Survey seeks data to work towards LGBTQIA+ inclusive insurance

LGBTQIA+ advocates are seeking information on LGBTQIA+ experiences with insurance in Australia, seeking to work towards a more inclusive and accessible system.

The Victorian Pride Lobby have launched The Insurance Community Survey, the first ever survey of its kind.

Late last year a network of LGBTIQA+ employees within the insurance industry reached out to the Victorian Pride Lobby seeking to make positive changes to the customer experience of LGBTIQA+ Australians.

The pride network was inspired by the release of the Lobby’s seminal 2021 report ‘Pride and Power’, which explored the unique experiences and issues faced by LGBTIQA+ people when accessing essential services and banks in Victoria.

Spokesperson for the Victorian Pride Lobby, Nic Holas, welcomed the insurance industry taking steps to make insurance more inclusive and accessible for Australia’s LGBTIQA+ as well as taking the opportunity to recognise and highlight existing good practice.

“We know many LGBTIQA+ people in Australia face barriers getting insurance, so we hope this survey and the recommendations that come out of it will be a turning point for the industry,” Holas said.

“No-one should experience difficulties accessing insurance because of their sexuality or gender identity.”

Holas added that some of these barriers had also prevented people living with HIV from accessing insurance.

“Preliminary research conducted by The Institute of Many, Australia’s largest grassroots movement for people living with HIV, suggests that not only do some people find the questions that must be filled in problematic and triggering, but they’re also deterring some from seeking insurance altogether,” Holas continued.

“The majority of those surveyed believed that people living with HIV were excluded from insurance policies altogether. And from our discussion with the insurance industry, we know this may not be the case all of the time.”

As well as people living with HIV, research from Victoria suggests that LGBTIQA+ people generally have lower private health insurance coverage. This is particularly so for LGBT Australians with a disability, and trans women.

Trans people have reported difficulties accessing hormone therapy, facial feminisation surgery, phalloplasty, chest reconstruction, orchidectomy, vaginoplasty, speech therapy, hair removal and hysterectomy under private health insurance schemes, often necessitating travel overseas to access these procedures.

The Victorian Pride Lobby’s survey is currently open to all LGBTIQA+ Australians and is running until Friday 25th March, with a report to be released later this year.

To participate, head to SurveyMonkey.

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