Queering home care

home sweet home

This was a qualitative policy case study of older lesbian and bisexual women’s experiences with accessing publicly-funded home care services in Ontario. I took an intersectional and multi-scalar approach in this research, and was guided by a feminist political economy framework and critical sexuality scholarship.

My findings illustrate that older lesbian and bisexual women experience restricted access to needed care as a result of micro-level (e.g. gender norms, chronic illness, sexual minority experiences) and meso-level factors (e.g. managerial rationing). These micro and meso-level factors exacerbate already restricted access to publicly-funded home care services as a result of macro-level factors (e.g. neoliberal restructuring of healthcare in Canada).

My analysis also demonstrates the existence of discrimination based on sexual orientation in the home care system. In particular, cohort-based experiences and systemic heteronormativity contribute to older women’s sexual minority stress and discrimination from care providers.

Finally, my findings highlight how gender and sexual orientation influence women’s care experiences and their expectations for quality of care. Specifically, older lesbian and bisexual women conceptualize quality of care consistent with a feminist ethic of care and want providers to demonstrate knowledge and awareness of sexual and gender diversity.

Related publications:

Grigorovich, A. Quality of care in home care settings: older lesbian and bisexual women’s perspectives. Scandinavian Journal of Caring Sciences 2016; 30(1):108–116.

Grigorovich, A. Negotiating sexuality in home care: older lesbian and bisexual women’s experiences in home care. Culture, Health, & Sexuality 2015; 17(8):947-61.

Grigorovich, A. Restricted access: older lesbian and bisexual women’s experiences with home care services. Research on Aging 2015; 37(7):763-83.

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