Intersecting racism and homonegativism among sexual minority men of color: Latent class analysis of multidimensional stigma with subgroup differences in health and sociostructural burdens

Soc Sci Med. 2022 Jan;293:114602. doi: 10.1016/j.socscimed.2021.114602. Epub 2021 Nov 25.


Rationale: Applying an intersectional framework to quantitative public health research among Black and Latino sexual minority men requires analysis that considers interlocking, multidimensional systems of racist and homonegative oppression that fundamentally subvert health. In this study, person-centered methods reflected the complexity of intersecting stigma and how subgroups experience that intersection differently.

Methods: Data were from a cohort of 435 Black and Latino sexual minority young men (mean age = 22.3 years) in the Healthy Young Men's Cohort Study in Los Angeles, United States. Participants provided data semiannually on five occasions spanning 24 months from 2016 to 2019. The marginal approach to longitudinal latent class analysis was used to identify latent classes indicated by multidimensional experiences of racism (e.g., police harassment, workplace discrimination, sexual objectification) and homonegativism (e.g., violence, family rejection, identity concealment) during the transition to adulthood. Associations between sociostructural burdens (e.g., socioeconomic status, food insecurity, unstable housing) and class incidents were investigated. Prevalence of mental health care needs, chronic health conditions, and overall self-reported health were compared among classes.

Results: Five latent classes were identified: Minimal Stigma (26% of person records), Select Social Stigma (22%), Homonegativism (17%), Multiform Racism (24%), and Compound Stigma (11%). Sociostructural burdens were generally associated with 1.69-3.75 times higher odds of Select Social Stigma, Homonegativism, Multiform Racism, and Compound Stigma class incidents relative to Minimal Stigma. The Compound Stigma class had the greatest sociostructural burden, highest mental health care needs, and highest odds of sleep and gastrointestinal disorders, but classes did not differ in overall self-reported health.

Conclusion: These results exemplify how sociostructural burdens are interconnected with intersectional stigma experiences that together erode the health of Black and Latino sexual minority young men.

Keywords: Discrimination; Homophobia; Intersectionality; Latent class analysis; Mental health; Physical health; Racism; Socioeconomic status.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cohort Studies
  • Humans
  • Latent Class Analysis
  • Male
  • Racism* / psychology
  • Sexual and Gender Minorities*
  • Skin Pigmentation
  • Social Stigma
  • Young Adult