As per usual, the queer community is ahead of the curve.
New data from the Human Rights Campaign Foundation shows that 91% of LGBTQ+ people in the U.S. reported being fully vaccinated. That’s in contrast to the general American population, which is only 59% vaccinated according to NPR.
Only 6% of LBGTQ+ people don’t intend to be vaccinated, while 60% say they have “a great deal of confidence” in the vaccines. But our progress with COVID now may be due to our struggles in the past.
“Even though LGBTQ+ people are likely getting vaccinated at impressively high rates, the evidence suggests that the community may have also gotten COVID-19 at disproportionately higher rates and are far more concerned about the dangers of the Delta variant,” Jay Brown, the HRC’s senior vice president of programs, research, and training, told The Advocate.
“The data shows what we have long known — those living at the intersections of multiple marginalized identities bear the brunt of this pandemic,” he continued. “We are living through a global health crisis with no clear end in sight. That is why it is crucial for every person to get vaccinated and for vaccination efforts to be inclusive of marginalized communities.”
Indeed, the HRC’s research also shows that 21% of LGBTQ+ people reported having had COVID, compared to 14% of all U.S. adults. Hopefully, those days are behind us as we move forward as one of the most vaccinated demographics in America.
The HRC’s research is also noteworthy for its consideration of underrepresented communities within LGBTQ+ populations. For instance, it shows that 20% of those undergoing hormone replacement therapy are concerned about how the vaccine will affect them, as well as that 32% of LGBTQ+ adults had concerns about how the vaccine might negatively affect them due to being on medication to treat or prevent HIV.
“This research is crucial because it is the first of its kind and it achieved such a large number of LGBTQ+ participants — that allows researchers to understand COVID-19 response differences within our community by gender identity, sexual orientation, ethnicity, and generation,” said David Paisley, insights senior research director at the HRC. “The data also allows us to understand the unique concerns within our community, such as vaccine interaction concerns with HIV medications and hormone therapies.”