For May we wanted to expand what we have about queer health and healthcare. With increasing government interference with LGBTQ+ healthcare decisions, it's vital for people to be well informed on topics where health, justice, and queerness intersect. These books look to offer healthcare advice as well as serious thoughts on the current landscape of healthcare, and how it could be better and more complete. They give tools for readers to take better control of their own bodies and health, and make more informed decisions about a range of health topics.
Bodies and Barriers: Queer Activists on Health ed. by Adrian Shanker, provides a range of perspectives on health and healthcare topics. The essays cover mental as well as physical health, and touch on many things affecting queer people needing healthcare. The book is organized by stages of life, from very young to very old, and using the experience and expertise of many LGBTQ+ people engaged in the healthcare profession and helping people navigate it. From the publisher:
"LGBT people pervasively experience health disparities, affecting every part of their bodies and lives. Yet many are still grappling to understand the mutually reinforcing health care challenges that lead to worsened health outcomes. Bodies and Barriers informs health care professionals, students in health professions, policymakers, and fellow activists about these challenges, providing insights and a road map for action that could improve queer health. Through artfully articulated, data-informed essays by twenty-six well-known and emerging queer activists—including Alisa Bowman, Jack Harrison-Quintana, Liz Margolies, Robyn Ochs, Sean Strub, Justin Sabia-Tanis, Ryan Thoreson, Imani Woody, and more—Bodies and Barriers illuminates the health challenges LGBT people experience throughout their lives and challenges conventional wisdom about health care delivery. It probes deeply into the roots of the disparities faced by those in the LGBT community and provides crucial information to fight for health equity and better health outcomes."
Next is Care Work: Dreaming Disability Justice by Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samahasinha. This single-author collection of essays is focused more on disability care and justice. Robustly intersectional, the book is wide-ranging while also being sharp and to the point. From the publisher:
"In their new, long-awaited collection of essays, Lambda Literary Award-winning writer and longtime disability justice activist and performance artist Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha explores the politics and realities of disability justice, a movement that centres the lives and leadership of sick and disabled queer, trans, Black, and brown people, with knowledge and gifts for all. Leah writes passionately and personally about creating spaces by and for sick and disabled queer people of colour, and creative "collective access" -- access not as a chore but as a collective responsibility and pleasure -- in our communities and political movements. Bringing their survival skills and knowledge from years of cultural and activist work, Piepzna-Samarasinha explores everything from the economics of queer femme emotional labour, to suicide in queer and trans communities, to the nitty-gritty of touring as a sick and disabled queer artist of colour. Care Work is a mapping of access as radical love, a celebration of the work that sick and disabled queer/people of colour are doing to find each other and to build power and community, and a toolkit for everyone who wants to build radically resilient, sustainable communities of liberation where no one is left behind. Powerful and passionate, Care Work is a crucial and necessary call to arms."