Using an original survey instrument distributed online, this study evaluates and compares the social and health adaptations of LGBT+ people currently living in Mexico City to the COVID-19 pandemic.
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Photographs courtesy Christina Chica.
Christina Chica and her co-researcher, Ariceli Alfaro, are particularly interested in the role that communication technology plays in LGBT+ residents’ ability to inform themselves about the development of the pandemic as well as the role communication technology and virtual space have played in facilitating LGBT+ people’s social connectivity and health needs. They identify and compare self-reported mental and physical health before and after the start of COVID-19, healthcare strategies, and social connectivity strategies. Unlike the “natech events”— earthquakes, oil spills, etc.—with clear and immediate physically destructive effects that the social science of disaster is usually concerned with, COVID-19 is a prolonged, uncertain, and developing disaster with distinct spatial consequences. The destructive potential of COVID-19 is tied both to real-time individual decisions and to social structural contexts. The preliminary findings point to a spectrum of disaster experiences, competing understandings of quarantine, increased health issues and health concerns, concerns about the economy, and frequent technological connectivity to meet social and health-information needs—among others.
Christina Chica, UCLA
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Published: Monday, July 6, 2020