Key issues in the “rainbow community”

According to the Human Rights commission of Australia, there is a lack of comprehensive, publicly available data available to LGBTI+ people, making it difficult to estimate the total LGBTI+ population in Australia. There are no firm figures for Australia’s intersex population. However, they guesstimate that around 11 per cent of the Australian population is made up of diverse sexual orientation and gender types.

Key issues for LGBTI+ Adults

  • A large number of LGBTI people hide their sexuality or gender identity when accessing services (34 per cent), at social and community events (42 per cent) and at work (39 per cent).
  • Transgender males and females experience significantly higher rates of non-physical and physical abuse compared with lesbians and gay men.
  • Gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people are three times more likely to experience depression compared to the broader population.

Key issues for LGBTI+ Youth

  • Young people aged 16 to 24 years are most likely to hide their sexuality or gender identity.
  • LGBTI young people report experiencing verbal homophobic abuse (61 per cent), physical homophobic abuse (18 per cent)
  • Other types of homophobia (9 per cent), including cyberbullying, graffiti, social exclusion and humiliation.

Key issues for LGBTI+ Students

  • 80 per cent of homophobic bullying involving LGBTI young people occurs at school and has a profound impact on their well-being and education.
  • Around 61 per cent of same-sex attracted and gender-questioning young people said they experienced verbal abuse because of their sexuality, while 18 per cent reported experiencing physical abuse.
  • Young men (70 per cent) and gender-questioning young people (66 per cent) were more likely than young women (53 per cent) to experience verbal abuse.

The ABS report that;

The number of same-sex couples has more than tripled between 1996 and 2011. Despite progress in LGBTI+ rights and more recently, changes to the marriage act, many Lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and intersex (LGBTI) people in Australia still experience discrimination, harassment and hostility in many parts of everyday life; in public, at work and study.

In 2011, there were around 6,300 children living in same-sex couple families, up from 3,400 in 2001. Most of these children (89 per cent) are in female same-sex couple families.

Intersex people are people born with physical, hormonal or genetic features that are neither wholly female nor wholly male, or a combination of female and male, or neither female nor male.[5] As with the general population, people with intersex variations have a broad range of gender identities and sexual orientations.

Estimates range from one in 2,000 births to four per cent of the population however the Organisation Intersex International Australia (OII Australia) recommends a mid-range figure of 1.7 per cent of all births.

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