Friday, March 24, 2017

Written Out

When we try to pass legislation or seek grants one of the questions that we face is how many people does this affect? We use various sources to answer these types of questions; we use the 2015 U.S. Transgender Survey, the Census, and other government research to justify our needs. But when surveys and other researchers don’t ask questions it becomes harder for us to validate the needs of the community.
Federal surveys trim LGBT questions, alarming advocates
ABC News
By Matt Sedensky
March 20, 2017

LGBT advocates are questioning the Trump administration's quiet deletion of questions on sexuality from two federal surveys.

Combined with the withdrawal of another planned survey evaluating the effectiveness of a homelessness project for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth, the moves have alarmed watchdogs who worry they may point to a manipulation of government data collection to serve the ideology of a government they view as hostile to their causes.

"In an age when LGBT rights are such a part of the national discussion, the Trump administration is choosing to not only ignore us but erase us from the discussion," said Laura Durso, vice president of the LGBT Research and Communications Project at the Center for American Progress, a nonprofit liberal advocacy group. She worried officials might be rolling back such data collection elsewhere.

Each year, a survey done by the Department of Health and Human Services gathers data from those receiving transportation, homemaker and meal services, visiting senior centers, or taking part in other programs funded by the Older Americans Act. A draft of this year's National Survey of Older Americans Act Participants, released this month, removes a single query asking whether a respondent is gay, lesbian, bisexual or heterosexual from a battery of demographic questions.

A second HHS-sponsored survey, the Annual Program Performance Report for Centers for Independent Living, gathers feedback on counseling, skills training and other services provided to the disabled. A revised draft posted four days after President Donald Trump's inauguration included a question on sexual orientation, but the survey was subsequently edited, with the deletion of the sexuality question the only apparent notable change.
This could cause us grave consequences; with lose of funding for many LGBT programs and identifying our needs.

It also marginalizes use by denying our existence and I have to wonder if we will be even counted in the next Census.

This afternoon I am going to court.

I am giving Cultural Competency training to state judges and their support staff.

Update 8:20 PM

The bill banning Conversion Therapy was voted out of committee and the next stop is the floor of the House

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