The New York Times profiles Philly LGBT housing development, the John C. Anderson Apartments yesterday, spotlighting several residents and offering commentary on how the home is filling a terrible void that’s been felt in the LGBT community for far too long:
There is a real need for this housing, said Michael Adams, executive director of Services and Advocacy for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Elders (SAGE). In a recent study, the Equal Rights Center in Washington had testers in 10 states pose as either gay or straight couples and make phone calls to senior living facilities.
In nearly half the cases, according to the study, the same-sex couples faced discrimination from housing agents, such as not being told about vacant units that were mentioned to the straight couples.
Mark Segal, publisher of the Philadelphia Gay News and developer of the complex, gets a nice writeup, too:
Mr. Segal’s name is widely recognized among gay activists … He is the heart and soul of the apartments, and though he has been giving visitors his standard tour for weeks now, he continues to find his own jokes funny. “Follow me,” he said, rushing out a door onto the sun deck. “There’s a big debate about whether to make it clothing optional — and that’s the naked truth. Naked truth!”
Limiting the apartments to gay, transgender or bisexual residents would be discriminatory and illegal, but Mr. Segal has been able to create a largely gay residence by holding information sessions at community centers in gay neighborhoods and advertising in the gay press.
See our shots from the recent opening ceremony here.