Timeline of events related to sexual orientation and medicine
America's gay and lesbian population comprises a diverse community with disparate health concerns. Major health issues for gay men are HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases, substance use, depression, and suicide. Gay male adolescents are two to three times more likely than their peers to attempt suicide. Some evidence suggests lesbians have higher rates of smoking, overweight, alcohol use disorder, and stress than heterosexual women. The issues surrounding personal, family, and social acceptance of sexual orientation can place a significant burden on mental health and personal safety.
If you own a business or if you have a private entity, and there are rules for membership there, you have to follow the rules or you can't be a member. For example, if you come to Brigham Young University, where my children happen to go to school, there are certain things you do not do, among which is, you do not drink Coca-Cola on campus because that's against the rules. ...
These [LGBT] adolescents may experience profound isolation and fear of discovery, which interferes with achieving developmental tasks of adolescence related to self-esteem, identity, and intimacy. Nonheterosexual youth often are subjected to harassment and violence; 45% of gay men and 20% of lesbians surveyed were victims of verbal and physical assaults in secondary school specifically because of their sexual orientation. Nonheterosexual youth are at higher risk of dropping out of school, being kicked out of their homes, and turning to life on the streets for survival. Some of these youth engage in substance use, and they are more likely than heterosexual peers to start using tobacco, alcohol, and illegal drugs at an earlier age. Youth in high school who identify themselves as gay, lesbian, or bisexual; engage in sexual activity with persons of the same sex; or report same-sex romantic attractions or relationships are more likely to attempt suicide, be victimized, and abuse substances. . . . School-based studies have found that these adolescents, compared with heterosexual peers, are 2 to 7 times more likely to attempt suicide [and] are 2 to 4 times more likely to be threatened with a weapon at school.
I know that GLMA members and LGBT physicians have been treated unfairly by the AMA in the past. There is simply no excuse for discriminatory actions or exclusions based on sexual orientation or gender identity -- none. First, GLMA has opened [the AMA's] eyes to the diverse needs of LGBT patients, and second -- and just as important -- GLMA has told patients that they have the right to expect a health care system filled with openness, fairness and equality."