They forgot to mention that Black Gay and Transgender Americans grow old, but otherwise the new Center for American Progress report, “Jumping Beyond the Broom: Why Black Gay and Transgender Americans Need More Than Marriage Equality” is a must-have for those who want a more complete picture of our LGBT community.
Beyond the Broom “aim(s) to establish a common understanding and knowledge bank of the data and policy research on black gay and transgender people since no consolidated inventory of literature or data on the population’s issues currently exists.” Relying primarily on four large studies – each annotated at length – the report notes that “much of the academic research and data gathered on black gay and transgender populations is framed in disparities, victimization, and hardship.” There are lengthy passages on what’s happening to Black gay and transgender youth, and some data on health disparities and family structures.
The 48-page report is available for download at no cost at http://www.americanprogress.org/issues/2012/01/black_lgbt.html
Need data to back up your advocacy for employment non-discrimination legislation for LGBT workers? Six hundred and eighty pages of it has been compiled into a new docuemnt available at http://www.americanprogress.org/issues/2012/05/pdf/lgbt_eo_research.pdf
The compilation, put together by the Williams Institute, the Human Rights Campaign, and Center for American Progress, groups the documents into six categories: employment discrimination and the LGBT workforce; the business case for LGBT workplace protections; public opinion and political support for equal opportunity; impact and legal issues regarding an LGBT nondiscrimination executive order; and miscellaneous. The first category contains only one document, a policy memo (inexplicably still labeled “Confidential — not for circulation”) making the case for why President Obama should issue an Executive Order banning federal contractors from discriminating against LGBT workers.
Although none of the documents’ titles indicate they cover how employment discrimination leads to income dispararities and physical, social, and emotional problems in old age, there is obviously a clear link that can (and should) be made. Please let us at GrayPrideParade know if you know of documents that discuss the linkages.
“Intersectionality” is a big term that means something simple: if you belong to more than one minority group, you’re likely to have even more problems than peers who belong to just one of those minority groups. There’s no better example of the results of intersectionality than a new publication issued by the National Black Justice Coalition, the National Center for Transgender Equality, and the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force.
“Injustice at Every Turn: A Look at Black Respondents in the National Transgender Discrimination Survey,” is a four-page fact sheet that highlights findings from the 381 NTDS respondents who said they were both Black or Black multiracial and transgender. While these respondents were of every age, it is critical to remember that the economic, health, and social problems people have as young and middle-aged adults lay the groundwork for even more economic, health, and social problems in old age. Continue reading
There are both practical and symbolic aspects to today’s end of the military’s Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy requiring lesbian, gay, and bisexual people to not come out in the military, or face discharge.
From an aging standpoint, the most important reason to applaud the policy change is that LGBT people are far more likely to be veterans than are heterosexual, non-transgender people. Although about 13% of adult Americans served in the military, unpublished data from the Caring and Aging with Pride national LGBT aging survey indicate that more than one-quarter of LGBT older adults are veterans. Although LGBT veterans are not denied Veterans Administration (VA) benefits, the existence of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell surely made it more difficult for them to push for benefits, services, or respect. The change should make their lives easier.
It is absolutely critical to note, however, that transgender service members are still not protected. Transgender people in the military who disclose their gender identity can still be discharged. Lest you think this can’t affect very many people, surveys are showing that high numbers of transgender people are military veterans. For instance, the Caring and Aging with Pride survey mentioned above found that 41% of transgender respondents were veterans, a rate 61% higher than the LGB respondents. The National Center on Transgender Equality and National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Injustice as Every Turn survey found that 54% of transgender respondents age 65 and up were veterans. Luckily, transgender veterans recently received a major assist from the Obama Administration, which issued new guidance requiring the VA to treat such veterans with respect. (To learn more, see the GrayPrideParade post of June 14, “New Transgender Veterans’ Health Care Guidelines.”)
The Caring and Aging with Pride study, funded by the National Institutes of Health and the National Institute on Aging, has published preliminary findings of its nationwide survey of 2,560 LGBT adults aged 50 to 95.
FORGE’s Transgender Aging Network was one of 11 partnering groups that helped recruit participants in the study and that are helping shape and disseminate its results. The 4-page preliminary report briefly covers key findings about service needs, physical and mental health, health strengths and risks, health care access, and health behaviors. The full report will be available in Fall 2011.
This report, The Health Report: Resilience and Disparities among LGBT Older Adults, includes the following highlights:
- Nearly one-half of LGBT older adults have a disability and nearly one-third report depression.
- Two-thirds experience verbal harassment and 40% physical violence.
- Among transgender older adults, 22% need to see a doctor but cannot due to cost.
- Most LGBT older adults (91%) engage in wellness activities.
- 88% feel good about belonging to the LGBT community.
- 15% fear receiving health services outside the LGBT community.
- Two-thirds report the need for senior housing, social events and transportation.
You can access the preliminary report at http://depts.washington.edu/agepride/docs/Prelimin_Findings_Report_FINAL.pdf
Exactly how much would a Lesbian or Gay couple lose over their lifetimes, given current discriminatory laws and benefits?
The New York Times found out the answer isn’t simple. They created scenarios in which Lesbian couples and Gay male couples had two children (with one partner staying home to care for the children for five years), made $140,000 a year, lived in New York, California, or Florida, were together for 46 years, and in which the first partner died at age 81. They further looked at income variables through two scenarios: in one, both made the same amount; in the other couple, one person made $110,000 and the other, $30,000. Continue reading
This week the Williams Institute – an LGBT think tank located at UCLA’s law school — celebrated its 10th anniversary and released a brilliant public relations piece subtitled, “We thought we’d celebrate by sharing 10 things that over a decade of our research has shown about LGBT people and issues.”
Not all of the data they cite is particularly helpful or noncontroversial – the statement that the rate of hate crimes against LGBT people is no higher than that against other protected minorities stuck out for me in part because a Southern Poverty Law Center analysis said the opposite (that given the proportion of the population we make up, we’re actually the most likely group to suffer hate crimes) – but some definitely is. It’s the Williams Institute that gave us such data as 1 in 4 LGBT people are people of color, and same-sex couples were identified in 99% of U.S. counties during the 2000 Census. It’s also the Williams Institute that calculated Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell cost taxpayers $500 million, and that found that counter to stereotypes, LGBT people are not more affluent than our non-LGBT counterparts.
Lately the Williams Institute has issued a series of state-specific analyses, so if you need data on LGBT people for your public education efforts or funding proposals, make sure you check them out at http://www2.law.ucla.edu/williamsinstitute/home.html
(Full disclosure: my organization FORGE recently partnered with Williams Institute in a research proposal to the National Institute of Justice.)
People always want data, especially from those who write funding proposals or suggest new programs. When it comes to the LGBT population, those numbers have been difficult to discern. A new Williams Institute brief provide a new look at this lingering question.
According to this new analysis, which averages the results of 5 U.S. studies, New Jersey is about the size of U.S. residents who claim the labels of LGB or T: about 9 million, or 3.5% for LGB and .3% (about 700,000) for T. Continue reading
In February 2011, the National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE) and the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force (NGLTF) released the largest-ever survey of transgender and gender non-conforming people, Injustice at Every Turn: A Report of the National Transgender Discrimination Survey (available at http://transequality.org/PDFs/NTDS_Report.pdf). Nearly 6,500 responded to this wide-ranging questionnaire. Here are some highlights relating to transgender and gender non-conforming people and their family members
You win some and you lose some
- 70% of children still speak to and spend time with their transgender/gender non-conforming parent
- 61% say their family relationships have slowly improved after coming out and/or transitioning
- 57% experienced some level of family rejection
- 55% of intimate relationships survive the transgender person’s coming out and/or transition (or ended for a reason other than gender)
- 55% of those who transition lose their intimate partnership
- 45% say their family is as strong now as it was before they came out
- 43% maintained most of their family bonds
- 40% said one or more relatives “chose not to speak or spend time with me” due to their gender identity/expression