Mental Health Support for Gay Forced Migrants

The article titled “Facilitating Mental Health Support for LGBTQ Forced Migrants: A Qualitative Inquiry” discloses the issues this group faces and suggests facilitating measures (Kahn et al., 2018). This qualitative study examined intermediaries and obstacles to the provision of psychiatric care in Canada for forced migrants who were LGBT from the perspectives of care providers and migrants themselves (Kahn et al., 2018). The purpose of the article is to reveal how persecution elated mental hazards affect immigrants’ lives and how counselors describe challenges in their practice with displaced people.

Over the past decades, the share of the world’s population who associate themselves with the LGBTQ movement has been growing at a very noticeable pace. Some see this as signs of the increased tolerance of modern society towards representatives of sexual minorities, which allowed the latter to declare themselves boldly. There are also those who consider current trends as a symptom of impending social and demographic problems. These problems relate to the immigrants who leave their countries for political reasons and because their government persecutes them. Harassment and persecution of representatives of sexual minorities in many states reach catastrophic proportions (Kahn et al., 2018).

Attacks on members of sexual minorities continue to go unpunished. In addition, there is a tendency to deny LGBTQ people a job. Persecution of LGBT people is not only bullying, imprisonment, or death. It is a severe violation of fundamental human rights and can take various forms. Therefore, LGBTQ populations are mostly exposed to mental health issues, and counselors should be ready to work with them.

Numerous factors are contributing to the stress of LGBTQ populations when they flee to another country. For instance, resettlement brings about additional harm to mental health since it is a time-consuming process. In addition, “while navigating the resettlement process, LGBT forced migrants may also contend with homophobia and transphobia from the dominant cultural group and their diaspora communities” (Kahn et al., 2018, p. 316). Moreover, the mandate of proving that they are persecuted takes additional time and effort, contributing to more distress. It is sometimes very difficult for applicants who have lived hiding their sexual orientation to prove their LGBT identity during the hearing (Kahn et al., 2018). Hence, the article’s main idea is that advocates and counselors play a crucial role in helping forced migrants to adjust to their new environment and access various services.

The number of LGBTQ migrants is rising all over the world, especially in Canada, since the country offers political asylum to those who are persecuted in their homelands. Persecution based on sexual orientation is included in the Convention on the Rights of Refugees (Kahn et al., 2018). As a signatory to this Convention, Canada has an obligation to provide asylum to those who have a reasonable fear of becoming a victim of these persecutions.

The research’s argument is convincing because the question raised is of great importance for the LGBTQ population. Moreover, multiple studies are concerned with finding out the reasons for non-heterosexual people’s behavior after the resettlement. Researchers are trying to establish counseling agencies, develop treatment programs, and eliminate gaps in healing mentally ill displaced people (Kahn et al., 2018). Furthermore, persecution is profoundly investigated within the frameworks of different disciplines, including law, politics, psychology, and others.

As a result, the article has the potential of being applied to the research field and can be used in combination with other studies to provide a broader understanding of the problems raised. For instance, it can be used in comparative research to emphasize the differences between counseling services in Canada and any other country. Additionally, it can have a practical implementation in terms of a precise organization providing advocates for LGBTQ migrants. It means that a company can consider this study and use it as a recommendation for facilitating advocating and counseling services.

The primary strength of the article is that it analyzed both counselor and LGBTQ migrant perspectives because they shed light on the situation. It implies that not solely homosexual or transgender immigrants suffer from a lack of mental health support. Social service workers cannot be fully accounted for services accessibility. Another advantage of the study is its clear statement of the mental problems the majority of the victims encounter and specific barriers why they reject to attend a counselor.

These are shame and stigmatization of mental disorders, healthcare provider’s competency, resilience manifestation, and community connection healing (Kahn et al., 2018). What is more, these the characteristics of these categories were vividly described, and the sample size allowed for an in-depth study of each one (Kahn et al., 2018). In general, the research answers the posed questions and aligns with its main idea.

On the downside, the article does not provide any quantitative data; however, it does not impede understanding the described phenomenon. Moreover, “a diverse array of service providers was sampled across several disciplines” (Kahn et al., 2018, p. 323). It is a significant limitation for the study since it does not utterly allow for specific consideration of a client’s case in terms of one discipline. In addition, the sample of participants was relatively small, which reduced the size of the issue and its diversity. Finally, the research was geographically limited to Canada, which did not allow for a thorough investigation.

One of the significant questions raised in the study refers to the impediments of stable counseling services provision for forced immigrants. In addition, the article identified that “sexual orientation and gender identity categories also played a role when facilitating referrals” to psychologists (Kahn et al., 2018, p. 322). While presenting evidence-based details on the barriers to accessing social and healthcare services, the researchers avoid providing recommendations regarding treating such patients. As seen from the study, forced immigrants are mentally vulnerable, and they need to be treated once the problem is identified (Kahn et al., 2018). Even though unique organizations exist, there is no promotion of such services in the Canadian communities where LGBTQ refugees reside. Hence, the issue of counseling treatment and its spread was not mentioned much in the paper.

In summary, the article deals with a highly acute issue that the LGBTQ community is currently facing almost worldwide. Search for political asylum due to gender issues has never been this vital to some people since they become persecuted for who they are. Hence, the research suggested that Canada was home to homosexual or transgender refugees; however, its social services lack proper counseling departments. In the meantime, counselors are crucial for assisting forced migrants as they severely suffer from mental disorders during their resettlement process. The article answers all of the posed question and provides relevant and up-to-date content.


Kahn, S., Alessi, E. J., Kim, H., Woolner, L., & Olivieri, C. J. (2018). Facilitating mental health support for LGBT forced migrants: A qualitative inquiry. Journal of Counseling & Development, 96(3), 316–326. Web.

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PsychologyWriting. 2023. "Mental Health Support for Gay Forced Migrants." January 25, 2023.

1. PsychologyWriting. "Mental Health Support for Gay Forced Migrants." January 25, 2023.


PsychologyWriting. "Mental Health Support for Gay Forced Migrants." January 25, 2023.