HRC announced it has partnered with Cox Communications, one of the nation’s largest cable providers, to air a 30-second PSA across the country in support of LGBTQ people of color.
“As our nation continues to battle the dueling epidemics of COVID-19, violence against transgender and gender non-conforming people and racism, especially anti-Blackness, it is more important than ever to focus on maintaining good mental health, as well as reaching out to our communities to ask for and give our support,” said HRC President Alphonso David. “The LGBTQ community, and especially LGBTQ people of color, face disproportionate mental health struggles due to oppression, discrimination, increased levels of poverty and decreased access to health care. As a community, we must all do our part to support an end to these epidemics, and support one another as we do.”
The PSA, which Cox began airing across the country last week, also aligns with the start of BIPOC Mental Health Month. During this awareness month, HRC and other advocates will elevate the mental health experiences of LGBTQ Black and Indigenous people of color. We know that this community is too-often forced to face both racism and anti-LGBTQ bias, elevating stress and mental health challenges. We must ensure that all BIPOC — including those of diverse sexual orientations, gender identities and gender expressions — receive the support and resources needed to truly thrive.
HRC recognizes the particular urgency of having conversations on BIPOC mental health during these unprecedented times. While the history of racial violence in this country is tragically extensive, the hypervisibility of recent events are creating collective trauma experiences that must be addressed by the mental health field through culturally competent and intersectional resources. HRC’s recent report on the economic impact of COVID-19 shows that LGBTQ people of color have been disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic: they are more likely to have become unemployed, more likely to have their work hours cut, and are more likely to feel that their personal finances are in worse shape.
BIPOC Mental Health Month is a catalyst to begin having intersectional discussions and sharing resources that recognize the full breadth of an individual’s experiences. Advocates must continue to work toward dismantling systems of oppression that place LGBTQ BIPOC at high risk of compromised mental health.