Homophobia is a significant barrier to HIV diagnosis, treatment, and prevention, and a critical public health issue. Homophobia and heterosexism interfere with appropriate health care access and services for LGBT individuals, feed support for counterproductive abstinence-until-marriage programming, fuel antigay social policies and other violence, and otherwise marginalize gay people of all ages. Studies consistently demonstrate that homophobia contributes to the spread of HIV and that internalized homophobia increases HIV risk. The Resource Bank provides access to information on issues related to homophobia and HIV, including discrimination, stigma, sexuality education, and access to care.
HIV/STD Risks in Young Men Who Have Sex with Men Who Do Not Disclose Their Sexual Orientation, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
This study demonstrates how homophobia creates a significant health hazard and directly undermines important public health initiatives. One impact of homophobia is that many men who have sex with men, particularly young and minority men, do not disclose their sexual orientation in order to avoid social isolation, discrimination, abuse, and violence. These young gay and bisexual men may be at higher risk for HIV infection as a consequence of low self-esteem, depression, and lack of peer support and related services available to those who are more open about their sexual orientation and identity. The data summarized in this report found, among other things, that non-disclosing MSM are less likely than their disclosing counterparts to access HIV testing services and related health care. Click here to download.
THE FINE PRINT
The Proposed HHS Rule for Health Care Providers: When "Conscience" is Code for Intolerance
by Alison Mehlman
CHLP Director of Planning and Policy Research
The introductory language accompanying the proposed rule explicitly states that the regulation "does not limit patient access to health care." But how can it not? More