Map and Expand: LGBTQ Affirming Healthcare

Garden State Equality and community partners are taking on one of the greatest civil rights challenges of our time: making sure health services actually meet the needs of LGBTQ people.

LGBTQ people need doctors, therapists, and other direct services like anybody else. Our health needs are an everyday part of our lives—and we’re not equal until we can be sure that when we go to a provider, that professional is sure to say the right things to us, ask the right questions, and provide us the comfort and care we need. LGBTQ organizations are forever putting together lists of LGBTQ sensitive providers—but we shouldn’t need to find our doctors on special lists.

Programming for NJ Healthcare Systems



Needs Assessment

Completing a needs assessment is the first step towards making your healthcare facility a more inclusive space for LGBTQ patients and families. Contact us and we’ll set up a meeting, go over a brief questionnaire, and provide an initial assessment. 

Policy Assistance

Garden State Equality provides consultation on federal and state law as they relate to the healthcare industry and SOGI (Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity/Gender Expression). We can share legal expertise in this area and help you develop and audit your policies. 

Professional Development Trainings

LGBTQ cultural competency, legal issues and policy. Topics include terminology, basics of sexual orientation and gender identity, LGBTQ patient walkthroughs/role playing with LGBTQ identities and building safe and affirming healthcare facilities. We offer trainings for clinicians and healthcare professionals, and tailor our presentations to address the needs of your facility. 

Map and Expand Provider Survey and Website 

Research shows that potential LGBTQ patients are hesitant to access healthcare due to perceived lack of LGBTQ cultural competence. By taking our provider survey, we can help address the gaps in your healthcare facility. At the conclusion of the survey, you can sign up to be on our LGBTQ affirming provider website.  

Other Speaking Engagements

Representatives from Garden State Equality are available to speak to healthcare professionals, as well as to patients and community members.

Map & Expand Partnership with Rutgers School of Public Health

Garden State Equality is partnering with the Rutgers School of Public Health to map and expand LGBTQ-affirming healthcare providers across New Jersey, and we are building a website portal where you can find easily find them.

With our Map and Expand project, we’re going to find the health service providers who treat us with the most respect, and literally map out where they are in the state. We’re going to get in touch with all of them, and—doctors, therapists, other direct service providers, and activists working together—figure out what policy changes and advocacy efforts we need to make sure all health service providers treat us with respect.

Before we can build that website, we are conducting a statewide research survey to learn where those affirming providers are and assure they are professionally and culturally competent.

If you’re a healthcare provider: click here to add your name as an LGBTQ-affirming provider—and we’ll send you more information about our research survey.

If you’re an LGBTQ patient or parent: forward this email to your provider and urge them to sign—and then click here to add your provider’s contact information so we can reach out to them as well.

LGBTQ people have specific health needs and challenges—ranging from family planning, transition-related care, mental health, sexual health, HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment, and more—but many in our community find themselves traveling out of state... or simply not getting the care they need at all.

To change that, we already provide professional development trainings around New Jersey. And our patient web portal is a critical next step to ensuring that you can easily find those affirming providers—whether you’re in Cape May, Clifton, or Camden.

If you have follow-up questions about this partnership or project, please email [email protected].

Asbury Park Community Patient Empowerment Project

GSE has received a grant from Provident Bank Foundation that has allowed us to focus on the low-income LGBTQ community of Asbury Park. To learn more, click here!