Sample Best Practices for LGBT/Priority Population Inclusion

I’m in DC today, meeting all day with the Surgeon General’s 50th Anniversary Report on Tobacco (aka #SGR50) Workgroup on Tackling Disparities. We’re going through an exercise now where we’re brainstorming best practices for priority population (pripop) programming on a few different metrics. We’re doing this to try to encourage more of the #SGR50 leadership organizations to adopt these best practices.

So it has me thinking what would I list as some of the LGBT/pripops best practices in each of the five metrics we’re discussing?


  • CDC’s model of funding mainstream tobacco control work, then attaching pripop network grantees to help keep that work inclusive.
  • Directly funding LGBT/pripop community-based grantees to bring expertise into a total funding portfolio (see NM or WV as great examples).
  • The model that several governmental agencies have now used to ask for LGBT/priority population tailored activities in action plans in scored sections of incoming proposals (this is an especially great way to boost pripop work with no new dollars allocated (see details on how in next point).
  • See all the excellent ideas in the 2010 joint policy statement put out by the allied disparity networks.

Leadership development:

Internal Structure, Staffing, & Training:

  • Use Legacy model’s of doing an internal survey parsing percent of staff representing specific priority populations at both management and local levels, including surveying their satisfaction/job opportunities, and tweaking recruitment strategies to redress gaps.
  • Use NIH/CDC’s model of establishing an expert advisory body for LGBT/pripops of your inhouse self-identified staff. Use them to advise on inclusion in programmatic activities.
  • Use American Heart Association’s model of putting all staff through a cultural competency training annually. Or better yet, look at the NYS model where they fund a network of cultural competency trainers to supplement their HIV work.
  • Use Legacy’s model of developing active organizational relationships with priority population representative groups. And don’t make these one way relationships, give before you ask.
  • For LGBT, use the 1 in 25 rule for a general gauge of how welcoming your worksite is… if 1 in 25 people will disclose LGBT status to strangers, then at least that number should be openly LGBT at work.

Community Engagement

  • Use the Chicago model of developing a special workplan to address LGBT disparities. (See their LGBT Healthy People 2020 plan).
  • Use the NC Dept of Health model where all their non-LGBT staff decorate a car and participate in LGBT pride every year. (heyyyy to the “quitline ladies”, see pic of them to the right)

    The Quitline Ladies draw a crowd at NC LGBT Pride.
    The “Quitline Ladies” draw a crowd at NC LGBT Pride.
  • Use the VT Department of Health model where they a. partnered with a local LGBT organization (<– always smart) and then took it to the next level, they created a rainbow version of their DOH logo for LGBT tailored outreach

Accountability & Transparency

  • Use NM example of putting out an LGBT specific report on data collected.
  • Use the HealthLink model of putting out state tobacco report cards.
  • Use the model of the CDC Health Disparity & Inequality report model.
  • Ensure all routine data gathering collects LGBT measures. (incl. surveillance, grantee reporting, employee satisfaction, EHR, etc). Again see model on our best practices document.
  • Put up a webpage talking about your engagement in this issue, see sample from VT Dept of Health here, and HHS example here.
  • Look at the models used by the Task Force & American Federation for Teachers for frequently signing onto joint statements of interest for allied priority populations (see AFT signon to our LGBT Healthcare Bill of Rights here). This builds community strength.

Head Shot Scout 2014 lo res

Dr. Scout is the Director of LGBT HealthLink at CenterLink.

Published by Dr. Scout

Vegetarian biking small town transgender father of 3 feisty teens in real life, Director of Network for LGBT Health Equity in pro life.

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