Governor signs California bill that will protect LGBT seniors from discrimination in long-term care facilities

Starting next year, California’s LGBT seniors will be protected from discrimination in long-term care facilities., thanks to a bill signed by Gov. Jerry Brown. Photo: iStock/EyeJoy.

SACRAMENTO — Starting next year, California’s LGBT seniors will be protected from discrimination in long-term care facilities.

SB 219, “LGBT Senior Long-Term Care Bill of Rights,” was signed by Gov. Jerry Brown on Wednesday. The law will go into effect Jan. 1, 2018.

RELATED: California bill would outlaw discrimination against LGBTQ seniors in long-term care facilities

Sen. Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco) authored the bill.

“Our LGBT seniors built the modern LGBT community and led the fight for so many of the rights our community takes for granted today,” Wiener said in a statement. “It is our duty to make sure they can age with the dignity and respect they deserve.”

Once implemented, the law will provide various protections for LGBT seniors:

  • Require facility staff to use the resident’s preferred pronoun and name
  • Prevent facilities from denying admission to a long-term care facility based on anti-LGBT attitudes of other residents
  • Prevent facilities from transferring a resident within a facility or to another facility based on anti-LGBT attitudes of other residents
  • Prevent facilities from evicting or involuntarily discharging a resident on the basis of a person’s actual or perceived sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, gender expression, or HIV status
  • Require each facility to post a specified notice regarding discrimination alongside its current nondiscrimination policy in all places and on all materials where the nondiscrimination policy is posted.

About the author

Phillip Zonkel

Award-winning journalist Phillip Zonkel spent 17 years at Long Beach's Press-Telegram, where he was the first reporter in the paper's history to have a beat covering the city's vibrant LGBTQ. He also created and ran the popular and innovative LGBTQ news blog, Out in the 562.

He won two awards and received a nomination for his reporting on the local LGBT community, including a two-part investigation that exposed anti-gay bullying of local high school students and the school districts' failure to implement state mandated protections for LGBT students.