Major new survey begins to explore what it’s like being LGBTI in Ireland

LGBTIreland, beginning today , is a major new research project exploring the mental health and wellbeing of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) people in Ireland.

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The confidential and anonymous study has been commissioned by GLEN and BeLonG To Youth Services and is being carried out by researchers from the School of Nursing and Midwifery, Trinity College Dublin.

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“Social and political attitudes towards LGBTI people have changed enormously over the last 20 years. Huge numbers of LGBTI people are openly living their lives with the support of their families, friends, communities and work colleagues. However, despite this progress we know that LGBTI people still face significant challenges being themselves, including discrimination and harassment, and that this can have a negative impact on their mental health and wellbeing”, said Brian Sheehan, Director of GLEN.

“Things are changing rapidly for LGBTI young people, as they come out across the country in greater numbers than ever before. This research will allow us to further develop our understanding of being LGBTI, and will guide us in making strategic decisions, uncovering unmet needs, and in many cases, help us discover new ideas for further effective services” according to David Carroll, Director of BeLonG To Youth Service.

“Uncovering new information about LGBTI young people is the first step in the process of empowering them in regard to their continued journey towards inclusion across many aspects of Irish society” continued Carroll.

“This major survey LGBTIreland, aims to give us a better understanding of the experience of being an LGBTI person in Ireland today. The survey asks LGBTI people about their school or college experiences; any violence or harassment they may have faced; their workplace experiences and the current state of their mental health and emotional wellbeing” said Professor Agnes Higgins, Head of the School of Nursing and Midwifery at Trinity College Dublin, who is leading the research.

“We expect that the survey results will identify priorities for those services that are key to every person’s wellbeing – education, youth, health, policing, and mental health and support services – to ensure that they understand and are responsive to the needs of LGBTI people” said Sheehan.

Any LGBTI person, currently living in the Republic of Ireland and aged 14 or over can participate in the survey at www.lgbtireland.net or it can be completed over the phone or by post.

The project is being funded by the National Office for Suicide Prevention (NOSP).

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