© 2023 NPR Illinois
The Capital's NPR News Service
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Agency's Survey On Harm Seeks LGBTQ Participants

Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority

An Illinois agency is conducting a survey to gauge violent crime against LGBTQ  individuals.

The Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority points out research has shown a higher incidence of violence against those who identify as LGBTQ.  That’s according to the agency’s Jaclyn Houston Kolnik. Twenty percent of hate crimes reported in 2015 were related to sexual orientation or gender-identity bias.

“LGBTQ individuals talk a lot about how — when they do seek help — they have very negative responses that they've received, as well as supportive responses," she said. "So that's our hope is to kind of continue to expand this and better understand the needs of LGBTQ victims of crime.’’

Aisha Davis is with Howard Brown Health, which serves an LGBTQ clientele. She says the survey will lead to a better understanding of the community. 

“Just the gathering of information about violent crime against LGBTQ people or the community at large helps support our understanding of the different hardships that LBGTQ people face regularly. And it also gives us a tool or resource to help educate more people about what the community faces,’’ she said.

Davis says she is glad the survey request is throughout Illinois because it should return information outside the Chicago area. That’s where most supports are located.

Maureen Foertsch McKinney is lead editor of Illinois Issues' feature articles, working with freelance writers, and covering the equity beat. Maureen joined the Illinois Issues in 1998 as projects editor. Previously, she worked at three Illinois daily newspapers, most recently the suburban Chicago-based Daily Herald, where she served stints as an education reporter and copy editor. She graduated in 1985 with a bachelor's in journalism. She also has a master's degree in English from the University of Illinois at Springfield.
Related Stories