Villa: Advancing toward extended support for older LGBTQ adults

SPRINGFIELD – To recuperate from the discrimination older LGBTQ adults have faced historically, State Senator Karina Villa (D-West Chicago) has passed legislation that would allocate a designated advocate under the Department on Aging for addressing mistreatment.

“The LGBTQ community has faced a lot of stress and overcame amble amounts of adversity historically,” Villa said. “A designated advocate would allow this misrepresented community the support they need to continue on.”

Villa’s measure would require the Department on Aging to provide older LGBTQ adults with a designated advocate and creates an LGBTQ Older Adult Curriculum and Training Program for Department on Aging service providers and contractors.

Designated advocates would help older LGBTQ adults and adults living with HIV face unique challenges as they age because of a lack of affirming resources, services available and the ongoing stigmatization.

“These advocates are essential for our older LGBTQ community to ensure they are getting fair treatment,” said Villa. “We need to get to a place where we are working for equality for all.”

SB 3490 passed the Senate floor on Wednesday and now heads to the House for further consideration.

Senator Villa is a longstanding advocate for the senior community. She hosts a monthly Senior Advisory Committee on the second Friday of each month at 10 a.m. via Zoom. To receive the link and agenda contact Villa’s office at