According to a study by The Ascent, LGBT Americans face a variety of social and institutional barriers when it comes to money. Some of the study’s findings are as follows:
Poverty is more prevalent among LGBTQ people.
A bad or very bad credit history is twice as common among LGBTQ Americans.
Nearly a quarter of LGBTQ households are uninsured or have limited access to banking services, implying that they lack full access to regular banking services.
In the MassMutual poll, 59 percent of LGBTQ respondents indicated they don’t believe traditional financial institutions want to “assist people like them.”
It’s not just money that’s a problem; LGBTQ people endure prejudice, harassment, and persecution all around the world. Although cryptocurrency is not a magic wand, blockchain technology has the potential to make a difference in a number of sectors.
1. Increased financial accessibility
Cryptocurrency is a type of digital currency that may be owned by nearly anyone. You don’t always need a credit score, and you don’t always need a photo ID to open an account on a bitcoin exchange.
Decentralized finance (DeFi) aims to do away with banks and governments as financial intermediaries. People can escape the systemic biases that exist in some traditional financial organizations as a result of this. It may also make it easier for LGBTQ Americans with bad credit to get financial services like interest-bearing savings accounts, bitcoin loans, and other things.
Risks associated with DeFi services differ from those associated with traditional banking (for example, companies are not FDIC-insured in case of failure). However, when utilized properly, they can financially empower people who are discriminated against by more respectable firms.
According to the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Intersex Association, consensual same-sex partnerships are illegal in 69 nations. Cryptocurrency can provide a form of savings and asset transfer that cannot be frozen or made available to governments for members of the LGBT community who live in countries that restrict same-sex unions.
“It is vital now to discover a mechanism to transfer money that does not require the consent of a government that could ban LGBTQ individuals,” Eloise Marchesoni, co-founder of the Blockchain consulting firm, said.
2. The LGBTQ token.
One of the developers of the LGBT token is Christophe Wittig, the founder and CEO of the LGBTQ social networking service Hornet. This cryptocurrency aspires to tap on the LGBTQ community’s economic potential while also channeling funds to fight discrimination and inequality.
One of the LGBT Token’s promising projects was to make HIV self-testing available to at-risk communities all across the world. According to LGBT Token, 20% of HIV-positive people are unaware of their status, and HIV affects gay and bisexual men disproportionately. As a result, making self-tests more accessible to people without stigma is critical.
3. Marriage certificates on blockchain.
Only 74 percent of firms in the United States offer health insurance to same-sex spouses, according to a research by The Ascent. In nations where same-sex marriage is not legal, same-sex couples find it extremely difficult to obtain the same protections as heterosexual spouses.
The Famiee Project, which began in February, tries to correct this. In nations where same-sex marriage is not legalized, it gives marriage certificates to same-sex couples. In Japan, where the concept began, the team has formed ties with insurance firms and banks. As a result, same-sex couples will be able to take advantage of some benefits, such as health insurance.
Famiee stores these digital marriage certificates on the blockchain. Each record in the blockchain registry is anonymous and shielded from unwanted access, but those with the necessary permission can view it. This means that couples can choose who has access to their data.
4. Cryptocurrency helps avoid digital surveillance
Large organizations keep a lot of information about us, from our social media feeds to our browsing histories. This can be difficult if you wish to keep your personal life or other areas of your life private.
Brave’s blockchain-based browser not only pays users for the ads they see, but it also safeguards them from digital spying. Brave claims that no personal information is stored on the blockchain.
5. Economic potential
The economic value of cryptocurrencies should also not be overlooked. In a country where stigma and discrimination prevail, an LGBT artist, for example, is unlikely to receive the same level of funding as other members of society. Artists can use non-exchangeable tokens (NFTs) to create copyrights for their digital art and sell it in a more global and diverse market.
There are a lot of systemic biases that affect the LGBTQ population. It might be a project financing application that is turned down due to unconscious biases, or a gender-sensitive banking system that asks if a bank card belongs to “him” or “her.”
There are a number of ways that blockchain’s transparent governance can help to overcome these inherent biases and contribute to a more just society.
One of the most common complaints of cryptocurrencies is that its decentralized nature makes it easy for criminals to engage in illegal activities like money laundering. However, decentralization that occurs outside of banks and governments can be beneficial.
It has the potential to empower LGBT communities, who are oppressed in a number of countries. Cryptocurrency can be used to provide economic identities, financial services, and even healthcare. No matter where they live, the combination of privacy and openness may provide the LGBTQ community with better access to more responsible services.