Don’t ask don’t tell (that you’re poor). Sexual orientation and social exclusion in Italy
The role and extent of sexual orientation discrimination is the focus of a growing body of literature in economics and in other social sciences, across a wide range of social domains. This work aims at providing a holistic approach to the assessment of lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) people's life experience by developing a synthetic index of social inclusion. This is obtained by aggregating several variables pertaining to the following domains: monetary poverty, labour market attachment, housing conditions, subjective well-being, and education. We focus on the case of Italy due to the availability of a peculiar dataset that allows us to distinguish LGB people who are open about their sexuality and those who choose not to declare it. The empirical analysis highlights a lower level of inclusion of individuals in same-sex couples that cannot be explained by other observable characteristics. Thus, it may denote a lack of equal opportunities and a need for adequate inclusion policies. Being publicly open about one's sexuality is found as a crucial correlate of the welfare of LGB people, to an extent so far neglected by the literature.
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Volume (Year): 49 (2014)
Issue (Month): C ()
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