If you were bullied at a young age, you know the kind of toll that can take on your adult life. But what if adults, even seniors, were bullying each other? And by bullying, I don’t mean calling someone fat or ugly. In the case of Marsha Wetzel, a 70-year-old lesbian, she’s sick of the bullying and derogatory terms her fellow senior home care patients have said to her. But she is suing because they have gotten physical…
According to Pink News, an Illinois court will hear oral arguments Marsha’s bid to revive her lawsuit alleging a Chicago-area senior living facility did nothing to stop residents from hurling slurs, spitting at her and physically harassing her.
Marsha was slapped and taunted since moving to the Glen St. Andrews Living Community in Niles, Il, with staff ignoring her pleas for help. The widow, who moved there when her partner Judy Kahn died of colon cancer three years ago, was homeless giving her no other choice but to move into Glen St. Andrew.
Marsha felt she had no choice, and now she has now launched a ground-breaking lawsuit against the home for failing to protect her. Expressing her frustrations and explaining her situation, in a YouTube video, Martha spoke of her fear after coming out when she showed a fellow resident a photo of the son she adopted with Judy. She said:
“It got out and I thought, ‘Oh no, here we go again’ Gay hate. There were a handful of residents, I could tell were really going to give me trouble. I tried to avoid them but they would seek me out to taunt me. I’ve heard every negative homosexual term, I’ve been hit more than once. You can get so scared, you can’t sleep, you can’t eat. You don’t want to take a shower, you don’t want to get dressed. You don’t want to go in the hall.”
She said the faculty failed to do anything after she reported residents were calling her a “f***ing dyke,” “f***ing faggot,” and “homosexual b*tch.” Rather than being met with compassion, she was allegedly marginalized further by staff who retaliated because of her complaints.
Next Tuesday is the day the 7th U.S. Court of Appeals hearing in one of the first-of-its-kind lawsuits comes a year after a lower court dismissed Wetzel’s suit. If it’s reinstated, it could help establish that federal Fair Housing Act protections extend to LGBT tenants.