5 Places Where LGBTQ People Still Face Discrimination
Every other week this administration makes headlines with proposals that will allow for further discrimination. Whether you are queer, a woman, or a person of color, you know what it can feel like to have someone judge you based on your appearance or sexual orientation. It’s important that everyone educate themselves on how to fight biases. Here are 5 places where LGBTQ people still face discrimination and 5 ways you can help.
The standard workplace is rife with discriminatory practices. For example, it’s common knowledge that women make roughly 79 cents to a man’s dollar. Incredibly, half of LGBTQ adults live in states where there are no laws banning job discrimination based on sexual orientation. In fact, the LGBTQ workforce faces such widespread discrimination at work that 21% of LGBTQ employees report that they have faced it across hiring, promotions and pay. So, how can you help? If you are in a position of power at your workplace, make an effort to expand your hiring practices in order to reflect the world we live in. When we have better representation across organizations, instances of discrimination and alienation are reduced.
School is supposed to be a place where kids can go to learn, make friends, and figure out who they are. Unfortunately, that is not the case for so many students that identify as LGBTQ.
With school curricula left up to local jurisdictions, many schools do not teach a scientifically-based or LGBTQ-affirming sex ed course.
And of course, there is still a struggle with bullying in schools (which spans much wider than the LGBTQ community) with few teachers who are properly trained to help. Yet, there is an even larger issue outside of kids bullying that lies within our government. The Supreme Court may decide anti-LGBTQ religious schools can benefit from tax credits and the overarching problem that LGBTQ students simply are not supported in many schools across the US.
But there are ways to help support LGBTQ students across the US. GLSEN works to ensure that LGBTQ students are able to learn and grow in a school environment free from bullying and harassment. Support them and help them make school safer and better for everyone.
The Doctor’s Office
The doctor’s office is a major place of discrimination for LGBTQ people. If you haven’t talked to your friends or read about it, read some of the heart-wrenching stories found on WaxOH!. You’ll read about waking up from gender-affirming surgery and being misgendered…by the nurse. You’ll read about a bisexual man who was told by his doctor to simply ‘choose’ to sleep with only women to avoid writing a prescription for PrEP. You’ll read about the horrors of having to deal with a healthcare professional who not only doesn’t understand you but judges you on how you live your life. That’s why Dating.com Group is taking this problem head-on with their campaign #WeNeedAButton. #WeNeedAButton is a campaign that urges patient matching sites (think ZocDoc and Yelp) to create a queer-friendly button, making it easier for patients to find doctors that understand their needs.
There are countless stories of LGBTQ people struggling with discrimination specifically within the technology sector. Not only within the job market but also with the technology we all use daily. Why won’t patient-matching sites create a filter that throws up relevant search results for queer-friendly doctors? What are they waiting for? The main reason for not prioritizing the needs of LGBTQ users is because there are not enough LGBTQ programmers and decision-makers. A few years back major tech companies such as Microsoft, Google, Facebook, and Amazon shared stats on the demographics of their employees. To no one’s surprise, it was largely male and white. What was left off of the stats entirely? LGBTQ people. Learn more and support: Here are 7 LGBT tech groups to follow.
This one is really a no brainer. It’s one of the most unfortunate circumstances that people who are willing to lay down their lives for us are not even able to be themselves. LGBTQ military personnel dealt with years of the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” ban. When the Obama administration ruled it unconstitutional in 2011 it was looked at as a step in the right direction. However, with a new administration comes new acts of prejudice. There was the transgender military ban, plus the Trump administration also removed mentions of “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” from executive branch guidelines on discrimination. Meaning, there is still a long way to go. Stand with LGBTQ soldiers today by supporting the Trevor Project Armed Services which advocates for regulations and policies that support LGBTQ military members and their families.
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