Would Like An LGBTQIA Old Folks Home - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Would Like An LGBTQIA Old Folks Home

Published March 23, 2015

Nanna Árnadóttir
Photos by
Alísa Kalyanova

The training and education delegate for Iceland’s national queer organisation, Samtökin ’78, has said that she would love to see the creation of an LGBTQIA retirement home, reports Vísir.

“We’ve definitely heard that there is a kind of culture in retirement homes, for shoving LGBTQIA people back into the closet and there are many people that didn’t have the guts to come out until they reached retirement age,” said Ugla Stefanía Kristjönudóttir Jónsdóttir in a radio interview yesterday. “Several countries are creating specific old age homes for the LGBTQIA community to work against this kind of prejudice and the situations that these people find themselves in. Iceland is full of homes for the elderly but I can’t imagine that LGBTQIA people are prioritised.”

Ugla went on to say that she would personally enjoy living in an LGBTQIA retirement home when the time came.

“I’m sure it would be really exciting and I would know that it was OK to be LGBTQIA, I wouldn’t find myself facing any prejudice or anything, it’s an exciting idea and worth investigating,” said Ugla.

In related news, RÚV reports that Samtökin ’78 have spoken out about the lack of financial support from the government to cover the organisation’s extensive responsibilities.

Last year the Icelandic government and the City of Reykjavík granted the organisation 8.5 million ISK (roughly 62.000 USD), which according to chairperson, Hilmar Hildarson Magnúsarson, does not sufficiently reflect the organisations duties nor cover expenses.

Samtökin ’78 offer counselling, legal support, help with medical support as well as social and support groups for Iceland’s LGBTQIA community and are forced to rely heavily on volunteers who pitch in alongside full time work.

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