Date of Conferral
Dr. David Mohr
Gay and lesbian individuals are marginalized, stigmatized, and can face bias in the counseling environment. There is a gap in the literature regarding research on gender, race, and multicultural competency and negative racial attitudes towards sexual minorities. This study examined whether multicultural competency (measured by the Multicultural Counseling Knowledge and Awareness Scale) moderates any associations of gender and race with attitudes towards sexual minorities (measured by Attitudes Towards Lesbians and Gay Men Scale) to examine if the role of multicultural competency differs across groups. The sample consisted of 20 White and 14 Non-White participants who were between 30-40 years of age. All counselors were licensed with 3 or more years of experience who held at least a bachelor's degree up to a doctorate. The majority of the counselors who took the survey were mental health counselors, who saw over 20 patients per month. Hierarchical linear regression analysis was conducted to examine the associations among counselors' race, gender, multicultural competency, and attitudes towards sexual minorities. The results of the study indicated that there were no significant effects amongst race, gender, and/or multicultural competency and counselor attitudes. Counselors, gay and lesbian community, and policy makers would benefit from this research. Positive change may result in counselors having a better understanding of diversity, providing a safer environment for sexual minorities, and policy makers can develop new laws. By sharing these results at professional conferences positive social change may result from a supportive environment for sexual minorities seeking counseling.