Older LGBTQ+ individuals can experience extra concerns about moving to residential care, compared to heterosexual and cisgender individuals. When relocating to a care home, some LGBTQ+ individuals worry about facing discrimination based on their sexual orientation or gender identity. This fear can make them hesitant to make the move.
More and more care providers are recognising the importance of being proactively inclusive and welcoming to LGBTQ+ residents or residents who are reluctant to disclose their sexual orientation for fear of discrimination.
We know that for LGBTQ+ individuals in need of residential care, finding an actively supportive and inclusive environment can greatly enhance wellbeing and can help reduce any fears a person may have about moving into a care home. This article highlights some of the areas you may want to consider when looking for a LGBTQ+ friendly care home.
For some, moving into a care home is what they feel they want or need to do, often because they’re struggling to manage at home or because they’re feeling anxious, isolated or lonely. However, for many, moving into a care home can be a daunting prospect.
It is a big step moving out of the place where memories have been made, where they've been comfortable, where they are familiar with the layout, know where things are kept and where they may be happily integrated into the community with friends and neighbours nearby.
Speak to a member of staff
When looking for a care home aim to speak to the manager. You of course need to ask them about their home and the availability of rooms and check whether the cost is within the available budget. Also ask them, for example:
• Are they LGBTQ+ friendly?
• How do they support LGBTQ+ people in their care home?
• Are their care home staff trained in LGBTQ+ awareness?
• Do they collaborate with any LGBTQ+ support groups or organisations in the local community?
Everyone has a right to equal treatment. It is encouraging if a manager shows an interest in your questions, sounds open to understanding and respecting each resident's unique needs and fosters an inclusive and happy environment.
Through questions and answers, you should gain a feel for whether this could be the right home for you or your relative.
If a home is a possibility, an essential next step is to arrange a visit to the care home. Ideally, visit several homes to compare them as they are all different. Visiting allows a person to meet the staff and residents and see everything with their own eyes. This helps form an opinion as to whether the home is right for you, your partner, friend or relative, what life would be like and what the home does to help a person settle in.
Any care home chosen will need to carry out a pre-admission assessment, which enables the manager to check whether they can meet the care needs and wishes of the individual. This also offers the potential resident, who may not have been able to visit the home due to their health and care needs, the opportunity to meet and get to know a member of staff.
The right care is vital for wellbeing
Finding the right care for an individual's needs and wishes is vital. Everyone is different and care provision varies across the country. If you'd like personalised advice regarding care options and research carried out by experts into care homes, get in touch - our Care Advisers will be happy to help.
Grace Consulting are the UK’s founding providers of expert independent advice on elderly care advice, special needs advice and neurodiversity advice.
Independence and client wellbeing are at the heart of everything we do. We listen, reassure and advise you on how to move forwards and find the best possible solutions for your unique life challenges.