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Seattle To Look At Barriers To Affordable Housing For LGBTQ Seniors

Elaine Thompson
AP Photo
Volunteers carry a giant rainbow flag used to collect donations as they march at the 41st annual Pride Parade Sunday, June 28, 2015, in Seattle.

As Seattle works on increasing affordable housing for residents of all walks of life, some City Council members want to make sure low-income lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender seniors aren’t left out. Pending a Seattle City Council vote next week, the city budget will include money to do some groundwork on what exactly the needs of this community are.

The number of LGBTQ seniors in the Seattle area is expected to double by 2030. And studies show this community suffers from deeper income inequality and more discrimination, combined with a higher risk for health problems. That’s the reason Seattle City Councilmember Lorena Gonzalez wants to fund a study to help shape plans for safe and affordable housing options.

“When we’re dealing with real issues of how does housing affordability intersect with housing discrimination , this is a unique population and as we are venturing down this path of investing significantly in the creation of more affordable housing, building a community can look different based on who we’re building it for,” said Gonzalez

The $54,000 study would look at what amenities could be co-located with LGBTQ senior housing, including health clinics and social support services.