Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2017-03-22
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor

  TODAY'S BUZZ

Sebelius remarks to National Coalition for LGBT Health
From a news release
2011-10-19

facebook twitter del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email


Remarks as prepared for delivery, October 17, 2011, Washington, DC, by Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius

Thank you VerĂ"nica for that kind introduction.

I want to thank Daniel Gould and Hutson Inniss for their leadership as well.

And I want to thank every one of the coalition members here today for your tireless work on behalf of the health and well-being of LGBT communities.

I am delighted to be here today. But I know that recently for some, there has been sadness as well with the recent loss of two of the LGBT community's strongest voices for justice.

Frank Kameny was a true pioneer whose courage and leadership shaped the gay rights movement for half a century.

And Paula Ettelbrick transformed how our nation -- and our laws -- define what it truly means to be a family.

Their contributions were enormous. And their passing is a terrible loss. It is a reminder to all of us that we build on the work of those who came before of us -- and that we have a lot more work still to do.

It has been a decade since the National Coalition for LGBT Health was founded.

Ten years ago, a group of health leaders came together to advocate for LGBT health to be included in the federal government's 10-year blueprint for a healthier nation known as Healthy People 2010.

What came out of those initial efforts was the LGBT Companion Document to Healthy People 2010 -- a report that brought together, in one place, a wide range of resources for anyone seeking to apply the Healthy People principles to their work with LGBT communities.

This was a powerful tool. And it was a challenge to the federal government to do better.

Ten years later, I'm happy to report we've made progress. When we launched Healthy People 2020 last December, LGBT health didn't need a companion document. For the first time, it was its own section.

I'm sure you agree it was about time. And it reflects the work that you, the LGBT community, and the public health community has done over the last ten years.

As a result of your work, today, we have a far better understanding that LGBT Americans face real and significant health disparities — another terrible consequence of discrimination, oppression, and social stigma.

We also know that it is possible to begin closing these disparities. The means are within our reach. It requires recognition, research, and access to resources -- specific attention from health care providers and public health professionals committed to advancing LGBT health.

And we recognize the importance of federal support. That is why over the last two and a half years, the Obama Administration has used all the tools available to us to ensure that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Americans have a chance to reach their full potential.

And I want to take a few moments now to talk about some of the progress we've made.

As you know, last year, we issued rules giving all hospital patients, including those with same-sex partners, the right to choose who can visit them in the hospital.

These rules apply to all hospitals that participate in Medicare and Medicaid and since announcing them, we've reached out to the state agencies in charge of enforcing the rules to make sure they are up to speed and fully prepared to enforce them. We see this as good health care policy but more importantly, it is a matter of simple justice.

And we didn't stop there.

The President also directed our Department to follow up with additional recommendations for action — concrete steps we can take to improve the lives of LGBT Americans.

Many of the recommendations that we ultimately gave the President came out of discussions with advocates and organizations across the country — including many of you here today. Now, many of these ideas are already being put into action.

For example, we are taking aggressive steps to protect every American's right to access our department's programs.

What that means under our new non-discrimination policy is that all HHS employees are explicitly directed to serve everyone eligible for our programs -- without considering factors such as race, national origin, color, religion, sex, disability, age, status as a parent, genetic information -- or, of course, sexual orientation or gender identity.

We also know that in order to better serve LGBT communities, we need to better understand the specific health challenges they face. And we can't do that without the good data necessary to conduct quality research.

So this summer we released an LGBT Data Progression Plan in order to begin integrating sexual orientation and gender identity variables into HHS national surveys.

And last month, we held the first of two listening sessions to begin data collection in transgender communities.

But one thing we already know is that access to community-based providers who are knowledgeable and culturally competent is important for every community. That's why we're taking steps to give community health centers the tools to double their capacity and reach underserved communities.

For example, last month our Health Resources and Services Administration awarded nearly $250,000 to the Fenway Institute in Boston to create a National Training and Technical Assistance Center to help community health centers improve the health of LGBT populations.

This will help develop curricula specifically targeted to LGBT populations.

And by working closely with state primary care associations, we expect its benefits to reach communities across the country.

We are steadily reaching more and more health care professionals and giving them better tools to support LGBT patients. But we also know that not everyone can afford to be patient in a system that is slow to change.

Chief among them are LGBT youth who are more likely to be homeless than their peers and 2 to 3 times more likely to attempt suicide. So many of our agencies have paid special attention to the steps they can take today to improve the lives of LGBT youth.

For example, we're working within our child welfare system to place LGBT foster children in loving homes. And just recently, we released a report with recommendations for providing the best possible care in shelters for homeless LGBT youth.

Whether we're changing hospital visitation rules or working to stop bullying in our schools, each of these policies touches countless people's lives.

And together, they represent an ambitious commitment to every single American to make sure that absolutely nothing stands between them and the best and safest health care possible.

That same commitment runs through the Affordable Care Act, which is steadily moving us toward a health care system that is focused on the needs of patients, not insurance companies.

The law is already protecting LGBT Americans from many of the worst abuses of the industry.

A year and half ago, insurers could cancel your coverage when you got sick just because you made a mistake on your application.

Under the Patient's Bill of Rights, this practice has been banned, along with other harmful policies like lifetime dollar limits on coverage, which often meant your benefits disappeared when you needed them most. And annual limits are going to be a thing of the past come 2014.

The Affordable Care Act is also helping millions of LGBT Americans gain access to recommended preventive care and screenings for free, including for diseases that affect LGBT populations at rates higher than other populations. This includes cancer screenings, blood pressure and cholesterol screenings, HIV testing, and contraceptives.

And as of last fall, insurers can no longer deny coverage to children because of their pre-existing health conditions — a protection that will extend to every single American in 2014.

In these ways, the Affordable Care Act may represent the strongest foundation we have ever created to begin closing LGBT health disparities.

But you know the health law remains under attack. So we need you to use your voices to make sure it remains the law of the land.

No one is in a better position to help the people who can benefit from this law's new rights and protections. And no one is in a better place to reach people with the tools and information they need to achieve their full potential.

I know most of you have been fighting these battles for a long time. And you may not have always had active partner in federal government. But that is changing.

We have come a long way in ten years but we still have a long way to go.

Our fight against HIV/AIDS is an important example.

Thirty years on, we still aren't doing enough for all the populations the disease effects. And I am especially concerned about the rising number of infections among young gay men of color.

At a time when our nation is making such important strides to break down walls of discrimination aimed at LGBT Americans, we need to do everything we can to make sure that the next generation is here and healthy to enjoy the benefits of that progress.

I want to thank you again for inviting me to speak with you this morning. And I look forward to taking a few questions.

As you have shown us over the last decade, when we come together, we can make a huge difference.

Where once we failed to study LGBT health at all, today researchers engage LGBT populations and are looking to collect the data we need to ground our work in science and shape our vision for the future.

Where once LGBT youth felt scared and alone, today we know how to build safe schools and loving homes. Where once, patients saw their rights denied and care beyond reach, today we can promise the dignity and support they deserve.

We have begun to push open doors that seemed shut forever. Looking ahead, the future gives me real hope. And I'm looking forward to working with you to make it as bright as possible.


facebook twitter del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email




Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Attorney General Madigan pushes to strengthen Illinois hate crimes law 2017-03-22
National LGBTQ Health Conference: Bridging Research and Practice 2017-03-22
City Council to open meetings for public comment 2017-03-22
Trans veteran running for board position at Illinois college 2017-03-22
MOMBIAN Adoption rules spark need for 'public outrage' 2017-03-22
Affordable Care Act before House March 23, actions planned 2017-03-21
IL Women March on Springfield April 25 for progressive agenda, responsible budget 2017-03-20
Biss announces campaign to unseat Rauner 2017-03-20
Ald. Deborah Mell's office burglarized 2017-03-20
Trump Administration Proposes Dropping LGBT Elders from Key Federal Survey 2017-03-20
IL Women March on Springfield April 25 for progressive agenda, responsible budget 2017-03-20
Organizer: Pride Parade will not become a march this year 2017-03-19
AHCA would harm LGBTs, people with HIV per Fenway Institute analysis 2017-03-17
Two Congressional bills would outlaw LGBT housing discrimination 2017-03-16
Trump's budget would hurt HIV and STDs response, national non-partisan health groups say 2017-03-16
HRC to Sec. of State: Rescind appointment of two from anti-LGBTQ organizations 2017-03-16
Texas Senate passes discriminatory anti-LGBT bill SB6, Lambda Legal responds 2017-03-15
Ways To Take Action To #ProtectTransWomen Today 2017-03-15
GUEST COLUMN Trump's America 2017-03-15
Center relaunches therapy group for LGBT violence survivors 2017-03-15
'Indivisible' event calls for action on state, federal levels 2017-03-15
Cecilia Horan talks about new judicial role 2017-03-15
Social worker to be honored as leader 2017-03-15
Chicago has an opioid epidemic, local agencies battle growing crisis 2017-03-15
EI announces legislative agenda 2017-03-15
Boston LGBTQ youth theater group first to receive White House honor 2017-03-15
Committee sends transgender ID-marker bill to House 2017-03-15
AIDS care nurse's life is rendered in comic-book form 2017-03-15
Maddow reveals Trump tax returns 2017-03-15
Report Calls for Fighting Poverty, Treating Trauma as Solutions to Violence 2017-03-15
Hate group representatives appointed to United Nations' women's rights meeting 2017-03-15
National roundup: #ProtectTransWomen, Black AIDS Institute, soccer incident 2017-03-14
NUNN ON ONE 'Fitness Marshall' weighs in on boyfriend, Britney 2017-03-14
DHS overtime policy passed, disabled and caregivers face uncertainty 2017-03-14
Equality Illinois PAC endorses in District 211 School Board Races 2017-03-13
Women's Day march defies Trump agenda 2017-03-12
Mothers speak against DHS's plan to separate families at the border 2017-03-12
Illinois Rep. Schneider co-sponsors federal LGBT housing-rights bill 2017-03-12
American Muslim Youth Launch Inaugural National #MeetAMuslim Day, 100+ locations 2017-03-11
South Dakota Governor signs anti-LGBTQ "License to Discriminate" bill into law 2017-03-10
 



Copyright © 2017 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 

Sponsor


Sponsor

About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage



About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.