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Back to Section One | Back to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, September 17, 2010 - Volume 38 Issue 38
Seattle LGBT Commission announces initial survey results
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Seattle LGBT Commission announces initial survey results

by Shaun Knittel - SGN Associate Editor

On September 13, the Seattle LGBT Commission announced the preliminary results from a six-week online survey to assess the needs of the LGBT community in Seattle. According to commission officials, marriage equality, safety, and health care emerge as key concerns among LGBT Seattleites.

Nearly 1,600 people participated in the survey, which focused on housing, education, health, public safety, and community involvement.

'We had such an overwhelming response to the survey. It's inspiring that 1,600 people took the time to provide their input and feedback about how Seattle can be the best city in the world for LGBT people," said Lillie Cridland, co-chair of the Seattle LGBT Commission. "We had both multiple choice and open-ended questions on the survey, so we really have a mass of data to sort through.'

The survey, which took 10-15 minutes to complete, asked respondents to evaluate the most important issue needing attention within the LGBT community in Seattle. Participants' top three responses were marriage equality (55.5%), hate crime violence/harassment (39.0%), and healthcare (32.0%).

The survey also asked respondents about the biggest issues impacting them personally. The top three responses were healthcare (51.6%), marriage equality (49.0%), and lack of jobs in this economy (43.4%).

According to commission officials, the results of the community needs assessment will be used by the commission, City departments, nonprofit organizations, and businesses to address the issues raised by the survey.

The survey was developed in collaboration with community organizations and was promoted widely within the LGBT community. The commission has only compiled preliminary data and expects to have a more complete analysis next year, including an evaluation of how different demographic groups responded to questions. All results will be shared with the public.

"Just looking at the preliminary results, I'm certain that this information will be very helpful for us, other organizations, and the City as we plan for 2011 and beyond," said Cridland. "We look forward to using this information to bring people together and start talking about solutions."

The Seattle LGBT Commission advises the mayor, Council, and departments about sexual minority issues, recommends policies and legislation, brings the LGBT communities and the larger Seattle community together through long-ranged projects, and ensures that City departments fairly and equitably address LGBT concerns as individuals and as a protected class.

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