Training to Prevent Discrimination Based on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity and Expression Offered by CADER Reaches Over 28,000 Learners


This article was updated on June 27, 2023.

In a long-standing relationship with the Massachusetts Executive Office of Elder Affairs (EOEA), the Center for Aging & Disability Education & Research (CADER) at BUSSW offers a free online course: “Prevention and Elimination of Discrimination Based on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity and Expression.” This course is mandatory training for case managers, staff members, and volunteers working with Massachusetts EOEA, Aging Services Access Points (ASAP), and MassHealth Office of Long Term Services and Supports (OLTSS). The course is part of EOEA’s commitment to ensure improved access for underrepresented communities among older adults in Massachusetts. Since it was launched two years ago, over 28,000 learners have registered for and completed the course.

“CADER is pleased to collaborate with EOEA in their commitment to ensure that all individuals receiving services are treated with respect and compassion regardless of race, creed, gender identity, or whom they love,” says Research Assistant Professor Bronwyn Keefe, director of CADER and The Network for Professional Education.

CADER and EOEA also have a statewide Certificate Initiative partnership to provide online, self-paced certificate programs for professionals serving older adults and persons with disabilities in the Commonwealth employed at ASAPs or COAs. CADER has trained over 2,000 people in the past two years across the Commonwealth in key skills, knowledge, and competencies to meet Elder Affairs’ mission to promote independence, empowerment, and well-being of older people, individuals with disabilities, and their families.

About the Course

In order to prevent and eliminate discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression, Massachusetts legislation mandated that new curriculum and training be developed and implemented to improve medical access for these underrepresented groups.

This course’s content was created by the LGBT Aging Project at the Fenway Institute and is managed by CADER. As leaders in engaging with mainstream elder care providers to prevent the mistreatment of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender elders, their guidance and support in creating this course was invaluable.

There are 4 sections to the course:

  • Sexual orientation and gender identity
  • LGBT history, stigma, and resiliency
  • Best practices in providing services

Who Is Eligible to Take this Course?

Per Massachusetts state law, all current employees whose employers fit one or more of the following are required to take this course:

  • Providers who contract with, receive funding from, or are certified by EOEA
  • Aging Service Action Points (ASAPs)
  • MassHealth Office of Long-Term Services and Supports (OLTSS)
  • In addition, new employees from these organizations must complete this training course within 12 months of hire.

Learn More About the Course