But if one is counting people who say they experience same-sex attraction, that figure can quickly double. Karen Parker, who runs a newly created office at the National Institute of Health that is exclusively dedicated to research on sexual and gender minorities, known as SGM. For instance, her officeвЂ”which was created because officials noticed health disparities affecting SGM and determined that the area was understudiedвЂ”cares a lot more about actions associated with health risks than political identities. What data can do.
There is no shortage of research to bolster the anecdotal stories of discrimination and outsized hardships LGBT people still experience. Studies of sample groups have found, for instance, that LGBT people face more barriers to getting healthcare than the general public and that transgender women of color are at greatly increased risk for physical assault. But experts say the true scope of those problems can only be fleshed out by large-scale data collectionвЂ”and that such information will make it a lot easier to get the resources needed to fix problems like the extremely high rates of poverty experienced by transgender people and gaps in parental rights affecting gay couples with children, particularly if the numbers have the authority of being produced by the government itself.Continue reading