Reported by The Scotsman – the news we share raises awareness of equality issues being reported in the media.
Baby boomer LGBTQI people in care homes are “de-gaying” themselves to hide their sexual or gender identity for fear of bullying and discrimination from staff and other residents, a film maker has said.
Glenda Rome’s film, Return To The Closet?, featuring Scots who lived in some of the toughest times to be gay, will be premiered at the CCA in Glasgow on 1 May, 2019, at the launch of the month-long 2019 Luminate festival for older citizens.
The documentary is released in the same year as the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall riots in Greenwich Village in New York, which saw a week of rioting breaking out after police raided the Stonewall Inn gay club in the early hours of 28 June, 1969.
The event was hailed as being a catalyst for the modern fight for the gay rights movement in the US and around the world.
Older LGBT people in care or who have carers visiting their homes have spoken of “de-gaying” their living space by removing photographs of themselves with a same-sex partner and mementoes of their past.
Others say they are afraid of how other residents will treat them if they reveal their sexuality.
However, Rome, commissioned by Luminate and LGBT Age, to make the film, said one of the most shocking things uncovered during research and extensive interviews was that many care homes report they have no LGBTQI residents.
“The idea of older people feeling they have to ‘go back into the closet’ is terrible. It’s something people are just starting to think about now and the last thing we need is for the progress that has been made, which was hard-won for a generation who lived through the criminalisation of their sexuality, to be undermined.