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Washington Health Alliance’s Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion Initiative Focus on Improving Behavioral Health for LGBTQ+ Community

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This Pride Month, the Washington Health Alliance’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Initiative is presenting a free director’s cut of the documentary Between the Shades and panel discussion to raise awareness of the inequities in behavioral health care for the LGBTQ+ community.

Joining the event on June 25th will be film Director Jill Salvino and moderator Mercer Principal Michael Garrett. The event at 12:30 pm PDT at the SIFF Egyptian Theater on Capitol Hill in Seattle is open to the public. Registration is required for both in-person and remote attendance.

Stigma and discrimination are among the reasons the LGBTQ+ community faces significant challenges in
accessing behavioral health care resulting in LGBTQ+ individuals being three times more likely to avoid health and mental health care. In the last year, 45% of the LGBTQ+ youth seriously considered attempting suicide, including more than half of transgender and non-binary youth. For those who sought counseling from a mental health professional, 48% of the LGBTQ+ youth were unable to access services. Lower rates of attempting suicide were reported by LGBTQ+ youth who were able to access services that affirmed their sexual orientation and gender identity.

Excerpts of the film will be interspersed with opportunities for the audience and panel to address the steps health plans, employers, physicians and other health care professionals can take to improve the equity of the
behavioral health system.

The Diversity, Equity,& Inclusion Initiative is sponsored by the Washington Health Alliance, a nonprofit organization working collaboratively to transform Washington state’s health care system for the better. The Alliance brings together more than 185 committed member organizations to improve health equity and health care by offering a forum for critical conversation and aligned efforts by health care professionals, health plans, purchasers, and other health care partners who are committed to the Alliance’s mission and vision.  The Alliance believes in transparency and publishes its reports on health care quality, value pricing, and overall spending to help achieve a more equitable health care system. The Alliance publishes its reports at and provides guidance for consumers at so that individuals can make informed health care decisions.

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