Select Page

IFA Virtual Town Hall Chat Summary 2 October 2020

Key Resources

Upcoming Events

  • IFA Virtual Town Hall: COVID-19 and Older People: Resilience of Older Persons in Africa
    Friday 9 October 2020 at 7:00 am EDT (Toronto)


Speaker Biographies

Ms. Samantha Edmonds:

Ms. Edmonds is one of Australia’s leading LGBTI inclusive strategists, policy makers and influencers with extensive knowledge and experience in assisting ageing, aged care and health providers develop LGBTI inclusive services.  Sam is the Managing Director of Ageing with Pride, her own consultancy that specialises in developing, delivering and evaluating projects, programs and services that are respectful, person-centred, culturally safe and inclusive of LGBTI elders and older people.  She also currently works as the National Project Coordinator for Elder Abuse Action Australia (EAAA), a relatively new national peak organisation established to respond to and prevent elder abuse.

Additionally, Sam is Chair of the Aged Care Sector Committee (ASCS) Diversity Subgroup and a member of the ACSC, which provides advice to the Australian Government on aged care policy development and implementation and helps to guide the reform of the aged care system.  She is also a distinguished member of the Australian Association of Gerontology (AAG), Convenor of the AAG LGBTI Special Interest Group (SIG); Co-Convenor of the AAG Elder Abuse SIG; and a partner in the Rainbow Ageing Project, a national research project that aims to provide new data on the health and well-being of older lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Australians, led by the Australian Research Centre in Sex, Health and Society (ARCSHS), La Trobe University; and a peer reviewer for the Australasian Journal on Ageing.

Previously, Sam was the Silver Rainbow National Project Manager at the National LGBTI Health Alliance, which provided national coordination and support activities promoting the well-being of LGBTI elders and inclusive service delivery by aged care providers.  She holds Masters Degrees in Social Policy, Politics and International Relations, has completed the Macquarie University Global Leadership Program and has work experience in fields such as health policy and human rights.

Mr. Michael Adams:

Mr. Adams is the Chief Executive Officer of SAGE (Advocacy and Services for LGBT Elders), the world’s largest and oldest organization dedicated to improving the lives of LGBT older people.  Founded in 1978 and headquartered in New York City, SAGE is a national organization that offers supportive services and consumer resources to LGBT older people and their caregivers.  SAGE also advocates for public policy changes that address the needs of LGBT elders, provides education and technical assistance for aging providers and LGBT community organizations through its National Resource Center on LGBT Aging, and cultural competency training through SAGECare.  With staff located across the country, SAGE also coordinates SAGENet, a growing network of affiliates in the United States.

Mr. Adams, a graduate of Stanford Law School and Harvard College, previously served as Director of Education and Public Affairs and Deputy Legal Director for Lambda Legal. Prior to that, he was Litigation Director of the ACLU’s Lesbian and Gay Rights Project.  He has served on advisory councils for AARP, the American Society on Aging, and the New York City Department for the Aging, among others. Adams is the Chair of the American Society on Aging.



  • In the context of evolving policies around the definition of gender, is there education about the potential impact on access to health services and are health care workers part of the awareness and advocacy efforts?
  • A critical element in advocacy efforts is collaborating intersectorally. The collaborative work of SAGE, the Diverse Elder Coalition and the John A. Hartford Foundation is an example of advocacy alliances in the United States.
  • The Center for Advocacy for the Rights and Interests of the Elderly (CARIE) has benefitted from SAGECare training and certification in both individual and systemic advocacy. Being culturally competent is essential to be inclusive, welcoming, and effective in working with LGBT older adults.  Thank you Michael and SAGE  for you advocacy and leadership!
  • The AGE Barometer 2020 (not yet released) will explore the experiences of older LGBTI people through COVID-19 across Europe


Share This