Sexual and gender minority (SGM) populations, including lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) people suffer greater health disparity risks compared to cisgender heterosexual populations due to intersectional minority stressors, exposure to social stigma, discrimination, violence and unequal treatment and lack of culturally-competent health care. Though chronic conditions and risk factors (e.g., cardiovascular disease [CVD], obesity and diabetes) are not necessarily more common among this population, sexual minority New Mexicans have reported higher rates of asthma, smoking, binge drinking, disability, depression, anxiety, and attempted suicide, than heterosexual New Mexicans (NMDOH, 2018). Additionally, LGBTQ+ rights and human rights are under attack by the current political environment. For instance, on May 24, the Trump administration released a proposed regulation that in effect says “gender identity” is not protected under federal laws that prohibit sex discrimination in health care. This would reverse the ACA health care discrimination protections for transgender people exacerbating existing barriers to care and forcing SGM New Mexican’s to remain without needed preventative medicine or specialty treatments. To commemorate the role of the Stonewall Uprising in advancing LGBTQ+, rights and advocacy for health equity throughout New Mexico, The Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation (PIRE) and the UNM Transdisciplinary Research, Equity and Engagement Center for Advancing Behavioral Health (TREE Center) have teamed up to move “evidence to action” for advancing health equity at this year’s pride events. Join us for Pride 2019 on Saturday, June 8 in Albuquerque and on Saturday, June 29 in Santa Fe. We will be passing out infographics to raise awareness of “ HOW” we can achieve LGBTQ+ health equity including: 
  • ensuring school environments protect LGBTQ+ youth from suicide
  • supporting family and friends to advance LGBTQ+ well-being
  • preventing interpersonal violence and sexual assault
  • listening to what our bodies tell us about “trauma”
  • knowing your rights to culturally and LGBTQ+ responsive health care
  • Coming out of the “closet” with eating disorders: What are the risks and solutions?

Help us spreading the word about how research and advocacy can improve the health and well-being of LGBTQ+ communities in New Mexico.

Sources:
Addressing the Health Needs of Sex and Gender Minorities in New Mexico. June 2018. New Mexico Department of Health. Accessed May 29, 2019 at: https://nmhealth.org/publication/view/report/4514/
https://www.pire.org/Center/Detail?id=2950cf36-aa6f-46d4-84d6-5327278bca76