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REGISTERED NURSES’ ATTITUDES TOWARD THE PROTECTION OF GAYS AND - page 110 / 161

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correlating interpersonal contact with homosexuals and homophobia.

Hypothesis 5

An area of inquiry in this research study was registered nurses’ attitudes toward a nondiscrimination policy protective of gay men and lesbians in the workplace. The majority of nurses participating in this study were in support for a nondiscrimination policy in the workplace protective of gay men and lesbians. Treated as an independent variable in the structural equation model, support for the nondiscrimination policy was significantly reverse-correlated with homophobia. Thus, those nurses who supported the workplace policy were significantly less homophobic than those who did not support the policy.

Nurses are taught a holistic approach to healthcare (Potter & Perry, 2005). Holism emphasizes respect for the person as a whole physical and spiritual being. Because of the emphasis of this in nursing, perhaps nurses believe workplace protection policies help provide respect for homosexual persons by maintaining their integrity and individuality. However, the study of the precise relationship between workplace policies and overall homophobia is non-existent. Perhaps the relationship between homophobic attitudes and workplace policies is explained by attitude itself. In other words, heterosexuals who believe that homosexuals constitute a disadvantaged population in general society might also extrapolate this idea into workplace

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