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RELEASE: New Campaign Will Connect LGBT Communities on New Health Insurance Options

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Contact: Anne Shoup
Phone: 202.481.7146
Email: ashoup@americanprogress.org

Washington, D.C. — The Center for American Progress, the Sellers Dorsey Foundation, and the Federal Agencies Project announce the launch of Out2Enroll, a campaign to inform lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender, or LGBT, communities about new coverage options available through the Affordable Care Act, or ACA, and to encourage LGBT individuals to enroll in coverage. The Out2Enroll campaign kicks off on September 12 with a briefing at the White House that will feature remarks from Senior Advisor to the President Valerie Jarrett, Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius, and LGBT health and health reform experts from across the country.

To accompany the launch, Out2Enroll released a fact sheet that provides an overview of the most important information that LGBT community members need to know about their coverage options through the new Health Insurance Marketplaces in each state.

Out2Enroll will work at the national and state levels to link LGBT communities with their new coverage options under the health reform law. The centerpiece of the campaign is a website tailored to LGBT community concerns that will include information about key issues such as same-sex partner coverage, transgender-inclusive coverage, and LGBT-inclusive discrimination protections. Out2Enroll will also work with partners such as Enroll America, Community Catalyst, consumer health advocates, and LGBT equality organizations to host regional forums and conduct state-level advocacy campaigns to educate LGBT communities about available coverage and to encourage enrollment through the Health Insurance Marketplaces.

The Out2Enroll initiative is based on a new study revealing that one in three (34 percent) lower-income LGBT adults is uninsured, and that the majority of these individuals are not aware of the new coverage options that will be available starting October 1 of this year. This research also shows that targeted assistance from consumer assistance entities familiar with LGBT community concerns will be crucial to the success of efforts to enroll uninsured LGBT individuals in coverage.

“Contrary to popular stereotypes, many LGBT people are struggling with a lack of insurance and difficulty accessing health care,” said Kellan Baker at the Center for American Progress, which commissioned the study. “The new coverage options available under the Affordable Care Act will be critical to ensuring that LGBT people can get the care they need, when they need it.”

“Like so many people across the country, LGBT community members have questions about what the health reform law means for them,” said Christopher Labonte of the Sellers Dorsey Foundation. “Out2Enroll’s targeted outreach and enrollment program will offer the kind of community-specific information and resources LGBT people need to navigate these new options.”

“Health is an LGBT equality issue,” said James Williams of Trimpa Group, a partner of the Federal Agencies Project. “Out2Enroll will help make sure not only that LGBT people and their families have legal protections from discrimination, but also that they enjoy equal access to the benefits of health reform.”

For more information about Out2Enroll and to learn more about supporting efforts to connect every American with appropriate health insurance coverage, visit www.Out2Enroll.org.

Read the fact sheet: Connecting for Coverage: 4 Things LGBT People Need to Know About the Marketplaces by Kellan Baker

To speak with an expert on this topic, please contact Anne Shoup at ashoup@americanprogress.org or 202.481.7146, or Christopher Labonte at clabonte@sellersdorseyfoundation.org or 215.514.4377.

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The Center for American Progress is a nonpartisan research and educational institute dedicated to promoting a strong, just, and free America that ensures opportunity for all. We believe that Americans are bound together by a common commitment to these values and we aspire to ensure that our national policies reflect these values. We work to find progressive and pragmatic solutions to significant domestic and international problems and develop policy proposals that foster a government that is “of the people, by the people, and for the people.”

The Sellers Dorsey Foundation is a private foundation dedicated to improving the health of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community. The Foundation supports and leads efforts to improve health outcomes among the LGBT community through public education, collaboration, and grant giving.

The Federal Agencies Project is dedicated to making federal agency policies and practices more responsive to the rights and needs of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender communities.

To speak with our experts on this topic, please contact:

Print: Katie Peters (economy, education, poverty, Half in Ten Education Fund)
202.741.6285 or kpeters@americanprogress.org

Print: Anne Shoup (foreign policy and national security, energy, LGBT issues, health care, gun-violence prevention)
202.481.7146 or ashoup@americanprogress.org

Print: Crystal Patterson (immigration)
202.478.6350 or cpatterson@americanprogress.org

Print: Madeline Meth (women's issues, Legal Progress, higher education)
202.741.6277 or mmeth@americanprogress.org

Spanish-language and ethnic media: Tanya Arditi
202.741.6258 or tarditi@americanprogress.org

TV: Lindsay Hamilton
202.483.2675 or lhamilton@americanprogress.org

Radio: Chelsea Kiene
202.478.5328 or ckiene@americanprogress.org