Monday, May 16, 2011

Updates from Nat. Coalition for LGBT Health

Register Now for the 2011 National LGBTI Health Summit
We are just 60 days away from the 2011 National LGBTI Health Summit on July 16-19, 2011, in Bloomington, Indiana. Register now to take advantage of the low $150 registration cost, thanks to collaborations with Positive Link (a program of Indiana University Health Bloomington Hospital), the City of Bloomington, and Indiana University. The conference offers CHES credits for public health professionals and a broad range of innovative workshops, plenaries, networking, organizing, and social activities to meld our "rainbow alphabet" together around our work in the field of LGBTI health. The 2011 National LGBTI Health Summit is dedicated to preserving and improving the emotional, physical, spiritual, mental, and social health and wellness of LGBTI people. The theme of this year’s summit is "At the Crossroads," which emphasizes the summit’s mission to reach members of LGBTI communities who are marginalized and experience health disparities unique to race/ethnicity, age, and disability; as well as disparities on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender. Register now!

New LGBT-Inclusive Regulations from Department of Housing and Urban Affairs
Stable and affordable housing is a major component of good health and wellbeing for everyone, including LGBT people. Among other benefits, stable housing can help reduce substance use, lower risk of HIV infection, and improve mental and physical health. Earlier this year, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) proposed regulations banning discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity in its core federal housing programs. The Coalition strongly supports the new regulations and submitted comments recommending a broader and more inclusive definition of family and asking that the proposed ban on discrimination be extended to include perceived as well as actual sexual orientation and gender identity. We applaud HUD for its commitment to helping make stable and affordable housing accessible for LGBT people and their families.

New LGBT-Inclusive Regulations from Department of Labor
Like housing, regular employment and a workplace free of discrimination and harassment is a crucial factor in quality of life for LGBT people. Employment is particularly important for health because employer-based health insurance is a cornerstone of the US health system. Recognizing this, the Department of Labor joined the Department of Health and Human Services in revising its equal employment opportunity policy to include gender identity as well as sexual orientation. The Coalition welcomes the new policies and looks forward to continuing to work with agencies such as the Departments of Health and Human Services, Labor, and Housing and Urban Affairs to create and implement policies that help LGBT people and their families lead safe and healthy lives.

LGBT Families Matter
Same-sex couples live in almost every county across the United States, and more than one million of these couples are raising children. These families need the same protections as any other family to ensure that parents and partners can fulfill their commitment to keeping each other and their children safe and healthy. Check out our new blog post at MomsRising Blog about what the Affordable Care Act means for LGBT people and their families. Then head over to the National Partnership for Women and Families to read more about how paid sick days standards help LGBT families.

All of this and more can be found at
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