From Lambda Legal
(New York, February 4, 2010) – Today, Lambda Legal released the first nationwide survey that examines health care discrimination experienced by LGBT people and people living with HIV.
“The results of this survey should shock the conscience of this nation and make clear that the system is broken when it comes to health care for many lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people and those living with HIV,” said Beverly Tillery, Director of Community Education and Advocacy and one of the authors of the report. “No one should be turned away or face discrimination when they are sick or seeking medical care.”
In spring 2009, Lambda Legal and over 100 partner organizations distributed a survey to LGBT people and people living with HIV across the country. When Health Care Isn’t Caring: Lambda Legal’s Survey on Discrimination Against LGBT People and People Living with HIV, is based on responses from approximately 5,000 people and provides a powerful snapshot of the experiences of a diverse cross section of members of the LGBT and HIV communities all over the country.
The survey included questions about the following types of discrimination in care: being refused needed care; health care professionals refusing to touch patients or using excessive precautions; health care professionals using harsh or abusive language; being blamed for one’s health status; or health care professionals being physically rough or abusive. According to the results, almost 56 percent of lesbian, gay or bisexual (LGB) respondents had at least one of these experiences; 70 percent of transgender and gender-nonconforming respondents had one or more of these experiences; and nearly 63 percent of respondents living with HIV experienced one or more of these types of discrimination in health care. We found that not only did sexual orientation or serostatus affect the respondents’ access to quality health care, but transgender or gender-nonconforming respondents faced discrimination two to three times more frequently than lesbian, gay, or bisexual respondents. In nearly every category, a higher proportion of respondents who are people of color and/or low-income reported experiencing discriminatory and substandard care. Close to 33 percent of low-income transgender and gender-nonconforming respondents reported being refused care because of their gender identity and almost a quarter of low-income respondents living with HIV reported being denied care.
In addition to instances of discrimination, respondents also reported a high degree of anticipation and belief that they would face discriminatory care. Overall, 9 percent of LGB respondents are concerned about being refused medical services when they need them and 20 percent of respondents living with HIV and over half of transgender and gender-nonconforming respondents share this same concern. Nearly half of LGB respondents and respondents living with HIV and almost 90 percent of transgender respondents believe there are not enough medical personnel who are properly trained to care for them. These barriers to care may result in poorer health outcomes because of delays in diagnosis, treatment or preventive measures.
Within the report, Lambda Legal provides key recommendations for health care institutions, government, individuals, and organizations to combat these issues. We recommend comprehensive cultural competency, inclusive policies, research and training for medical personnel, stronger laws, as well as advocacy and community education.
For the full report and the list of partners in Lambda Legal’s national Health Care Fairness Campaign, please visit www.lambdalegal.org/health-care-report.
The Christo-Fascist and Right Wing Bigots show their un-American colors once again by attempting to deny their fellow citizens their Constitutional rights of equality.
From The Iowa Independent
One Iowa, the state’s larges gay-rights organization, is urging members to contact their legislators in order to counter a move by conservative lawmakers to push a ban on same-sex marriage
The ban, an idea that even the most ardent supporters admit is a long shot, could not be brought to the floor of either chamber for a vote without using some sort of legislative procedural maneuver. This is because Democratic leadership in both the House and Senate have promised to block every attempt to discuss a ban, let alone allow it to come up for a vote.
According to One Iowa, gay marriage opponents are trying to circumvent leadership in the House, where Democrats have a smaller advantage.
“Right-wing extremists are resorting to underhanded tactics in an attempt to take away the freedom to marry. While legislative leadership has stood firm in support of equality, extremists are attempting to overthrow House rules and push an anti-marriage amendment to the floor,” said Brad Clark, One Iowa’s campaign director.
The group is asking members to call the capitol switchboard and e-mail legislators showing their support for same-sex marriage.
In the closing days of the 2009 legislative session, Republicans in both the House and Senate attempted numerous procedural moves in the hopes of forcing a vote on a constitutional ban on gay marriage, including attaching it to a tax proposal and the state’s Health and Human Services budget. Democrats successfully blocked the efforts.
It is still unclear what, exactly, lawmakers plan to introduce. A message to House Republican leadership by The Iowa Independent. was not returned.
The Iowa House convenes at 9 a.m. Thursday.