Alaska LGBT Community Survey: It’s not only about discrimination

Members of St. Mary's Episcopal Church in 2009 Anchorage Pride march

Members of St. Mary's Episcopal Church in 2009 Anchorage Pride march. Photo by Mel Green.

In announcing the Alaska LGBT Community Survey last Sunday, I may have given a false impression that LGBT folks’ experience of discrimination & other antigay/antitrans bias is the only thing this survey is about.

It’s not.

That’s why we’re calling for a full survey, on a full range of the questions & concerns that we LGBT Alaskans would like to know the answers to ourselves, or that we’d like our friends, families, neighbors, faith communities, workplaces, health providers, political representatives & policymakers, and fellow citizens to know about us — without putting any one of us at personal risk of discrimination or bias to have answered.

For example, one set of questions in the original One in Ten questionnaire asked respondents which religious faiths they were raised in as a children, whether they still participated in the same religious faith (and if not, why not), and how often those who participated in any religious faith attended worship gatherings.  Another set asked a range of questions about physical and emotional health, including use (or nonuse) of alcohol and drugs, use of medical and mental health providers, whether or not providers were aware of a repondents’ sexual orientation, and — if they were — whether respondents felt their providers’ knowledge improved or worsened the kind of care they received….
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