Shedding Light on the Economic Inclusion of LGBTI Groups in Thailand

8 June 2017

In almost every country, stigma against a non-normative sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI) fuels the social exclusion of lesbians, gays, bisexuals, transgender, and intersex (LGBTI) people. This stigma and exclusion limits their access to markets, services and spaces, and as a result, these individuals are especially vulnerable to violence, further discrimination, and diminished opportunities.

In Thailand, a growing body of research indicates that LGBTI people and sexual/gender minorities experience lower employment, education, health, housing and lower socio-economic outcomes than the general population. However, much of the existing data on SOGI issues in Thailand is qualitative and based on interviews, focus group discussions and consultations.

In an effort to close this gap, the World Bank Group, in partnership with the Faculty of Learning Sciences and Education, Thammasat University and Love Frankie, conducted research to generate new data on the economic discrimination and exclusion of the LGBTI population in Thailand. The objectives of the research were to

  • Identify the challenges and opportunities for LGBTI people
  • Uncover the experiences of LGBTI people, and
  • Compare perceptions, attitudes and behaviour among non-LGBTI people.

The World Bank approached QUO to create an info-brief illustrating the main statistics and findings from the study for the 17 May International Day Against Homophobia. QUO’s design team used an engaging colour palette drawing from the LGBT pride flag to enliven the layout. Icons were used to highlight the experiences of LGBTI in the labour market, workplace, and housing market.  These emphasise statistics such as: 77% transgender, 49% gay and 62.5% lesbian respondents said their job applications were refused because they were LGBTI, and 3 out of 4 transgender respondents reported discrimination at work or when applying for a job.

The info-brief was produced in both Thai and English to reach as wide an audience as possible and to increase awareness of the discrimination that the LGBTI population faces in Thailand.