Social and Emotional Support during the COVID-19 Pandemic by Sexual Orientation and Rurality

Date: June 22, 2022

Social and Emotional Support during the COVID-19 Pandemic by Sexual Orientation and Rurality

Rural residents face distinct risks for social isolation and loneliness, as do lesbian, gay, and bisexual (LGB) adults. This policy brief examines nationally representative data on social and emotional supports during the COVID-19 pandemic by rurality and sexual orientation.

Key Findings

  • Rural LGB adults reported the lowest levels of having their social and emotional needs met.
  • Approximately 32.7% of rural LGB adults said those needs were always met (versus 55.7% of rural heterosexual adults).
  • Rural LGB adults also reported the greatest decrease in social and emotional support during the COVID-19 pandemic, with 23.5% saying they had less support than they had a year ago.

Contact Information:

Mariana Story Tuttle, MPH
University of Minnesota Rural Health Research Center
Phone: 612.626.8401
tuttl090@umn.edu

Additional Resources of Interest:

RHIhub: Foundation for Rural Service Community Grant Program

Date: May 4, 2022

Foundation for Rural Service Community Grant Program

The Foundation for Rural Service Community Grant Program provides funding for projects in rural communities served by the National Telecommunications Cooperative Association (NTCA) members.

Funds may be used for:

  • Business and Economic Development: Entrepreneurship and job creation programs
  • Community Development: Outreach programs that promote technology learning and innovation or that encourage rural development through arts and tourism
  • Education: Education technology (such as computers and smart boards), extracurricular activities, and distance learning programs
  • Telecommunications Applications: Promoting the implementation and use of broadband-enabled applications for telehealth, education, government services, safety and security, and efficient energy distribution and use

Examples of health-related projects that have been funded include:

  • Equipment for firefighters and first responders
  • Park updates to encourage physical activity
  • Equipment for early intervention services for preschool aged children
  • Laptops for rural ambulance services
  • Purchase of mobile telemedicine carts
  • A telehealth program that concentrates on follow-up assessments for patients following an illness or new medical diagnosis
  • A Cardiac Ready Community Project that trains residents from remote communities in hands-only CPR and AED usage
  • Purchasing laptops with webcams to facilitate mental health assessments in rural emergency rooms via a telemedicine crisis center
  • Purchase of technology to assist veterans and their families enroll in federal and state benefit programs

Click to view more information on the Grant Program.