be sent to: Tamara Sussman, Ph.D. McGill University School of Social Work 3506 University Street, Room 305 Montreal, QB H3A 2A7 <>
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Canadian Journal on Aging / La Revue canadienne du vieillissement
  • ISSN: 0714-9808
  • EISSN: 1710-1107
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