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Stigma, Identity, and Intersectionality

Stigma, Identity, and Intersectionality

Velez, B. L., Cox, R., & Polihronakis, C. J., & Moradi, B. (in press). Discrimination, mental health, and work outcomes among women of color: The protective role of womanist attitudes. Journal of Counseling Psychology.

With a sample of employed women of color (N = 276), we tested the associations of sexist and racist discrimination with poor work outcomes (job-related burnout and turnover intentions) and mental health outcomes (i.e., psychological distress). Drawing from the Theory of Work Adjustment, Organizational Support Theory, and scholarship on discrimination, we tested perceived person-organization (P-O) fit, perceived organizational support, and self-esteem as mediators of the associations of workplace discrimination with the outcomes. Based on intersectionality scholarship, womanist attitudes were tested as a moderator. Participants provided cross-sectional data via an online survey. Latent variable structural equation modeling results indicated that a second-order latent workplace discrimination variable yielded better fit to the data than modeling sexist and racist discrimination separately. Workplace discrimination was directly and indirectly (via the mediating role of self-esteem) associated with higher psychological distress. Furthermore, workplace discrimination was indirectly associated with poor work outcomes through the mediating roles of perceived P-O fit, perceived organizational support, and self-esteem. Lastly, moderation analyses indicated that higher womanist attitudes weakened the direct association of workplace discrimination with psychological distress.

Velez, B. L., Watson, L. B., Cox, R, & Flores, M. J. (2017). Minority stress and racial or ethnic minority status: A test of the greater risk perspective. Psychology of Sexual Orientation and Gender Diversity, 4, 257-271. doi:10.1037/sgd0000226

Latent variable structural equation modeling (SEM) was used to test expectations of stigma, internalized heterosexism, and identity disclosure as mediators of the associations of heterosexist discrimination with psychological distress and well-being. Multigroup invariance testing was used to evaluate the predictions of the greater risk perspective, which contends that racial or ethnic minority (REM) sexual minorities (a) experience higher levels of minority stressors relative to their White peers and (b) that the associations among these stressors and between the stressors and mental health outcomes are stronger for REM sexual minority people than for White sexual minority people. Participants were 813 sexual minority adults (= 318 REM; = 495 White) who completed an online survey. Results of the SEM indicated that heterosexist discrimination, expectations of stigma, and low disclosure were each uniquely related to poorer mental health (i.e., higher distress, lower well-being); internalized heterosexism’s unique asso- ciations with both mental health outcomes were nonsignificant. Expectations of stigma and disclosure (but not internalized heterosexism) mediated the relations of heterosexist discrimination with psycho- logical distress and well-being. The invariance tests did not support the predictions of the greater risk perspective. Implications of these findings for clinical work and research with racially and ethnically diverse sexual minority people are discussed.