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Honour Project Aotearoa Online Launch

Aotearoa’s first Takatāpui and Māori LGBTQI+ study of health and wellbeing finds that improving health outcomes for Takatāpui and Māori LGBTQI- plus peoples will require our country to do more to reduce discrimination in health services and in public places.

Honour Project Aotearoa is the largest mixed-method study of the health and wellbeing of Takatāpui and Māori LGBTQI-plus. The aim of the study was to explore Takatāpui and Māori LGBTQI-plus peoples approaches to staying healthy and well in the face of a number of challenges. The study conducted 50 in-depth interviews and 368 participants completed the hour-long survey.

Today we release the study Report and the two of eight Fact Sheets.

A number of themes emerged from the study. Participants told us they wanted:

  • Strong advocacy (influence health policy and services);
  • Well-resourced, welcoming and non-discriminatory health services;
  • Mātauranga Māori-based health information and resources;
  • An end to racism, homophobia, transphobia and misogyny;
  • Supportive whānau (whakapapa whānau and kaupapa whānau), and friends;
  • To know who you are (whakapapa, whenua and whānau);
  • Somewhere to call ‘home’, enough income, to feel safe, and to have a future;
  • Networks - online and face-to-face;
  • Good role models.

One of the questions we asked our participants was what needs to happen to create supportive communities and more effective health services in Aotearoa New Zealand.

People told us about their experience of racism, of homophobia, of transphobia and misogyny. What they told us was pretty confronting! For example, 51% of our participants told us they experienced racism, twice the percentage reported by the general Māori population. 49% reported they experienced homophobia. A further 25% reported they experienced transphobia or misogyny at their GP practice. The impact of discrimination on Takatāpui and Māori LGBTQI-plus peoples’ health and wellbeing was of concern. Loneliness, anxiety and depression were experienced by the majority of participants, and it was particularly disturbing that 42% of study participants had self-harmed or attempted suicide.

We concluded that as a country, more effort must be put into eliminating the harm caused by racism, homophobia, transphobia and misogyny. While rights-based legislation is key to eliminating discrimination, there is a need to scale up rights-based advocacy, education, and information in schools, health services, workplaces, shops and restaurants, and in a number of public places.

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