Become a Member

MAP membership and certain MAP materials are restricted to the staff and board members of LGBT movement organizations and/or major funders of the movement for LGBT equality. Click below to become a member of MAP.

Join MAP

View our privacy policy.

Sexual Orientation Policy Tally

The term “sexual orientation” is loosely defined as a person’s pattern of romantic or sexual attraction to people of the opposite sex or gender, the same sex or gender, or more than one sex or gender. Laws that explicitly mention sexual orientation primarily protect or harm lesbian, gay, and bisexual people. That said, transgender people who are lesbian, gay or bisexual can be affected by laws that explicitly mention sexual orientation.

Gender Identity Policy Tally

“Gender identity” is a person’s deeply-felt inner sense of being male, female, or something else or in-between. “Gender expression” refers to a person’s characteristics and behaviors such as appearance, dress, mannerisms and speech patterns that can be described as masculine, feminine, or something else. Gender identity and expression are independent of sexual orientation, and transgender people may identify as heterosexual, lesbian, gay or bisexual. Laws that explicitly mention “gender identity” or “gender identity and expression” primarily protect or harm transgender people. These laws also can apply to people who are not transgender, but whose sense of gender or manner of dress does not adhere to gender stereotypes.

Donate

Dignity Denied: Religious Exemptions and LGBT Elder Services

The Bottom Line

It is estimated that there are approximately 2.7 million LGBT adults aged 50 and older in the United States, 1.1 million of whom are 65 and older. LGBT older adults, like many older Americans in the United States, rely on a network of service providers as they age–for community programming and congregate meals, for health care, and for housing ranging from independent living to skilled nursing. Research finds that a majority of these services are offered by religiously affiliated organizations.  While many of these religiously affiliated facilities provide quality care for millions of older adults, there is a coordinated effort to pass religious exemption laws, issue executive orders and agency guidance, and to litigate court cases to allow individuals, businesses, and even government contractors and grantees to use religion to discriminate. These laws are particularly worrisome for LGBT elders. Religious exemption laws jeopardize the security and safety of LGBT older adults at a time when they are most vulnerable and most in need.

Recommended citation:
Movement Advancement Project, SAGE, and Public Rights/Private Conscience Project at Columbia Law School. December 2017. "Dignity Denied: Religious Exemptions and LGBT Elder Services." http://www.lgbtmap.org/dignity-denied-lgbt-older-adults

Stay Informed

Be the first to know about new reports and MAP news by signing up for our newsletter