ASBMB supports bill that will include LGBTQ+ individuals in federal surveys

The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology endorses the LGBTQ+ Data Inclusion Act, which was introduced in the U.s. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate in June by Rep. Raúl Grijalva, D-Ariz., and Sen. Tammy Balwin, D-Wis., respectively. If passed, this bill will require federal agencies to improve their survey demographics by including sexual orientation and gender identity as a voluntary option.

This piece of legislation will ensure that LGBTQ+ individuals are included in evidence-based decision making for allocation of federal funds for resources for their health, safety and well-being.

As more cultural climate surveys are conducted to make sure that federal agencies and their funded organizations offer safe work environments, including LGBTQ+ individuals is essential.

Data that have been collected so far show that scientists who identify as LGTBQ+ are more likely to experience sexual harassment. In 2020, the National Institutes of Health released a workplace climate and harassment survey report that said individuals with gender identities other than man or woman were most likely to experience sexual harassment and that bisexual individuals are 41% more likely to experience sexual harassment compared with their counterparts with other sexual orientations.

More surveys are needed to better understand the experiences of people with intersecting identities and other issues that LGBTQ+ individuals face.

If passed, the act will allow for more targeted support to tackle issues specific to the LGBTQ+ community such as job security, sexual harassment and less adequate resources in the workplace.

The ASBMB supports this bill, as it will make sure that proper funding and resources are allocated to our members within the LGBTQIA+ community.