Local organizations launch survey on LGBTQ health and wellbeing

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The Pride Progress flag is displayed at Colorado Springs City Hall after the Club Q attack in November. (File photo by Bryan Oller)

LGBTQ and public health organizations in the Pikes Peak region have launched a needs assessment survey for LGBTQ adults in El Paso County, to pinpoint community challenges and determine how services and support for the community should be directed.

The survey, which was initiated by the local nonprofit Community Health Partnership, is available online here, until the end of February. It’s open to LGBTQ adults who are 18 and older, and who live in the region, according to a CHP press release.

The survey is funded by a grant from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment’s Office of Health Equity and was developed with One Colorado, a statewide LGBTQ advocacy organization, and Inside Out Youth Services, a Colorado Springs-based nonprofit that supports LGBTQ young people.

Survey questions are focused around housing statuses, food insecurity, substance use and mental health — it’s already clear from some studies that “LGBTQ+ individuals are more likely to experience homelessness, more likely to engage in substance use, and between four and five times more likely to attempt suicide throughout their lifetime,” the CHP release says.

But the results will help local organizations like CHP better target their resources, CHP says. And it comes soon after the November attack on Club Q, where a gunman killed five people in a suspected hate crime against LGBTQ people. The attack rocked the Springs’ queer community, damaged mental health and initiated calls for more support, especially from local elected officials.

“The needs assessment will evaluate health needs, health disparities, and barriers to care impacting the LGBTQ+ community,” CHP’s LGBTQ+ Health Equity Manager Rachel Keener says in the release. “Input from the LGBTQ+ community is invaluable in addressing these issues.”

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