Arcus releases research on relationship between black, LGBT communities


WASHINGTON, D.C. -

On June 22, the Arcus Foundation hosted a panel discussion at the Center for American Progress focused on fostering a more meaningful and strategic relationship between the LGBT and black communities. Panelists included Cornell Belcher, Dr. Michael Eric Dyson, C. Nicole Mason, Rashad Robinson and Hilary O. Shelton; the panel was moderated by the Washington Post's Jonathan Capehart.

"Both the LGBT and African-American communities are committed to fighting discrimination," Fred Davie, interim executive director and senior director of Social Justice and LGBT Programs for the Arcus Foundations, said. "It is on this ground that we can build a lasting coalition to ensure that no American - regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity - is denied his or her rights."

Arcus also released comprehensive national research previously conducted by Brilliant Corners Strategies along with a memo based upon a current survey from the Washington Capital Beltway region, which focused on discrimination as the common foe for black Americans and the LGBT community.

Black Americans readily acknowledge its broad impact on both communities, and those surveyed in the beltway are nearly as likely to say that gays and lesbians are as discriminated against as they are. A 44 percent plurality say gays and lesbians are discriminated against "a lot" and 24 percent say somewhat. Thus, they strongly support language around fighting for equality with gays and lesbians: 64 percent agree African Americans should unify with the LGBT community in order to be more effective in advancing everyone's rights.

The Arcus Foundation is a leading global philanthropic funder advancing pressing social justice and conservation issues, specifically focusing their work on LGBT equality and preserving the world's great apes and their habitats. For more information, visit http://www.arcusfoundation.org.

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