Award-winning doctoral candidate selected as the 2017 Lesbian Health Fund grant recipient

November 3, 2017
Casey Hall

Casey D. Hall, a doctoral candidate at the Emory University Rollins School of Public Health, has received funding from the Lesbian Health Fund (LHF) for work related to his dissertation, titled "A Mixed Methods Study to Examine Identity, Discrimination and Intimate Partner Violence Disparity in Bisexual Women in the American South."

Hall initially became interested in studying intimate partner violence in bisexual populations when viewing results from the 2010 National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey, which showed bisexual women are almost twice as likely to experience intimate partner violence in their lifetimes as lesbians and heterosexual women. 

"There is very little research on bisexuality in public health overall," says Hall. "I've been doing research on gay and bisexual men for several years, and working on intimate partner violence for the past five years. Given my expertise and interest in these areas, it seemed that there was this huge void I could help fill." 

Hall's qualitative pilot study—which he used in his application for the LHF grant—took a maximum variation sampling of 23 bisexual men and women across metro Atlanta and gathered their experiences of discrimination and intimate partner violence. Hall was selected to present his pilot data in a session titled, "Intimate Partner Violence in Vulnerable Communities" at the 2017 American Public Health Association's annual meeting in Atlanta, November 4-8.

For his dissertation, Hall plans to build upon the qualitative portion of his pilot study and add a mixed-methods study with in-depth individual interviews addressing sexual identity formation and relationship history coupled with a quantitative survey that will target bisexual women in the Southern census region.

Michael Windle, PhD, professor at the Rollins School of Public Health and member of Hall's dissertation team says, "This essential research will focus on critical factors, such as biphobic discrimination and social isolation that may be subsequently targeted in interventions to reduce the high rates of intimate partner violence among bisexual women." 

Hall is also a recent winner of the inaugural Durfee Goodman Student Paper Award for his paper titled, "Minority Stress and Intimate Partner Violence among Bisexual Men and Women in the U.S. South." The award, presented by the Family Violence Prevention Caucus, recognizes "excellence among students and recent graduates in the field of family violence and prevention research."

About the Lesbian Health Fund

LHF is a program of the Gay and Lesbian Medical Association. Founded in 1992, the LHF has awarded more than $860,000 for research grants focused on lesbian health. LHF selects two to three people nationally on an annual basis to receive funding. This year, in honor of the victims of the Pulse nightclub shooting, preference was given to research focused on societal and domestic violence affecting sexual minority women or girls.