HRC and PSB Research Release Data on the Economic Impact of COVID-19 on the LGBTQ Community

by Elizabeth Bibi

New polling shows the disproportionate economic toll the pandemic has taken on the LGBTQ community.

Today, HRC Foundation  released new data outlining the economic impact of COVID-19 on the LGBTQ community. The research, released in partnership with PSB Research, shows that LGBTQ people are more likely to have experienced a cut in work hours, are more likely to feel their personal finances are in worse shape due to the pandemic, and are more likely to be taking steps to actively prepare for the virus.  They are also more likely to trust public health officials and are less likely to trust President Trump’s leadership.

“It is unfortunately not surprising to see that the LGBTQ community is facing adverse economic impacts due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” said HRC President Alphonso David. “This new data bears out our initial predictions that LGBTQ people were likely to face greater economic hardship, and is more proof that the most marginalized communities are the most at risk. We have seen the health impact of this virus on communities of color, and we now have the data to show how the LGBTQ community is struggling. For those of us at the intersections of these identities, it is even more profound. We must take this moment to fight for the resources to ensure that communities most impacted can weather this storm.”

“The COVID-19 pandemic has shined a light on many unfortunate realities we face in our society, as the virus has delivered disproportionate impact across various communities, including LGBTQ people,” said Peter Horst, CEO of PSB Research. “ It’s yet another reminder of the importance of allowing data to speak the truths we need to hear in order to address our challenges, seize our opportunities and move forward together as a nation.”

The data shows that:

  • 30% of LGBTQ respondents have had their work hours reduced, compared to 22% of the general population
  • 20% of LGBTQ people say their personal finances are “much worse off” than they were a year ago, compared to only 11% of the general population
  • LGBTQ people are twice as likely as the general population to think their finances will be much worse off a year from now, 10% to 5%
  • 42% of LGBTQ people have adjusted their household budgets, compared to 30% of the general population
  • 56% of LGBTQ people trust the World Health Organization (WHO) compared to 35% of the general population and 55% trust the CDC, compared to 46% of the general population.
  • Only 14% trust President Trump as a source of information, compared to 22% of the general population
  • Strong majorities of LGBTQ people agree that we should expect more of both the federal government (93%) and employers (83%) during this time compared to 85% and 81% of the general population respectively

Read the full report at this link.

The new data builds on HRC’s previously released report, “The Lives and Livelihoods of Many in the LGBTQ Community are at Risk Amidst COVID-19 Crisis,” published in March. That report showed that LGBTQ people face both greater health and economic risks from the virus. They are less likely to have health coverage, are more likely to smoke and have asthma, and have a variety of chronic illnesses.  They are also more likely to work jobs in highly affected industries, often with more exposure and/or higher economic sensitivity to the COVID-19 crisis.

In response to the economic hardships facing the LGBTQ community, HRC is sharing resources to help people get through the pandemic. HRC is hosting a webinar on the newly enacted paid leave and unemployment benefits on Friday, April 24 at 1:00 PM. If interested in attending Friday’s webinar, please RSVP for the webinar at this link.

Health & Aging