1. pertaining collectively to people who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer (or those questioning their gender identity or sexual orientation ), intersex, and asexual (or their allies).


  1. Usually LGBTQIAs, LGBTQIA's. a person in this group.

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Word History and Origins

Origin of LGBTQIA1

First recorded in 2005–10


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More About LGBTQIA

What does LGBTQIA mean?

LGBTQIA is a term that collectively represents people who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer (or those questioning their gender identity or sexual orientation), intersex, and asexual.

An alternate letter order is LGBTIQA. Terms like LGBTQIA are sometimes used in a way in which the A is said to include or stand for Alliescisgender and heterosexual people who support the people represented by the other letters. For example, an event may be labeled in a way that welcomes such allies. However, terms like LGBTQIA exist as a label for a community for those who have been marginalized and discriminated against due to their gender or sexual identity, so many don’t consider allies to be part of the abbreviation.

There are many longer variations of LGBTQIA that include letters representing those who identify in different ways, such as those who identify as pansexual, transsexual, intergender, aromantic, nonbinary, and twospirit. Common and more limited terms include LGBT and LGBTQ. Sometimes, a plus sign is added after the letters to represent any pertinent groups not represented by a letter. There is no consensus about which term is best, and others are commonly used or have been proposed.

All of these terms are most commonly used as adjectives, as in LGBTQIA rights or the LGBTQIA community.

Less commonly, such terms may be used as a noun to refer to a person who’s part of that community. When used this way, it’s typically used in the plural, as in This anti-discrimination law is a victory for all LGBTQIAs.

Example: June is Pride Month, and it’s for the entire LGBTQIA community.

Where does LGBTQIA come from?

The abbreviation LGB (for lesbian, gay, and bisexual) gained popularity in the 1980s. In the 1990s, LGBT (with T for transgender) became more widespread. Since then, additional letters have been added to be more inclusive of those who identify in ways different than those already represented.

LGBTQIA and similar abbreviations are intended as umbrella terms—meaning they’re attempts to encompass a number of different communities under one label. Of course, the more inclusive such abbreviations are, the longer they can get (often making them less practical to say or spell out). But that doesn’t negate the need for inclusivity, and such labels are still evolving as terms that describe people’s gender and sexuality continue to be defined.

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What are some other forms related to LGBTQIA?

  • LGBTIQA (alternate letter order)

What are some synonyms for LGBTQIA?

What are some words that share a root or word element with LGBTQIA

What are some words that often get used in discussing LGBTQIA?


How is LGBTQIA used in real life?

The acronym is often used in political circles in discussion of human rights. Since it’s an umbrella term, it’s more often used to talk about groups than individual people.



Try using LGBTQIA!

True or False? 

LGBTQIA is an official abbreviation and the only correct one to refer to this community.