New Research: LGBT Groups Tackling Inequality and Challenging Discrimination

Monday, August 13, 2018 - 16:30

LGBT groups undertake a wide range of work to tackle discrimination and challenge inequality. Here at LGBT Consortium we were keen to understand more about how groups do this and the challenges it presents. 

Through a project funded by The Legal Education Foundation, we have been able to build a clearer understanding of how LGBT groups engage with legislation that exists to protect LGBT people’s rights when carrying out their work. 

The views of over 130 LGBT groups were gathered through an online survey, phone interviews and discussion events to enable us to explore the levels of skills, knowledge and confidence of LGBT groups when working with people around their rights. 

The research shows that LGBT community groups often undervalue the importance of their own work in tackling discrimination and inequality. Some respondents initially questioned the relevance of the survey to their work, with many reporting that they do not engage with work that challenges discrimination and inequality. However, follow-up questions revealed the myriad of ways in which even those groups with very small budgets support individuals to challenge discrimination and inequality.

The research also reveals some worrying data; 66% of LGBT groups taking part in the research reported that they are at risk of losing the legal skills, experience and expertise that enables them to support their service users. 

Some groups reported that, due to a lack of specialist services and information, they often have no choice but to signpost LGBT people to mainstream services, despite knowing that they potentially might not have their needs met fully.  

However, the landscape is not all bleak, LGBT Groups reported a pleasing level of confidence in their knowledge about LGBT rights and the legislation surrounding them. The research shows that groups taking part do not need or want to be an expert in law to run their groups, but they do need better access to information so that they can effectively signpost to people who are.

Dr Natalie Byrom, Director of Research and Learning at The Legal Education Foundation states: “We are delighted to have been able to support LGBT Consortium to produce this report, which provides valuable insight into the way in which LGBT groups understand and use the law to support their members.
The recommendations indicate a number of concrete steps that can be taken to better support LGBT groups to continue their vital work in challenging inequality and discrimination and supporting those who experience it.”

You can read the Full Report here or take a look at a Summary Report here


 

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