Pride · social media · Tobacco Policy · Uncategorized

New Tips From Former Smokers Ad Features Effects of Tobacco & HIV

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     Felecia King

    Project Specialist

   The Network for LGBT Health Equity

 
 

This week, the CDC launched the next phase of the Tips From Former Smokers Campaign, and this time they are tackling the issue of tobacco and HIV. The ad features Brian, who smoked for 30 years, and suffered a stroke as a complication of his HIV and tobacco use. (read more about Brian’s story HERE)

Smoking is especially harmful to people who are living with HIV. For example, smokers with HIV:

  • Are at higher risk than non-smokers with HIV of developing lung cancer, head and neck cancers, cervical and anal cancers, and other cancers;
  • Are more likely than non-smokers with HIV to develop bacterial pneumonia, Pneumocystis jiroveci pneumonia (PCP), COPD, and heart disease;
  • Are more likely than non-smokers with HIV to develop two conditions that affect the mouth: oral candidiasis (thrush) and oral hairy leukoplakia; and
  • Have a poorer response to antiretroviral therapy.
  • People with HIV who smoke are also less likely to keep to their HIV treatment plan and have a greater likelihood of developing an AIDS-defining condition and dying earlier than non-smokers with HIV.

(the above examples are from Aids.gov <– Click the link for more info!)

For these reasons, smoking is a significant health issue for all individuals, but it is even more of a concern for people living with HIV, who tend to smoke more than the general population. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately 19% of adults in the United States are smokers. However, the smoking rate is two to three times higher among adults who are HIV-positive.

 

SmokingLGBT    

Conferences · Philly Trans health conference · Pride · Staff/Program Updates · Updates

Welcome to our new guest blogger, reporting from Philly Trans Health Conference

We are so excited to introduce Bishop S.F. Makalani-MaHee as our newest guest blogger! Bishop S.F. will be blogging from the Philadelphia Trans Health Conference, so stay tuned!

Bishop S.F. Makalani-MaHee is a Minister/Performing Artist/Community Organizer, and is also the Founder/Chair for Black Gay Pride South Florida. Bishop is currently enjoying devolving his solo show “Bustin’ Hell Wide Open” in which he explores his experiences growing up in the Pentecostal Black Church and the projects of the Bronx and coming out as same gender loving in those environments; and now living as a transgender man.  He makes his home in the South Florida area.

Follow him on twitter at www.twitter.com/TheBishopTweets

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Data · LGBT Policy · Pride · Staff/Program Updates

PRESS RELEASE: 2014 LGBT COMMUNITY CENTER SURVEY REPORT

MAP Survey Infograph

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

With Significant Revenue Growth and Innovative Programs, LGBT Community Centers Serve Over 1.9 Million People Annually

Denver, CO & Ft. Lauderdale, FL; June 10, 2014 —Providing vital services to more than 1.9 million people annually, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community centers reported increased revenue for 2013, allowing them to develop innovative new programs to serve youth, homeless populations, and transgender populations, according to an extensive report released today.

Authored by CenterLink and the Movement Advancement Project (MAP), the 2014 LGBT Community Center Survey Report: Assessing the Capacity and Programs of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Community Centers, surveyed 111 LGBT community centers from 32 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico.

Both large and small centers reported increased revenue, for combined revenue of $138.1 million, but the biggest concerns emerging from the survey data are the challenges facing small LGBT community centers. Smaller centers, often operating in locations and communities that are least accepting of LGBT people, struggle with a chronic lack of resources and paid staff; two in three small centers rely entirely on volunteers.​  These and other report findings are summarized below.

CLIENTS & DIVERSITY

  • Participating LGBT centers serve over 37,900 individuals in a typical week and refer over 9,900 individuals to other agencies for services and assistance.
  • LGBT community center patrons are disproportionately male, people of color, transgender, and/or low income.
  • LGBT community center clientele is diverse, and community centers often offer tailored programming: 90% of LGBT community centers offer specific programming for LGBT youth, 82% for transgender people, 61% for LGBT older adults, and 48% for LGBT people of color.

“We are a small center with one part-time employee and a lot of dedicated volunteers, and we work daily to improve the quality of life for the LGBTQ and ally populations of our region,” said Jackson Jantzen, Executive Director of the 7 Rivers LGBT Resource Center located in LaCrosse, Wisconsin. “In rural and less populated regions, centers like ours are a lifeline for the community and without us, people would be very isolated and without important resources. Maintaining stable funding sources and reaching isolated community members with limited means is a continual challenge.”

SERVICES & PROGRAMS

In many regions, local LGBT centers are the only organizations serving the LGBT community, offering a variety of much-needed resources including:

  • Physical and Mental Health Programs: Large centers spent approximately 19% of their 2013 budgets on physical health programs and 17% on mental health programs, including general health and wellness programs, medical and pharmacy services, STD/HIV prevention and treatment, counseling, and facilitated support groups.
  • Information, Education and Computer Programs: 20% of community center budgets goes to information and education programming, including referrals to LGBT businesses, speakers’ bureaus, employment training/counseling, or in-house libraries. Many LGBT community centers (78%) also provide patrons with computer resources.
  • Social and Recreational Programs: LGBT community centers offer a range opportunities for patrons, including parties and dances, social groups for targeted populations, summer camps for LGBT youth, and sports leagues.
  • Arts and cultural programs: Centers often offer arts and cultural programming, such as gallery space and film screenings.
  • Community Outreach and Civic Engagement: LGBT community centers target community outreach to the general public, to schools and healthcare providers, and to policymakers in their communities, among other populations.

“At The LGBT Community Center in New York City, we’re especially excited about our new service learning projects like ROAR (Responsibility, Opportunity, Action and Results),” said Glennda Testone, The Center’s Executive Director. “We’re helping young people build workforce skills, while building their confidence to organize and take action on important community issues. It has been incredible to witness our youth grow and develop through ROAR.”

STAFFING & REVENUES

  • Revenue Growth. Both large and small LGBT centers reported revenues increases from 2012 to 2013; small centers experienced a 20% increase in revenues from 2012 to 2013, compared to a 12% increase for large centers.
  • Revenue Sources. Fifty percent of 2013 revenues of large centers were from government grants, followed by 18% from individual donors and 8% from fundraising events. Foundation funding was only 12% of center revenue.
  • Staff. Despite the increase in average center revenue, many centers still struggle with a lack of funding and resources; 21% of all surveyed centers have no staffand rely solely on volunteers; and 57% have five or fewer paid staff. Almost half of center staff (49%) identify as people of color.

Given the critical role of LGBT community centers in areas of the country with few other resources for LGBT people, small centers in particular are in critical need of additional financial support.

“The first few months we were open, people would show up and break into tears. They could not believe there was a new center in downtown Oceanside, a few hundred feet away from Camp Pendleton Marine Corps Base,” said Max Disposti, Executive Director of the North County LGBTQ Resource Center in California. “People would come in and share their stories, of when you could get beat up in the streets for being LGBT. Just five years ago, North San Diego County was not the place to be if you were LGBT. There is still so much work to do, but at least now we are more visible, more understood and respected. We are here to stay.”

 

The full report is available online at www.lgbtmap.org and www.lgbtcenters.org.

 

About the Authors
CenterLink was founded in 1994 as a member-based coalition to support the development of strong, sustainable LGBT community centers. A fundamental goal of CenterLink’s work is to help build the capacity of these centers to address the social, cultural, health and political advocacy needs of LGBT community members across the country. Now in its 20th year, CenterLink has played an important role in addressing the challenges centers face by helping them to improve their organizational and service delivery capacity, access public resources and engage their regional communities in the grassroots social justice movement. www.lgbtcenters.org.

Launched in 2006, the Movement Advancement Project is an independent, intellectual resource for the LGBT movement. MAP’s mission is to provide independent and rigorous research, insight and analysis that help speed full equality for LGBT people. Learn more at www.lgbtmap.org.

 

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To download the full report CLICK HERE!

Conferences · Presentations · Pride · two_spirit_wellness

The Network’s very own Trudie Jackson is honored as Echo Magazine’s woman of the year!

New Network Logo Symbol 3-2011
 
 
Network Steering Committee Member Trudie Jackson:
Echo Magazine’s Woman of the Year! 
Congratulations Trudie!!!
 
 
 

v236449rWe were so happy to hear that our very own Steering Committee member, Trudie Jackson, has been chosen as Echo Magazine’s 2013 Woman of the Year for her work as an advocate for the trans community and for her many contributions to the wider LGBT community!

Trudie lives in Phoenix AZ, and works on a program dealing with health issues of urban Native Americans at Native Health, an agency that provides wellness services. Upon being hired i 2004, she helped to found an LGBT employee group, and from that point on has been unstoppable in her pursuit of making sure that Native American and Trans folks are represented in all health and equality conversations.

Among her many accomplishments, Trudie worked for two years as an outreach coordinator for LGBT Youth at the Southwest center for HIV/AIDS, was the recipient of the Phoenix Pride Scholarship Fund award three years in a row, worked as assistant director for a time of This Is HOW (an agency that provides services and housing to trans individuals), and was on the board for 1 Voice Community. And of course, she is one of The Network’s Steering Committee members! 

For the past three years Trudie has helped to organize the Southwest Rainbow Gathering, which she chaired in 2012 and Scout attended and spoke at!

2014 promises to be an awesome year for Trudie- she will be graduating from Arizona State University with a bachelor’s degree in public service and public policy, with a minor in American Indian studies and a certificate in LGBT studies,a nd she is thinking that politics may be on the horizon…

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Congratulations Trudie! You are Amazing! 

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Read the full article in Echo Magazine HERE!

Funding · LGBT Policy · Presentations · Pride · Resources · Staff/Program Updates · State Work · Technical Assistance · Updates

A Year In Review: Spotlight on North Dakota Department of Health Tobacco Prevention and Control Program

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Gustavo Torrez
Program Manager
The Network for LGBT Health Equity
 
 
 

When I started working with the Network almost 4 years ago the first state I had the pleasure to visit was North Dakota. During my visit I conducted two LGBT Cultural Competency training one for their grantees, and another at their Annual Statewide Alcohol and Substance Abuse Summit. At that time they were thinking about strategies to include LGBT communities in their tobacco control work and have not looked back since. I had the privilege of going back and spoke at the 3rd annual statewide GLBTQA conference held at the University of North Dakota this past

Left to Right: Neil Charvat, Gustavo Torrez, Rep. Kayie Overson, Rep Josh Boschee, and Krista Headland
Left to Right: Neil Charvat, Gustavo Torrez, Rep. Kayie Overson, Rep Josh Boschee, and Krista Headland

April, and was overjoyed at the progress they have made over the past couple years in terms of community support for LGBT tobacco control efforts. At times we can see progress through emails and updates here and there, but to actually see the level of community support for LGBT Tobacco Control efforts was absolutely amazing. From local LGBT groups to State Representatives its was truly refreshing especially for a state like North Dakota.  Over the past couple of years work in North Dakota has not stopped, in fact the work has grown to include more and more folks in the community committed to LGBT Tobacco Control efforts in the state. Neil Charvat, Community Health Specialist with the Chronic Disease Program at the North Dakota Department of Health has truly made some huge strides in the state. Neil has been charged with the talk of LGBT inclusion efforts and has forged many partnerships which have truly shaped the direction of their efforts. Most recently, a great article was published North Dakota puts $2,500 in anti-smoking funds toward Fargo pride festival, highlighting some of these efforts.

I wanted to take a moment and showcase in depth some of the great work that has taken place over the past year, and thank Neil for his commitment to inclusion efforts in North Dakota. I am so proud of the work that he has not only accomplished, but how the Department has truly institutionalized LGBT tobacco Control efforts in North Dakota. Please read his article below as he article below –  Engaging Disparate Populations: North Dakota LGBT Communities.

Neil
 
Neil Charvat
North Dakota Department of Health
Tobacco Prevention and Control Program
Fiscal Year July 1, 2012 – June 30, 2013

Engaging Disparate Populations: North Dakota LGBT Communities

The Tobacco Prevention and Control Program (TPCP) in the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH) work to engage populations disparately effected by tobacco use on a statewide level. One of the populations identified by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) as having high tobacco use rates and being targeted by the tobacco industry is the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community.

Efforts to engage North Dakota’s LGBT communities in tobacco control efforts have been made since 2008, varying degrees of success. The main obstacle has been identifying LGBT groups in North Dakota. The NDDoH TPCP was fortunate to become involved in Fargo-Moorhead Pridefest for the first time in 2011. FM Pridefest is the largest LGBT event held in North Dakota. This initial effort was to provide NDQuits information and materials to event attendees. In 2012 the ND DoH was again invited to be a part of FM Pridefest. In July, NDQuits marketing tools were utilized at the FM Pridefest 5K Run-Walk, and that event was tobacco-free. NDQuits material and information were promoted at the FM Pride in the Park in August. ND DoH staff attended the event. The staff was able to promote cessation efforts as well as provide information about tobacco issues that directly affected the LGBT community in North Dakota.

NDDoH TPCP staff had the opportunity to meet with Julia Geigle at the University of North Dakota. Julia is a graduate student at UND working on LGBT health issues. The meeting was to discuss the issue of tobacco use in the LGBT community, and the health impacts that resulted from that use. Information on engaging the LGBT community and promoting NDQuits cessation services were provided to Julia. As a result of this meeting, Julia invited the TPCP staff to participate in a UND LGBT conference in April, 2013. NDDoH was able to involve Gustavo Torrez from the Fenway Institute in the UND Conference. Gustavo travelled to the conference to present on LGBT tobacco and health issues. Gustavo was also able to engage North Dakota legislators in attendance by providing information on LGBT health issues. The conference was well attended by the UND LGBT campus community. As a result of the success of this event, there are plans to incorporate more events like this into the newly created ND Campus Tobacco Prevention Project. This project will involve most college campuses in North Dakota.

The NDDoH TPCP will continue to engage the LGBT in future tobacco prevention work for the next fiscal year.

Cultural Competency Trainings · LGBT Policy · Pride · Resources · State Work

DO Ask Do Tell: St. Louis Veterans Hospitals initiate LGBT cultural competency training program

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Sherrill Wayland, MSW
SAGE: Services & Advocacy for LGBT Elders
Metro St. Louis
 
 
 

Five years ago when SAGE Metro St. Louis first started providing outreach and trainings, the Veterans Administration (VA) St. Louis Health Care System was one of the last places we expected to be. Fast forward to 2013 and we find the VA St. Louis Health Care System as one of the leaders in creating LGBT welcoming health care in Missouri.

In 2012, the VA St. Louis Health Care System held the first ever St. Louis Veterans PRIDE Celebration. A standing room only crowd of Veterans and employees packed the room to hear a panel discussion, in which SAGE Metro St. Louis participated. At this meeting, SAGE extended a welcome to the employees to have a representative join the Missouri LGBT Health Roundtable, as a part of the Missouri LGBT Health Access Project. In turn, SAGE was asked to join the VA St. Louis Health Care Systems, LGBT Advisory Council as an ad hoc committee member.

Over the years, SAGE has received calls from LGBT Veterans, fearful that they would not receive care from the VA if their LGBT status was known during the time when “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” was in force. We also field calls from LGBT Veterans who feel they have been treated in a discriminatory or unwelcoming fashion. Today, we have a direct linkage to the VA St. Louis Health Care System that allows us to assist LGBT Veterans with gaining welcoming care in an environment that truly honors ALL Veterans.

Over the past year, the work at the VA St. Louis has grown to include a robust offering of LGBT Health Cultural Competency Trainings provided by VA St. Louis employees and SAGE. We are currently in the process of developing a schedule of trainings for SAGE to present on a monthly basis.

With the commitment and dedication of the St. Louis VA staff, LGBT Veterans health care and access is a priority. SAGE Metro St. Louis will honor the St. Louis Veterans Administration on June 1, 2013 with the first annual “SAGE Community Cares” Award for excellence in service to the LGBT community.

The groundwork established in partnership with the VA is invaluable as we begin moving forward with sustainable policy change initiatives that will positively impact our LGBT Veterans. Like many we understand the value in building partnerships to advance our movements, and while addressing the LGBT Veterans is mandated by the federal government, having a strategic partnership established will serve as a cornerstone in advancing LGBT health inclusion efforts at both VA hospitals in St. Louis.

“Our LBGT program includes comprehensive care and ongoing education of staff and health care providers about the unique healthcare concerns of our LGBT Veteran community. We believe all staff who are knowledgeable about the health care concerns of our LGBT Veterans are better able to serve our diverse Veteran population. As the Deputy Director of the VA St. Louis Health Care System,  I am extremely proud of the commitment our providers have shown to our diverse (Veteran) patient and employee population.”      – Marc Magill, Deputy Director

Pride · State Work

Nebraska Travelogue: How did Heartlands Pride Adopt New Tobacco Control Policy?

Scout

Scout, Ph.D.
Director, The Fenway Institute’s Network for LGBT Health Equity
Ariss on left and the whole Heartland Pride board. Beth's flashing the Pride toolkit, :)
Ariss on left and the whole Heartland Pride board. Beth’s flashing the Pride toolkit, 🙂

Smokefree pride festivals are a great way to showcase our communities’ investment in keeping ourselves healthy. But as many know who’ve worked on getting their local pride’s smokefree, it can be a really long process. Habits die hard and you need to do a lot of education with the local organizers to help them understand the impact of smoking and how to transition the event to a new smokefree one. Luckily there’s a great step-by-step resource out there that Bob Gordon & others in CA developed, the Smoke-Free Outdoor Pride Event Toolkit. This was our goto resource when we presented to Interpride last year.

But sometimes locals write their own recipe for change. I am so happy to report the culmination of my Tuesday in Nebraska was a meeting with the Heartland Pride board where they agreed to a new tobacco control policy at pride!

So, what’s the Nebraska recipe for success? (please do not try this at home, these are trained professionals)

  1. Include dedicated staff time for LGBT outreach in state tobacco control efforts. Check.
  2. Hire Ariss Mendoza — a straight woman who’s had lots of experience with LGBT friends and has absolutely boundless energy
  3. Take notes (aka build relationship with policymakers by identifying something they need that you can offer) – when Ariss went to the Heartland Pride board meeting, she realized they needed a secretary, so she stepped in to take notes!
  4. Take baby steps — Ariss stepped in to take notes, but she also asked the organizers to officially partner with her tobacco-free group. They warned they wouldn’t go smokefree, but were fine with having an official partnership.
  5. Add food & some crazy outta town guy folk call an “expert” on LGBT health — Like I said my last meeting was a special presentation to Heartlands Pride board on smokefree prides. And of course since it was dinner time, Athena & Ariss picked a nice restaurant to have it at. As the board members arrived Ariss passed out the smokefree toolkits. And to my amusement, before dinner they were urging her to please apply to be a permanent board member. Everyone wants Ariss!
  6. Educate a bit, listen lots, & offer models — eventually we got around to talking about smokefree prides. In some ways it seemed such a natural outgrowth of all our talk about eating healthier, and swapping healthy recipes before. By then the Board Chair, Beth laid it out… “We can’t go smokefree in one year, but is there a middle ground?” Sure! I talked about how prides offered smokefree areas and how they sometimes rearranged their tables to offer a “wellness area”, put kid/family services there too and keep that all smokefree.
  7. Get outta the way as Pride changes their policies! — Beth and the others from Heartland Pride jumped at the ideas we laid out and ran with them. Of course Ariss agreed to organize the wellness area! We talked about maybe getting some folks from the Nebraska healthy living projects to maybe offer some exercise or healthy eating info. And the board went even further than our ideas, after discussing it they chose not to limit the smokefree space but instead limit smoking to a few designated areas! The loved how the wellness theme echoed with their pride theme, and we even figured out how to reframe their “keep hydrated” messages from the stage to larger wellness messages, so the theme will be echoed out all day. Excellent!
  8. Build support for totally smokefree pride next year — Ariss & others from the local tobacco free coalition will take a page from other’s work and get signors on a petition for pride to go totally smokefree next year. These petitions can help organizers see there’s support for the next step, a fully smokefree pride.

Again, great job all! I’d like to think I helped but frankly by the time I arrived it seemed like I was just watching two groups (pride & tobacco control) just finally agree on what they always wanted to do all along… so my hat’s off to the pride board and Ariss! In a few months every LGBT Nebraskan at pride will be able to breathe the sweet smell of change!