Believing in Our Vision, Investing in Our Future
Guided by patient and client needs, Howard Brown Health today announced three expansion initiatives aimed at increasing our ability to provide affirming, nonjudgmental, and culturally competent health and wellness services across the City of Chicago.
A project aimed at increasing youth services appropriate for LGBTQ and unstably housed youth will be accomplished through the development of a new, permanent home for the Broadway Youth Center. To increase the availability of services for adults, seniors, and families – and reduce wait times for existing patients – Howard Brown is pursuing plans to relocate its Halsted clinic to a new location. We are also taking steps to develop an LGBTQ community center on the South Side that will house a clinic and ally organizations in a space tailored to meet the specific needs of the Black LGBTQ community and area residents.
The initiatives spring from our longstanding commitment to mobilize advocacy and services necessary to reduce the intersectional health disparities experienced by LGBTQ people. Responding to our community’s needs is a cornerstone of our mission in advocating for affordable, high-quality, and culturally competent healthcare that is accessible to all and free of stigma and discrimination.
Through our efforts, we pursue a world where healthcare is affordable, culturally competent, and convenient; and where a person’s race, ethnicity, immigration status, age, ability, gender, gender expression, and sexual orientation are honored and respected in order to enhance the quality of the care they receive.
For our organization, today’s announcement is the culmination of years-long efforts to strengthen our engagement with patients and affected communities. Though we have added clinic locations to our network over the past five years, the organization has developed just one site from the ground up – the Sheridan clinic – in its 46-year history.
The new developments, phased to open from 2021 to 2024, will help meet our five-year projected facility needs on the North and South sides of Chicago. The developments will help to adequately serve existing and future patients in a timely and comprehensive manner with integrated sexual and reproductive healthcare, primary care, dental care, behavioral healthcare, and support services.
Investing in Our Young LGBTQ Community Members
We believe that safe, affirming LGBTQ spaces are paramount for people in our community to love, heal, and grow – thereby building individual, family, and community vitality and longevity. When we moved Broadway Youth Center to its current location in 2017, we greatly expanded the program’s ability to provide basic needs, drop-in services, and primary care. Today, BYC sees more and more clients who need educational and employment services, as well as wraparound clinical and behavioral health services. The new location for BYC will further expand how we support our LGBTQ youth and provide a new horizon for our next generations of community members and leaders.
Relocating to Better Serve Our Patients
We believe all people deserve affirming care conveniently located near their homes and in local communities to build the mind, body, and soul. Our North Side locations are currently operating at or near capacity, sometimes causing patients to wait longer for appointments or walk-in slots. By moving our current location in Lakeview to a larger space, we can meet the demand for our model of affirming care and provide wraparound health and wellness services to even more people. Once completed, our new location on Halsted will greatly increase our capacity to deliver primary care and will add a new Sexual and Reproductive Health Walk-in clinic to the North Side, alleviating congestion at our flagship location on Sheridan Road.
Taking the First Steps Towards a South Side Community Center
We believe that collecting feedback and implementing ideas directly from our diverse constituents – inclusive of all gender identities, racial, ethnic, generational, nationality, linguistic, and economic backgrounds and abilities – makes us stronger. Howard Brown’s clinics in Back of the Yards, Englewood, and Hyde Park make it easier than ever for LGBTQ people living on the South Side to access care without judgement. In 2019, we served nearly 10,000 patients at these three clinics alone, with demand growing every day. To be able to meet our patients’ needs, the development of an LGBTQ center on Chicago’s South Side will first involve direct community input through a needs assessment facilitated by Pride Action Tank. The input gathered doing this process will provide critical insight into what the community needs and wants from a customized local wellness hub.
Stay tuned for more updates on these exciting and critical initiatives in expanding access to LGTBQ health and wellness services.
By broadening the reach of our services and welcoming more people into our doors, we are helping to build the foundation for a healthy and thriving Chicago.