Innovating inclusive housing for 2SLGBTQIA+ Seniors
Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation
Year Completed
Green Violin
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Navigating the complexities of aging as a member of the 2SLGBTQIA+ (Two-Spirit, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex, Asexual) community often means facing unique challenges tied to identity alongside a history of discrimination and significant social changes.
These seniors carry concerns about potentially having to 'go back into the closet' when considering a move into congregative living senior housing facilities, which may not be equipped to respect and reflect their lived experiences. To address these critical issues, Intelligent Futures partnered with Green Violin to launch the 2SLGBTQIA+ Seniors Housing Lab, funded by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation. This initiative was designed to innovate housing solutions that prioritize safety, inclusivity, and authenticity, allowing individuals to truly be themselves within their living environments.

Throughout the project, the lab engaged with a wide range of 2SLGBTQIA+ seniors to gather diverse insights that underscore the variability of their experiences and the socio-economic factors that influence their lives. This exploration highlighted the need for flexible housing solutions that account for intersecting identities. As a result, the collaborative efforts led to the development of the 'Safe Village' prototype—a community-centric model that fosters a supportive and secure environment for all seniors, regardless of their sexual or gender orientation. This model has been refined with input from community-based organizations, creating a scalable and replicable approach to senior housing. The culmination of this work is presented in the 2SLGBTQIA+ Seniors Housing Toolkit, an open-source resource for housing developers and providers, offering guidelines on building designs and modifications necessary to make senior housing spaces welcoming and affirming for 2SLGBTQIA+ individuals.

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