Beatitudes Campus to Host Premier of ‘Gen Silent’ Documentary

The United Church of Christ’s Beatitudes Campus, a life plan community for active seniors in Phoenix, will host a premier showing of “Gen Silent,” the award-winning documentary about LGBTQ aging in America, on Tues. July 19 at 6:30 p.m. AARP Arizona, PFLAG and PrimeTimers are partnering with the campus to host the event. The event is free and open to the public.

“Gen Silent,” by Stu Maddox, an award-winning filmmaker with international acclaim, is an enlightening but sobering documentary about the paradoxical dilemma of six LGBTQ older adults in Boston. Gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender older people who fought the first battles for equality may now face fear of discrimination, bullying and abuse. Many are hiding their lives to survive. LGBTQ older adults may feel more isolated in their community and often are afraid to ask for help.

“Beatitudes Campus continues to be at the forefront of LGBTQ issues,” says Michelle Just, president and CEO of Beatitudes Campus. “The Beatitudes Campus community values the human experience in all of its similarities and differences. Our promise statement exemplifies our strong belief that all people are welcome. Although we have done much in addressing LGBTQ issues, we know we have more to do as we continue to find innovative ways to create a more vibrant and resilient community.”

LGBTQ older adults still remain largely invisible in aging services, yet much has been done to better support aging successfully, health and well-being of the LGBT mid-life and older adults. Immediately following the film, a panel will discuss practices, programs and policy initiatives designed to address the spectrum of services for LGBTQ older adults, their families and communities. The panel members will be:

— Dana Kennedy, State Director, AARP

— Cheryl Knupp, Senior Vice President, Health Services, Beatitudes Campus

— Linda Travis, Educator/Consultant, Beatitudes Campus

— David Ragan, Senior Vice President, Resident Services, Beatitudes Campus

“”Gen Silent” is a powerful portrait of LGBTQ older adults and the struggles they often face later in life,” says David Ragan, senior vice president of resident services at Beatitudes Campus. “It is poignant in its portrayal of six LGBTQ seniors and their fear of growing older. It is a consciousness-raising documentary that every family, care partner and healthcare professional needs to watch so that the issue of LGBTQ aging becomes part of our conversation.”

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