International Development, Community and Environment (IDCE)

Date of Award

8-2018

Degree Type

Research Paper

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Community Development and Planning (CDP)

Department

International Development, Community and Environment

Chief Instructor

Dr. Laurie Ross

Second Reader

Jena Bauman Adams

Abstract

This research examined what support, services, and programming existed at the intersection of sexual health and LGBTQ identities in Worcester MA. The data analyzed were interviews with professionals in sexual health or LGBTQ related fields as well as the public websites of sexual health or LGBTQ organizations. The researcher examined this data, along with literature on the rise of sexual health and LGBTQ communities, to understand (1) how inclusive sexual health resources in Worcester were and (2) what themes still need to be addressed to make gender and sexuality minorities comfortable seeking sexual health medical aid. The findings indicated that Worcester has made much progress towards inclusion but must focus specifically on trans* inclusion and on a general culture shift through trainings and programming in all organizations. From these findings, the researcher provides recommendations to strengthen sexual health advocacy work in Worcester for Worcester Impact on Sexual Health (WISH).

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