Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority Conducting LGBTQ Survey

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The Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority is seeking the public’s help in conducting a survey into violence done to the LGBTQ community. The survey may effect how federal funding is dispersed to the state to combat hate crimes.

ICJIA Center for Victim Studies Manager Jaclyn Houston-Kolnik describes how the survey came about. “We are talking about emotional or physical harm that someone may have experienced, so that could look like maybe child abuse, abuse by a parent or caregiver, or by an intimate partner which would be intimate partner violence, so a variety of traumatic experiences that individuals may have had. From that we decided to build out a research agenda to really understand the needs of LGBTQ victims of crime, to better tailor services to understand how the system is currently navigating the impact that crime has on them and whether or not those needs are being met.”

Research indicates LGBTQ individuals experience higher rates of crime—specificallyhigher rates ofviolent crime.ICJIA researcherscollaborated with LGBTQ service providers and advocates to design a survey for LGBTQ individuals who have experienced harm .The survey covers a range of topics, including stressful experiences, disclosure of victimization, and need for and receipt of services after experiencing harm.

Last year, the ICJIA was responsible for disbursing $51.8 million in funds to victim service providers across the state. The 45-60 minute survey can be taken by paper or online. Participants will be screened online or by phone before taking the survey. Respondents will receive a $10 gift card for their participation. For more information or to take the survey, go to: http://www.icjia.state.il.us/research/lgbtq.