Uniting, Engaging, and Empowering LGBTQ+ People

Our United Way and Funded Partners Are Improving Prevention, Equity, and Access to Health Services

It’s Pride Month! What a great opportunity to promote and encourage our support for all LGBTQ+ people in Broward County. LGBTQ+ people in the community, and those who love and support LGBTQ+ family members and friends, know the progress toward equality and inclusion is still ongoing.

The official Pride Day is celebrated on June 28, and it marks the date when the first Pride march was held in New York City in 1970 — the one-year anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising. Of course, different communities around the world celebrate Pride Day on different days throughout June.

For us at United Way of Broward County, Pride Month is a time of celebration, reflection, and action. Fort Lauderdale ranks at the gayest mid-size city in the U.S., and Broward has more same-sex couples or households than any other county in Florida. We recognize the well-being of Broward’s LGBTQ+ residents has a huge impact on the well-being for our entire community.

Consider these stats:

  • 52% of LGBTQ+ people have experienced depression.
  • 20% of LGBTQ+ women are living in poverty.
  • 1 in 8 LGBTQ+ people have experienced unequal treatment from healthcare staff.
  • 1 in 8 LGBTQ+ people aged 18 to 24 have attempted to end their life.
  • 22% of LGBTQ+ people earn less than $12,000 per year.

For more than 85 years, United Way of Broward County has been committed to fighting for the Health, Education, and Financial Prosperity of EVERY person in our community. As a part of our commitment, we are dedicated to ensuring social equity and inclusion as well as dismantling all forms of prejudice and discrimination.

Pride Month is for everyone to embrace who they are. And while we too celebrate and participate in pride parades, parties, workshops, concerts, and countless LGBTQ+ events, we recognize Pride Month as time to re-affirm our care for the well-being of our lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender neighbors — ensuring they can thrive with long, healthy, economically stable lives.

LGBTQ+ residents often hide their identity when seeking help from a non-LGBTQ+ social service organization — and our United Way wants to change this outcome. One way we are helping to ensure equal and fair treatment for LGBTQ+ residents is funding several partner agencies across Broward County.

Our funded partners are improving the quality of life for individuals through a range of services, such as medical care, housing assistance, mental and behavioral health, access to healthy food, and more. In addition to providing paths to wellness for LGBTQ+ people, our partner agencies welcome people of all backgrounds, genders, races, and sexual orientations — serving individuals with no income and no insurance as well as individuals who are fully insured and have income.

Similar to the goals of our United Way, the goals of our partner agencies are to support the health, stability, and opportunities of each individual in need. With these diverse partnerships, our United Way has seen great traction in increasing prevention, education, and the number of individuals in need receiving care as well as reducing stigma in the LGBTQ community. Together with our community partners, we are creating change, improving outcomes, and saving lives.

“Pride Month is a celebration of self-expression, resiliency, hope and much more. It is a powerful platform to advocate for the inclusion and equity for people who have been historically marginalized. LGBTQ+ individuals frequently face multiple layers of discrimination in society, and research shows the LGBTQ + community is among the most at-risk when it comes to behavioral health,” says Latrice Sampson Richards, LPC, LMHC, director of Health Initiatives at United Way of Broward County.

“At United Way of Broward County, we are very intentional about providing the essential support, programs, and resources for all in need. For me, both professionally and personally, Pride Month means love — the people I love, those who love me, family, friends, neighbors, coworkers, and our entire community. It is a call for everyone to stand against hate and systemic discrimination. Every day, our teams at United Way take actions to remove barriers, uplift people in need, and create safe, stable environments of care.”

Of course, we’re thrilled to be marking another year of honoring Pride Month and everyone in our LGBTQ community. All of us at United Way of Broward County are 100% committed to an inclusive, diverse community — one where everyone is visible, authentic, and supported.

We want to see how you’re getting into Pride this month. Share your support — and your pics! — on our United Way’s social channels with the hashtag #PrideMonth.