Local researchers asking LGBTQ parents to share experiences

The research team at the University of Illinois is conducting focus group interviews to learn about the social climate toward LGBTQ members in Champaign County. (WCCU)

Local researchers are asking LGBTQ parents to share their stories in an effort to better support the group in the community.

The research team at the University of Illinois is conducting focus group interviews to learn about the social climate toward LGBTQ members in Champaign County.

“We want to know what needs they might have, what issues might exist within the community, but also to hear the positive things about our community as well,” U of I graduate student and research team member, Jasmine Routon said.

Routon said during the 1 to 2 hour interviews, they hope to gather information on LGBTQ parents' experiences with health care, schools and housing in the community.

"[Such as] if parents are just as comfortable going to and interacting within those community institutions as an individual would be,” Routon said.

Routon said while there are local resources for LGBTQ community members, that does not mean their experiences are always positive.

"It's important so we can fix those issues,” Routon said. “Talking to community developers, talking to policymakers and seeing what areas within our community we can address."

The research team plans to conduct focus group interviews with parents or guardians of LGBTQ children in the future.

To learn more about the study, contact Routon at routon2@illinois.edu or 217-693-8450

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