4th national LGBT&I ageing & aged care conference

The 4th National LGBT&I Ageing & Aged Care Conference Ageing with Pride: The new landscape of LGBT&I ageing and aged care in Australia

In October 2019, Val’s LGBTI Ageing and Aged Care, the ageing and aged care program of Rainbow Health Victoria, presented the National LGBT&I Ageing and Aged Care Conference, Ageing with Pride: the new landscape of ageing and aged care in Australia. The conference, with over 220 delegates, was co-hosted in partnership with the National LGBTI Health Alliance Silver Rainbow program, who will host the next conference in 2021.

The aim of the Conference has always been to inspire change and improve and promote healthy ageing pathways for older LGBTI people, people living with HIV, or LGBTI people with a disability, and their carers. Held over 2 days, the conference continued its established commitment to the principles of social justice, diversity and inclusion, however the 2019 program also addressed current reforms and changes occurring in the aged care sector particularly in relation to LGBTI ageing and aged care. Throughout 2019 the aged care sector was under national focus and scrutiny with the Royal Commission into Aged Care. There were also range of new sector systems and processes introduced – importantly the New Aged Care Quality Standards, the Charter of Rights, and the National Aged Care Diversity Framework and LGBTI Action Plan.

While the conference program highlighted the changing landscape of LGBTI ageing and aged care in Australia from the perspective of the sector, policy makers, advocates, academics and providers, as with the previous three conferences, the voices of older LGBTI people, people living with HIV, or LGBTI people with a disability, and their carers were again central to the program. This provides delegates the opportunity to hear directly from individuals regarding their experiences, ideas, hopes, fears, and visions of what ageing with pride is to them, and what they need and want with regard to LGBTI inclusive care and support as they age.

The keynote and invited speaker program included:

  • Georgina Beyer, Politician and human rights advocate and world’s first openly transgender mayor and member of Parliament in New Zealand
  • Ita Buttrose AC, OBE - Chair Australian Broadcasting Corporation, 2013 Australian of the Year, Health Advocate & Campaigner for the needs & rights of older Australians, former Chair of the National Advisory Committee on AIDS (NACAIDS)
  • Ro Allen, Victoria’s Gender and Sexuality Commissioner, Equality Branch, Department of Premier and Cabinet, Victoria State Government.
  • Tristan Meecham, Director, All The Queens Men, a participatory theatre company championing social equality and diversity, with programs including The Coming Back Out Ball and the LGBTI Elders Dance Club.
  • Sandra Pankhurst, trans woman extraordinaire, whose amazing life and business was shared in the award winning book, The Trauma Cleaner – in conversation.
  • Becoming Colleen, Screening of the documentary, “Becoming Colleen” - the story of Colleen Young who transitioned at aged 82, followed by panel discussion with the director Ian W Thomson, and guests Brenda Appleton (TGV) and Sandra Pankhurst, with more guests to be announced soon.

Read the full conference program here.