A new study, published by the UCLA’s Williams Institute and the Point Foundation, found American LGBTQ+ students are more likely to be impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic in terms of hospitalisation rates and housing insecurity. and The study, titled Covid-19 and Students in Higher Education, was based on a poll of 1,079 students aged 18-40.
Trans students were 5.5% more likely to report being hospitalised with Covid-19 compared to cisgender students. 27.7% of LGBTQ+ students of colour reported that a family member had been hospitalised with Covid-19, as opposed to 23.1% of non-LGBTQ+ students of colour. LGBTQ+ students were also less likely to have access to online tuition, with 10% of all LGBTQ+ students reporting not having reliable internet and a quiet space to work, compared to 3.3% of non-LGBTQ+ students.
A further 30.6% of trans students reported lacking internet access and a study space. 65.1% of trans students said their ability to pursue their studies was considerably worse than before the pandemic, compared to 38.5% of all students. Many also experienced housing insecurity, with 30.9% of LGBTQ+ students reporting some kind of accommodation disruption compared to 16.9% of non-LGBTQ+ students. The researchers attributed these disparities to the lack of familial support for many LGBTQ+ students.
The study concluded that places of higher education should put in place greater safety measures for LGBTQ+ students, saying: “Meeting the specific needs of such students is critical to avoiding disruptions in their education and widening pre-existing education gaps.”