Majority of BAME people have faced racism in LGBT community, new report reveals
The situation is particularly acute for black LGBT people: three in five (61 per cent) have experienced discrimination from other LGBT people, according to the study.
Racist language and behaviour, such as ‘No blacks, no Asians’ on dating apps leaves BAME LGBT people feeling shut out and isolated, the report says.
The research, based on YouGov polling of over 5,000 LGBT people, exposes the extent to which BAME LGBT people face discrimination based on both their sexual orientation and/or gender identity, and their race; also known as ‘double discrimination’.
“Walking into gay bars and drag queens are making jokes directed at me because I’m black on more than one occasion is pretty unwelcoming. Then shrugging it off by saying ‘I’m not racist, I have a colour TV”, said Kasim, a 25-year-old from the South East.
21-year-old Asha from the North West responded to the survey and said: “Remember that it’s not just white cis abled people who are LGBT+. I am an Arab, ex Muslim, autistic, mentally ill, poor brown girl who is also bi. No LGBT+ supports me or accommodates, I am invisible to you.”
While 28-year-old Lara, also from the North West, said: “Last year at Pride some guy bumped into me by accident and when he realised I was black he said “ew” and wiped his arm off in front of me. I don’t go out as often anymore because of this.”
The report, which is based on the LGBT experience at home and within communities, also found that more than one in ten LGBT people (11 per cent) have faced domestic abuse from a partner in the last year. A number which increases to 17 per cent of black, Asian and minority ethnic LGBT people.
The report makes several recommendations, such as ensuring more diversity in decision-making structures, commissioning anti-discrimination training, building links and partnership work with BAME and disability groups, as well as listening to and giving a platform to others.
Ruth Hunt, Chief Executive, Stonewall UK, said: ‘This research gives a worrying insight into just how serious a problem prejudice is within our community, and we need to talk about it. Users of dating apps will be familiar with phrases like ‘No blacks, no Asians’ and ‘No chocolate, no curry, no rice, no spice’ becoming the modern-day versions of ‘No blacks, no dogs, no Gypsies’.
“Both online and in their daily lives, LGBT people of colour are excluded and face stereotyping from their white peers. This leaves BAME LGBT people feeling unwelcome within the wider community,” Hunt added.
The research also found that trans people, LGBT disabled people, and those of faith were at significant risk of exclusion from other LGBT people. More than a third of trans people (36 per cent), one in four (26 per cent) LGBT disabled people whose activities are limited a lot, and one in five LGBT people of non-Christian faith (21 per cent) say they’ve experienced discrimination from within the community.
The report also found that almost one in five LGBT people (18 per cent) have experienced homelessness at some point in their lives.