JUST RELEASED: New Democracy Maps

LGBTQ Economic Security

LGBTQ people in the United States have the same worries as others when it comes to finding good jobs and saving for the future. But research consistently finds that LGBTQ people and their families are more likely to struggle economically, experiencing higher rates of poverty and food insecurity. While the reasons for this are complex, the discrimination LGBTQ people continue to face in many aspects of daily life—including at school, which may mean they are less likely to gain needed education; at work, which can result in unemployment or lower wages; and when seeking homes, which can result in instability—all contribute to this economic insecurity.  

Related Resources

New Brief

LGBT People in the Workplace

August 2018 - This new brief details the history, demographics and experiences of LGBT people in the workplace. In addition to outlining the barriers facing LGBT workers because of prejudice, the brief also examines the added challenges facing workers—lower wages, lack of comprehensive immigration reform, barriers to employment for individuals with a criminal record, a changing economic landscape—and how these challenges also impact LGBT employees.


The Power of State Preemption: Preventing Progress and Threatening Equality

May 2018 - The Power of State Preemption: Preventing Progress and Threatening Equality exposes the coordinated effort to limit municipalities from passing local laws, the special interests motivating these efforts, and the negative impact specifically on LGBT people. The report concludes that when preemption is used in this way to undermine people’s economic security, health, and safety, it jeopardizes local democracy and equality for all.


Paying an Unfair Price:
The Financial Penalty for LGBT People of Color

April 2015 - Systemic failures to protect some students, recognize diverse families, and protect against discrimination create a devastating cycle of poverty for America’s 3 million LGBT people of color. Learn about the economic insecurity faced by LGBT people of color.


Paying an Unfair Price:
The Financial Penalty for LGBT Women in America

March 2015 - Due to discriminatory laws and stigma, LGBT women face lower pay, frequent harassment, compromised access to health care, and heightened violence. As a result, America’s 5.1 million LGBT women are among the most at risk of poverty in America.


Paying an Unfair Price:
The Financial Penalty for Being Transgender in America

February 2015 - Transgender people in the United States face clear financial penalties and are left economically vulnerable because of discrimination and hostile educational environments. Learn more in this companion report to Paying an Unfair Price.


Google Hangout:
Paying an Unfair Price

October 2014 - Watch video of the Oct. 1 live presentation and discussion with the authors and partners on Paying an Unfair Price: The Financial Penalty for Being LGBT in America.


Paying an Unfair Price:
Full/Condensed/Summary Reports

September 2014 - Outdated and discriminatory laws have serious economic impacts, causing LGBT people to have a harder time becoming financially secure and providing for their families. Learn more in the Full Report, Condensed Version, and Executive Summary.


Paying an Unfair Price: Infographics

September 2014 - From the pages of Paying an Unfair Price comes a set of shareable infographics, including: 'A Patchwork of Legal Equality' (the Equality Wheel), 'Anti-LGBT Laws Impact Poor People the Most,' 'Poverty in the LGBT Community,' and more.


Paying an Unfair Price:
Maria's Story

September 2014 - Watch and share this short new video based on Paying an Unfair Price, and learn how Maria, a lesbian living in Nebraska, faces added costs and economic hardships because of anti-LGBT laws in her state.

Stay Informed

Be the first to know about new reports and MAP news by signing up for our newsletter

Become a Member

MAP membership and certain MAP materials are restricted to the staff and board members of LGBTQ movement organizations and/or major funders of the movement for LGBTQ equality. Click below to become a member of MAP.

Join MAP

View our privacy policy.

Sexual Orientation Policy Tally

The term “sexual orientation” is loosely defined as a person’s pattern of romantic or sexual attraction to people of the opposite sex or gender, the same sex or gender, or more than one sex or gender. Laws that explicitly mention sexual orientation primarily protect or harm lesbian, gay, and bisexual people. That said, transgender people who are lesbian, gay or bisexual can be affected by laws that explicitly mention sexual orientation.

Gender Identity Policy Tally

“Gender identity” is a person’s deeply-felt inner sense of being male, female, or something else or in-between. “Gender expression” refers to a person’s characteristics and behaviors such as appearance, dress, mannerisms and speech patterns that can be described as masculine, feminine, or something else. Gender identity and expression are independent of sexual orientation, and transgender people may identify as heterosexual, lesbian, gay or bisexual. Laws that explicitly mention “gender identity” or “gender identity and expression” primarily protect or harm transgender people. These laws also can apply to people who are not transgender, but whose sense of gender or manner of dress does not adhere to gender stereotypes.

Choose an Issue