Successful Response on Creating Change 2011 Action Alert!

Staff in Puerto Rico: Gustavo, Emilia & Scout
Network Staff

by Network Staff

Gustavo, Emilia and Scout


We have some exciting news to share!

You may remember our action alert at/after Creating Change 2011, petitioning the CDC to include LGBT people/questions in data collection. We receiving almost 500 signatures through in-person and online petition, and we are happy to share the letter we received from CDC Director Thomas Frieden. The CDC acknowledged the gaps in research and funding, as well as clarified their committment to prioritizing LGBT data collection and funding. The letter outlined a number of projects the CDC is working on to include more research and data collection of LGBT people:

  1. The recent release of a National Health Statistics Report by the National Center for Health Statistics, which includes data on sexual identity and behavior from the National Survey of Family Growth. This report is available online at
  2. A collaborative effort between the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other agencies throughout HHS to develop and test questions on sexual orientation and gender identity in order to improve both the quality and quantity of such data.
  3. A Surveillance Summary under development at CDC for publication in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report on sexual identity and behavior among high school students using data from the Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System (YRBSS) in selected jurisdictions from 2001-2009.
  4. A review of the existing LGBT data by the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health, which will result in the generation of baselines and targets addressing LGBT health disparities through the Healthy People 2020 initiative. This process will include meetings with the LGBT data experts and stakeholders to provide transparency and opportunities for input.

To read the entire document, read the copy below or click on the link for the PDF: Frieden Letter to Network

Published by Emilia Dunham, MPP, MBA

Emilia Dunham is currently a Project Manager at MassHealth/Department of Public Health, and formerly the Project Manager of the Life Skills project at The Fenway Institute, an HIV intervention study for young transgender women. Emilia worked at Fenway for 7 years, first as a Quality Control and Regulatory Assistant mainly involved with biomedical HIV prevention trials, before serving as the Program Associate for The Network for LGBT Health Equity, a network instrumental in many national LGBT health policy improvements. She is also involved with the Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition, serving as a Steering Committee member and the Policy Committee Co-Chair, an organization largely responsible for the recent passage of the Trans Rights Bill. Additionally she serves as a member of the Massachusetts Commission on Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Youth, Co-Chair of the Recommendations Committee. Emilia received a Bachelor’s degree from Northeastern University. There she served as President of the LGBTQ student group where she planned programs such as Pride Week, Transgender Day of Remembrance, and AIDS Week. In addition, she advocated for LGBTQ inclusive policies and programming on campus such as a Gender Neutral Housing program, an LGBTQ Center and the expansion of Women’s Studies to Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies. Emilia recently earned a Master of Public Policy and Master of Business Administration in health policy and management from the Brandeis Heller School School for Social Policy and Management.

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