Equality should be a right and not a prize to be won. Unfortunately in our society, it is difficult to discern when and where equality is sufficient. Thus, our society is intrinsically unequal. Campaigns such as the Human Rights Campaign (often denoted by a gold equal sign on a blue background) attempt to promote equality for the LGBT community.
LGBT stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender. Often members of the LGBT community are stigmatized and discriminated for their life choices. They are placed in a position of inequality and lower status in comparison to the heterosexual norm. Such stigmas result in a fear of health care due to policies, which often discriminated against members of the LGBT community. This prejudice of the health system resulted in uncomfortable encounters with medical professionals, which proved inadequate and often resulted in avoidance of health care.
October 2013 efforts were made to improve the quality and availability or access to health care for the LGBT community. It is an effort to combat the stigmatization and discrimination (and on occasion criminalization) associated with LGBT health procedures. This in turn would assist in decreasing Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI) transmission among the community. For example, in 2008 the CDC reports 63% of syphilis cases occurred in homosexual and bisexual men. This is a result in part of insufficient health care and in some cases insufficient availability of health care. However, please remember that STI’s are not solely for members of the LGBT community – anyone practicing unsafe sex can be the unfortunate recipient of an STI. Therefore it is important to practice safe sex whenever a sexual encounter is likely to occur.
The move towards universal health services for hetero-normative communities and LGBT communities alike is a momentous step. It is an inch towards equality that is incredibly important for public health and the health of individuals in the LGBT community. That said, it is best to keep it “Safe and Sexy” for any person- so don’t forget that Tang provides safer sex supplies for a small fee so take advantage of it!
~ “Bondage” Brittany