BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



                                                                     AB 959


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          Date of Hearing:  May 27, 2015


                        ASSEMBLY COMMITTEE ON APPROPRIATIONS


                                 Jimmy Gomez, Chair


          AB  
          959 (Chiu) - As Amended March 26, 2015


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          Urgency:  No  State Mandated Local Program:  NoReimbursable:  No


          SUMMARY:


          This bill would require the Departments of Health Care Services,  
          Public Health, Aging and Social Services to include the  
          collection of sexual orientation and gender identity data in the  
          course of their current demographic data collection efforts.   








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          Specifically, this bill:  


          1)Requires collected data to be reported to the Legislature  
            during the regular process of reporting demographic data.


          2)Requires collected data to be reported to the public in  
            accordance with state and federal law, except for personal  
            identifying information, which shall be deemed confidential  
            and shall not be disclosed.


          3)Requires the specified state departments to comply as soon as  
            possible, but no later than July 1, 2017.


          FISCAL EFFECT:


          Minor costs to four state agencies to update forms and  
          information collection procedures.


          COMMENTS:


          1)Purpose.  This bill seeks to reduce health and well-being  
            disparities for LGBT communities by ensuring that sexual  
            orientation and gender identity data is collected on a  
            statewide basis by key government agencies that deal with  
            health and human services.  According to the author, "Due to  
            the systematic exclusion of data collection of LGBT  
            communities, significant disparities in their health and  
            welfare have been prolonged compared to the broader community.  
             LGBT communities face disproportionately high rates of  
            poverty, suicide, homelessness, isolation, substance abuse,  
            and violence, and low rates of health insurance. Collecting  
            voluntary date on SOGI is a necessary first step to understand  








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            the extent to which LGBT communities are experiencing  
            disparities and whether government programs are effectively  
            reaching LBGT individuals in need of care and assistance."



          2)Background. State government agencies routinely collect  
            demographic data on race, ethnicity, gender, and disability on  
            a wide variety of state forms and surveys.  The purpose of  
            this data is to help better understand disparities in  
            underserved communities.  Current law only requires any state  
            agency, board, or commission that directly, or by contract,  
            collects demographic data to separate the collection of this  
            data by major Asian groups.  The law is silent on demographic  
            data collection based on sexual orientation or gender  
            identity.  



          3)Related Legislation. AB 532 (McCarty), pending on the Assembly  
            Floor, requires any state agency, board, or commission that  
            collects demographic data to provide the option of identifying  
            as multiracial and selecting one or more ethnic or racial  
            designations.  
          





          Analysis Prepared by:Jennifer Swenson / APPR. / (916)  
          319-2081















                                                                     AB 959


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