LGBT advocates say the move illustrates the Trump Administration's attempt to erase elderly LGBT Americans, making it impossible to assess the extent older adults are receiving federally-funded services, including home-delivered meals, family caregiver support, and transportation.
Below is what happened on Trump's 39th day in office. You can find out what damage was done every other day so far on the Saddest Calendar on the Internet.
The US Department of Health and Human Services has eliminated questions about LGBT people on two key national surveys on the elderly and the disabled, the Center for American Progress reports.
One of the surveys affected is The National Survey of Older Americans Act Participants, an annual survey that gathers information on how well the Older Americans Act serves older adults. Policymakers and organizations heavily rely on this data to determine whether or not individuals need services like home-delivered meals, caregiver support, and transportation. Policymakers and advocates also rely on this data to ensure OAA programs are meeting their goals without leaving anyone out. While the survey has addressed sexual orientation since 2014, with the proposed directive, the 2017 survey would no longer include a question regarding sexual orientation and gender identity. The other survey, the Annual Program Performance Report for Centers for Independent Living, also removes questions relating to identity.
Without these questions, it is nearly impossible to determine if public services adequately meet the needs of these marginalized communities.
While LGBTQ Americans already experience unequal access to housing, healthcare, and employment, the HHS' proposed actions specifically target those who often rely on safety net programs for survival. According to Services and Advocacy for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Elders (SAGE), the more than three million LGBT American seniors often confront severe challenges like intense social isolation and are "twice as likely to live alone, twice as likely to be single...[three to four] times less likely to have children to help care for them in their later years, [are often] estranged from their families of origin as a result of historical bias...[and] are more likely to live in poverty than older Americans in general."
"Caring about our LGBT elders means making sure they have access to publicly-funded senior services, which can be literally life-saving," said Michael Adams, Chief Executive Officer of SAGE says in the release. "Now, it appears that the Trump Administration wants to make believe LGBT older people don't exist, by erasing them from this critically important survey. We insist that this decision be reversed and that the federal government commit to serving all elders in need, including those who are LGBT."
Marriage equality doesn't exist in most of Asia, but LGBTQ activists hope that Taiwan's landmark court ruling will inspire change.May 24, 2017
We asked a professional to share their tips and tricks to perfecting the art of the nude selfie.May 23, 2017
Memed into history, the split-screen face-off between O'Donnell and conservative pundit Elisabeth Hasselbeck over the Iraq War captures a time when it wasn't trendy for celebrities to oppose the President.May 23, 2017
On the first page of his new budget proposal, Donald Trump has both named Planned Parenthood and called for its absolute defunding—among other cuts that disproportionally affect low income women.May 23, 2017
But Rachel seemed to like it?May 23, 2017
Marlene Dietrich was a German-born, anti-fascist screen siren who still captivates audiences 25 years after her death.May 23, 2017
In the United States, state-level legislation are being used to prosecute pregnant women who use drugs—violating their civil rights and making it impossible for them to get the help they need.May 23, 2017
Dublin graphic designer Linda Kavanagh has raised over 2,000 euros for a pro-choice charity through the power of Keanu Reeves memes.May 23, 2017
Followers of the controversial diet believe that humans can survive on cosmic energy from air. Doctors and dietitians beg to differ.May 23, 2017
In a landmark case, lawyers are claiming religious freedom to defend doctors facing charges for performing FGM on seven-year-olds in Michigan.May 22, 2017