November News: The Thin Time

 Hello Good People!

 
This edition of my newsletter has so much content that I will keep my deep thoughts relatively short. I do want to share, however, that I have been so energized by vulnerability in the last few weeks. Either I forgot that vulnerability could be so inspiring, or I never thought of it in this way. Beginning my fellowship, and experiencing the gratitude and discomfort of finding myself in exactly the right place at exactly the right time to have my creativity and my politics challenged in exactly the right ways, has given me a completely new appreciation for being vulnerable and opening my mind and my heart and my body to what is. 
 
This weekend I also had the opportunity to attend a conference in St. Paul, Minnesota on Overcoming Racism. It was an intense weekend on a number of levels, and I came away with an incredible resource for teaching African American history, which I share below. But for me, by far and away the most important take away was recognizing my own ignorance. In the last year I have developed a workshop on Resisting Racism and I have been very lucky to have some incredible teachers and resources in this process. But this weekend an awareness dawned on me: that I have been taught, and I have taught others, to think about race and racism as primarily a white people/black people issue. Now, obviously I know that race and racism goes well beyond white folks and black folks. But in the same way that we tend to oversimplify just about everything, we oversimplify the problem of racism as being between binaries when we can easily identify ourselves in one or both of them. 
 
The conference I attended, however, focused strongly on the horrendous genocide of Native Americans, and the continued struggle of Native Americans and American Indians to regain and/or retain their land. Throughout both days of the conference, I found myself continually shocked and ashamed by how little I knew of these completely current issues, and I felt very keenly my responsibility as an anti-racist facilitator to build my knowledge. As I returned home and felt the wholeness of my life out in the woods, I began to understand how pivotal land and belonging are, both to that wholeness and to this struggle we are all in - the struggle to not only survive these awful times, but to do so in communion with one another.
 
And so, ever in the spirit of building knowledge, I offer these incredible items that have come to me through the many networks I participate in - a new resource for teaching and learning about black people, a challenging documentary about death row, classes on herbs, a conference on activist scholarship, a queer poetry revival, and a report on violence in and against the LGBTQ community. I hope that there is something useful for you here. And as always, if there is something you find that you think I should share, send it to me!
 
Today is election day. It is also All Souls Day, the Day of the Dead. In Irish tradition, this time of year is the thin time, the time when the ancestors come near. Today I will take some time in silence to reflect on the fact that this country was built on the backs and from the blood of children, mothers, grandmothers, fathers, and grandfathers who were massacred and enslaved by occupiers that could not see the value of their living, and could not truly see the value of the land. 
 
In this edition of Iambrown:
  • The African American Registry
  • Support The Road to Livingston, A Documentary about Death Row
  • Herb Class Series at The Commons, Brooklyn w/ Lauren Giambrone of Good Fight Herb Co.
  • Abriendo Brecha VIII: Eighth Annual Activist Scholarship Conference
  • Black Queer Poets Embark on Regional 'Salon-Inspired Tour'
  • National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs MEDIA RELEASE
 


----
The African American Registry
 
The African American Registry, found at www.aaregistry.org, is a non-profit education organization and web resource that includes hundreds of hours of filmed oral histories with elders, professionals, youth, and others, captured in the service of giving voice to the black experience and assisting educators in incorporating black history into all parts of their curriculum. Right now, black history is primarily taught in February, and primarily taught about the civil rights movement and the figureheads we feel comfortable with. This resource shifts the paradigm, and the Registry offers low-cost training to K-12 teachers who wish to learn more about its use. Check it out and pass it on!
 
----
Support The Road to Livingston, A Documentary about Death Row
 
My dear friend Sally Bergom is working on a documentary about the death row in Texas. The Road to Livingston follows several people affected by death row, and deals with what happens to people when a loved one is sentenced to death. Sally and her team are trying to raise money to complete the film. Please visit this website,  http://www.indiegogo.com/The-Road-to-Livingston?i=pite, to donate any amount, and watch the incredibly moving trailer. Please also feel free to send the trailer to others and offer feedback, particularly if you have experience in the prison system.

----
Herb Class Series at The Commons, Brooklyn w/ Lauren Giambrone of Good Fight Herb Co.

The Commons Brooklyn (www.thecommonsbrooklyn.org) is hosting a 3 part herbal series in November led by farmer & food justice activist, Ben Schwartz, and herbalist & community health educator and organizer, Lauren Giambrone. Participants can take individual classes or sign up for the entire series. 

Urban Herb Walk
saturday, nov. 6th / 12-2pm / $15-25 suggested, $60 for all 3 classes

Realize the wealth of the medicinal plants of Prospect Park with two guides who have more than a decade of experience! This plant walk will focus on learning how to identify medicinals growing within an urban setting, while discussing how these plants contribute to our health and well-being. Bring a notebook and wear appropriate clothing for being outdoors for 2 hours. Meet at Grand Army Plaza entrance to Prospect Park.

Home Sick : herbal & at home remedies for the cold and flu season
wednesday, nov. 10th / 7-8:30pm / $15-25 suggested, $60 for all 3 classes

This class will explore remedies to support the immune system during the cold & flu season, as well as to combat and relieve symptoms when we fall ill. With a hands-on approach and a focus on popular education, participants will share their strategies for staying well and leave with tools (and herbal medicinal recipes!) to keep them healthy and thriving during the winter months. 

Herb Justice : supplying tonic herbs for those without health insurance
wednesday, nov. 17th / 7-8:30pm / $15-25 suggested, $60 for all 3 classes

 

This class will profile several gentle herbs that are great tonics for folks suffering from diabetes, high blood pressure, toothaches, insomnia and lung conditions.  Among the herbs we will profile are Mullien, Burdock, Nettles, Lemon Balm and Spilanthes.

about the teachers

Ben Schwartz is a grower and food justice activist specializing in medicinal herbs and teas. He founded and currently co-runs Wassaic Community Farm now in its third year, located in Wassaic, NY. He works with farmers’ market customers and CSA members both locally and in the South Bronx to supply their herbal needs and address issues of food justice. He first started working with wild herbs as a teenager under John Young, the first student of Tom Brown at the Wilderness Awareness school. Ben led his first wild and medicinal plant walk at 18 and has learned from many herbalists—from the late Frank Cooke “Green Man” to Robert Eidis of the North Carolina Goldenseal and Ginseng Farm. Ben has grown and harvested herbs from the South Bronx to Honduras, as well as the Harlem Valley, NY. wassaiccommunityfarm.wordpress.com.



Lauren Giambrone is an herbalist practicing western herbal medicine with a harm reductionist approach. In 2008, she apprenticed at the Northeast School of Botanical Medicine and interned at the Ithaca Free Clinic, an integrative community health clinic offering free health-care services to all. Lauren has assisted an acupuncturist & herbalist in clinical practice, provided harm reduction, nutrition and wellness services to homeless youth in lower Manhattan, and assisted the medicinal herbs growing effort at Wassaic Community Farm. For the past four years, she has also been organizing with the Rock Dove Collective, a community health-exchange network that works to transform how health care is accessed. Lauren recently moved to a farm in the Hudson Valley where she continues to wildcraft and grow medicinal herbs, offer consultations and workshops, and co-host a radio show discussing health and the politics of healing. She recently started a small herbal medicine company, Good Fight Herb Co., which can be found at stores and farmers’ markets in Brooklyn, Bronx, Queens, Millerton and Hudson, NY, and online at www.goodfightherbco.com. Lauren believes strongly in the importance of self-care and the role that herbal medicine plays in creating access to health services and education.

 

----
Abriendo Brecha VIII: Eighth Annual Activist Scholarship Conference


Sponsored by the University of Texas at Austin Division of Diversity and Community Engagement Community Engagement Center
February 17-19, 2011
The Texas Union
 
Abriendo Brecha is an annual conference at the University of Texas at Austin dedicated to activist scholarship; i.e. research and creative intellectual work in alignment with communities, organizations, movements, and networks working for social and economic justice. Abriendo Brecha VIII calls for a renewed discussion on the meanings and practices of activist scholarship, particularly as it relates to solidarity between groups and overcoming power inequalities through alliance. Some themes for this year’s conference include: struggles over land, resource distribution, gentrification, prisons, cross-racial alliance, and immigrant rights. 

Abriendo Brecha VIII is a unique opportunity for coalition building across geographic, political, and national spaces, as well as a forum to present engaged academic work in solidarity with communities at the local, national and international level.  Solidarity, as a key theme, will both guide submissions as well as structure the nature of the conference.  Presentations will consist of action-oriented discussions, panels, interactive workshops, performances, and film.  This is an opportunity to meet, exchange experiences, and create local and cross-border connections with others working at the intersections of grassroots organizing and intellectual production. 

We welcome the participation of activists, community members, artists, high school students and those not specifically connected to academia. Abriendo Brecha is free and open to the public. 

Proposal submission deadline: November 15, 2010. 
For proposal instructions and submissions please visit: www.utexas.edu/diversity/abriendobrecha/
Contact AbriendoBrecha2011@gmail.com with any questions. 


----
Black Queer Poets Embark on Regional 'Salon-Inspired Tour'

LOVE the poet, Venus Thrash, and J. Pope take four cities by storm in November with a set of poetry, music, and more. Known as “THE REVIVAL”, the tour begins in Washington, DC, then heads out to Baltimore, Philadelphia and Brooklyn. The spoken word concerts will be hosted in four private residences, resurrecting the salon concept and breaking the envelope of safe space for today's queer artists and allies.

The Revival offers a unique experience with featured poets and musicians. Catered by local chefs in each city, the atmosphere is filled with good words and good music. Guests will walk into a home, be welcomed by ‘ushers’ and enjoy a service hosted by Jade Foster, whose “Black Church Maraca” open mic series served as a launch pad for this effort. "With Black Church, poets all over DC opened their homes up to complete strangers so we could all have that opportunity to share,” says Foster. “The Revival plays on that idea, offering a chance for people to sit down and listen, get up and move."

Offering food, drinks, as well a vending opportunities for local artists, each city’s event will feature a local poet, including New York’s Yvonne Fly, Baltimore’s Queen Earth and Philly’s Ms. Wise.

The Revival Tour Schedule:
November 11, Washington, DC.
November 12, Philadelphia.
November 13, Brooklyn.
November 14, Baltimore.
Each show starts at 7pm.

Complete information is available at cereusrevival.tumblr.com; tickets are on sale at cereusrevival.eventbrite.com.

For more information about The Revival, please contact: Tierra Rich at cereusarts@gmail.com

---
National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs MEDIA RELEASE

October 26, 2010
Media contact: Sue Yacka 212.714.1184 x 26
syacka@avp.org

REPORT ON LESBIAN, GAY, BISEXUAL, TRANSGENDER AND QUEER (LGBTQ) DOMESTIC/INTIMATE PARTNER VIOLENCE IN THE UNITED STATES RELEASED TODAY

LGBTQ domestic and intimate partner violence reports rise by 15% since 2008; Murder rate up 50% since 2007; Economic crisis and anti-LGBTQ discrimination present barriers for survivors

NATIONAL— The National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs (NCAVP) today released the Report on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer Domestic/Intimate Partner Violence in the United States in 2009. The Report found that LGBTQ domestic/intimate partner violence reports rose 15% since 2008 and is a pervasive social problem at a time when LGBTQ-specific programs were losing staff or closing altogether due to the economic crisis. In 2009, NCAVP documented 6 murders related to LGBTQ domestic/intimate partner violence, representing a 50% rise since 2007.

“NCAVP member programs face sharp increases in calls from LGBTQ survivors while sustaining 50% or more in cuts to staffing and programs closures because of the financial crisis,” said Lisa Gilmore of the Center on Halsted Anti-Violence Project, “We know that LGBTQ survivors need specific and culturally competent services to stay safe and our primary recommendation in this Report is that funding for LGBTQ-specific anti-violence programs is needed now more than ever.”

LGBTQ survivors reported that from 2008 to 2009, there was a 99% increase in calls for police assistance, with a 135% increase in arrests being made; however during this same time, reports of misarrest were up 144% and reports of police misconduct rose 74%. “NCAVP knows that the police are 10 to 15 times as likely to make a dual arrest in cases of same-sex domestic/intimate partner violence than in heterosexual ones,” said Kelly Clark at the Gay Alliance of the Genesee Valley’s Community Safety Program, “This Report demonstrates the critical need for LGBTQ-specific cultural competence for first responders, such as law enforcement, to prevent re-traumatizing the survivor of violence.”

NCAVP also found significant barriers related to anti-LGBTQ bias and discrimination to service provision and shelter options for LGBTQ survivors. In this Report, NCAVP calls on local, state and federal governments and private funders to increase funding for community-based LGBTQ-focused domestic/intimate partner violence direct services and prevention. “Policy makers, community organizations and the general public must work to eradicate the anti-LGBTQ bias and discrimination in our laws, culture and society that are barriers to LGBTQ survivors seeking access to vital services and supports,” Terra Slavin of the LA Gay & Lesbian Center’s Domestic Violence Legal Advocacy Project. “Legislators must take immediate action to overturn discriminatory legislation, to implement laws that prohibit these practices and to support the civil rights of LGBTQ communities including survivors of domestic/intimate partner violence.”

The findings and recommendations made in this Report, and the compelling real-life survivor stories that are highlighted in the accompanying Survival, Support and Resilience: Stories of LGBTQ Survivors and Victims of Domestic/Intimate Partner Violence,highlight the distinct experiences and challenges encountered by LGBTQ survivors of domestic/intimate partner violence. Policymakers and the public have the responsibility to support NCAVP member organizations in our work to foster survivor self-determination and safety, to eradicate LGBTQ domestic/intimate partner violence, and to end institutional discrimination against LGBTQ communities.

A complete version of the report and the accompanying survivor stories, as well as a pre-recorded audio release from NCAVP members, can be found at: http://www.avp.org/ncavp.htm.

 

 Hello Good People!

 
This edition of my newsletter has so much content that I will keep my deep thoughts relatively short. I do want to share, however, that I have been so energized by vulnerability in the last few weeks. Either I forgot that vulnerability could be so inspiring, or I never thought of it in this way. Beginning my fellowship, and experiencing the gratitude and discomfort of finding myself in exactly the right place at exactly the right time to have my creativity and my politics challenged in exactly the right ways, has given me a completely new appreciation for being vulnerable and opening my mind and my heart and my body to what is. 
 
This weekend I also had the opportunity to attend a conference in St. Paul, Minnesota on Overcoming Racism. It was an intense weekend on a number of levels, and I came away with an incredible resource for teaching African American history, which I share below. But for me, by far and away the most important take away was recognizing my own ignorance. In the last year I have developed a workshop on Resisting Racism and I have been very lucky to have some incredible teachers and resources in this process. But this weekend an awareness dawned on me: that I have been taught, and I have taught others, to think about race and racism as primarily a white people/black people issue. Now, obviously I know that race and racism goes well beyond white folks and black folks. But in the same way that we tend to oversimplify just about everything, we oversimplify the problem of racism as being between binaries when we can easily identify ourselves in one or both of them. 
 
The conference I attended, however, focused strongly on the horrendous genocide of Native Americans, and the continued struggle of Native Americans and American Indians to regain and/or retain their land. Throughout both days of the conference, I found myself continually shocked and ashamed by how little I knew of these completely current issues, and I felt very keenly my responsibility as an anti-racist facilitator to build my knowledge. As I returned home and felt the wholeness of my life out in the woods, I began to understand how pivotal land and belonging are, both to that wholeness and to this struggle we are all in - the struggle to not only survive these awful times, but to do so in communion with one another.
 
And so, ever in the spirit of building knowledge, I offer these incredible items that have come to me through the many networks I participate in - a new resource for teaching and learning about black people, a challenging documentary about death row, classes on herbs, a conference on activist scholarship, a queer poetry revival, and a report on violence in and against the LGBTQ community. I hope that there is something useful for you here. And as always, if there is something you find that you think I should share, send it to me!
 
Today is election day. It is also All Souls Day, the Day of the Dead. In Irish tradition, this time of year is the thin time, the time when the ancestors come near. Today I will take some time in silence to reflect on the fact that this country was built on the backs and from the blood of children, mothers, grandmothers, fathers, and grandfathers who were massacred and enslaved by occupiers that could not see the value of their living, and could not truly see the value of the land. 
 
In this edition of Iambrown:
  • The African American Registry
  • Support The Road to Livingston, A Documentary about Death Row
  • Herb Class Series at The Commons, Brooklyn w/ Lauren Giambrone of Good Fight Herb Co.
  • Abriendo Brecha VIII: Eighth Annual Activist Scholarship Conference
  • Black Queer Poets Embark on Regional 'Salon-Inspired Tour'
  • National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs MEDIA RELEASE
 


----
The African American Registry
 
The African American Registry, found at www.aaregistry.org, is a non-profit education organization and web resource that includes hundreds of hours of filmed oral histories with elders, professionals, youth, and others, captured in the service of giving voice to the black experience and assisting educators in incorporating black history into all parts of their curriculum. Right now, black history is primarily taught in February, and primarily taught about the civil rights movement and the figureheads we feel comfortable with. This resource shifts the paradigm, and the Registry offers low-cost training to K-12 teachers who wish to learn more about its use. Check it out and pass it on!
 
----
Support The Road to Livingston, A Documentary about Death Row
 
My dear friend Sally Bergom is working on a documentary about the death row in Texas. The Road to Livingston follows several people affected by death row, and deals with what happens to people when a loved one is sentenced to death. Sally and her team are trying to raise money to complete the film. Please visit this website,  http://www.indiegogo.com/The-Road-to-Livingston?i=pite, to donate any amount, and watch the incredibly moving trailer. Please also feel free to send the trailer to others and offer feedback, particularly if you have experience in the prison system.

----
Herb Class Series at The Commons, Brooklyn w/ Lauren Giambrone of Good Fight Herb Co.

The Commons Brooklyn (www.thecommonsbrooklyn.org) is hosting a 3 part herbal series in November led by farmer & food justice activist, Ben Schwartz, and herbalist & community health educator and organizer, Lauren Giambrone. Participants can take individual classes or sign up for the entire series. 

Urban Herb Walk
saturday, nov. 6th / 12-2pm / $15-25 suggested, $60 for all 3 classes

Realize the wealth of the medicinal plants of Prospect Park with two guides who have more than a decade of experience! This plant walk will focus on learning how to identify medicinals growing within an urban setting, while discussing how these plants contribute to our health and well-being. Bring a notebook and wear appropriate clothing for being outdoors for 2 hours. Meet at Grand Army Plaza entrance to Prospect Park.

Home Sick : herbal & at home remedies for the cold and flu season
wednesday, nov. 10th / 7-8:30pm / $15-25 suggested, $60 for all 3 classes

This class will explore remedies to support the immune system during the cold & flu season, as well as to combat and relieve symptoms when we fall ill. With a hands-on approach and a focus on popular education, participants will share their strategies for staying well and leave with tools (and herbal medicinal recipes!) to keep them healthy and thriving during the winter months. 

Herb Justice : supplying tonic herbs for those without health insurance
wednesday, nov. 17th / 7-8:30pm / $15-25 suggested, $60 for all 3 classes

 

This class will profile several gentle herbs that are great tonics for folks suffering from diabetes, high blood pressure, toothaches, insomnia and lung conditions.  Among the herbs we will profile are Mullien, Burdock, Nettles, Lemon Balm and Spilanthes.

about the teachers

Ben Schwartz is a grower and food justice activist specializing in medicinal herbs and teas. He founded and currently co-runs Wassaic Community Farm now in its third year, located in Wassaic, NY. He works with farmers’ market customers and CSA members both locally and in the South Bronx to supply their herbal needs and address issues of food justice. He first started working with wild herbs as a teenager under John Young, the first student of Tom Brown at the Wilderness Awareness school. Ben led his first wild and medicinal plant walk at 18 and has learned from many herbalists—from the late Frank Cooke “Green Man” to Robert Eidis of the North Carolina Goldenseal and Ginseng Farm. Ben has grown and harvested herbs from the South Bronx to Honduras, as well as the Harlem Valley, NY. wassaiccommunityfarm.wordpress.com.



Lauren Giambrone is an herbalist practicing western herbal medicine with a harm reductionist approach. In 2008, she apprenticed at the Northeast School of Botanical Medicine and interned at the Ithaca Free Clinic, an integrative community health clinic offering free health-care services to all. Lauren has assisted an acupuncturist & herbalist in clinical practice, provided harm reduction, nutrition and wellness services to homeless youth in lower Manhattan, and assisted the medicinal herbs growing effort at Wassaic Community Farm. For the past four years, she has also been organizing with the Rock Dove Collective, a community health-exchange network that works to transform how health care is accessed. Lauren recently moved to a farm in the Hudson Valley where she continues to wildcraft and grow medicinal herbs, offer consultations and workshops, and co-host a radio show discussing health and the politics of healing. She recently started a small herbal medicine company, Good Fight Herb Co., which can be found at stores and farmers’ markets in Brooklyn, Bronx, Queens, Millerton and Hudson, NY, and online at www.goodfightherbco.com. Lauren believes strongly in the importance of self-care and the role that herbal medicine plays in creating access to health services and education.

 

----
Abriendo Brecha VIII: Eighth Annual Activist Scholarship Conference


Sponsored by the University of Texas at Austin Division of Diversity and Community Engagement Community Engagement Center
February 17-19, 2011
The Texas Union
 
Abriendo Brecha is an annual conference at the University of Texas at Austin dedicated to activist scholarship; i.e. research and creative intellectual work in alignment with communities, organizations, movements, and networks working for social and economic justice. Abriendo Brecha VIII calls for a renewed discussion on the meanings and practices of activist scholarship, particularly as it relates to solidarity between groups and overcoming power inequalities through alliance. Some themes for this year’s conference include: struggles over land, resource distribution, gentrification, prisons, cross-racial alliance, and immigrant rights. 

Abriendo Brecha VIII is a unique opportunity for coalition building across geographic, political, and national spaces, as well as a forum to present engaged academic work in solidarity with communities at the local, national and international level.  Solidarity, as a key theme, will both guide submissions as well as structure the nature of the conference.  Presentations will consist of action-oriented discussions, panels, interactive workshops, performances, and film.  This is an opportunity to meet, exchange experiences, and create local and cross-border connections with others working at the intersections of grassroots organizing and intellectual production. 

We welcome the participation of activists, community members, artists, high school students and those not specifically connected to academia. Abriendo Brecha is free and open to the public. 

Proposal submission deadline: November 15, 2010. 
For proposal instructions and submissions please visit: www.utexas.edu/diversity/abriendobrecha/
Contact AbriendoBrecha2011@gmail.com with any questions. 


----
Black Queer Poets Embark on Regional 'Salon-Inspired Tour'

LOVE the poet, Venus Thrash, and J. Pope take four cities by storm in November with a set of poetry, music, and more. Known as “THE REVIVAL”, the tour begins in Washington, DC, then heads out to Baltimore, Philadelphia and Brooklyn. The spoken word concerts will be hosted in four private residences, resurrecting the salon concept and breaking the envelope of safe space for today's queer artists and allies.

The Revival offers a unique experience with featured poets and musicians. Catered by local chefs in each city, the atmosphere is filled with good words and good music. Guests will walk into a home, be welcomed by ‘ushers’ and enjoy a service hosted by Jade Foster, whose “Black Church Maraca” open mic series served as a launch pad for this effort. "With Black Church, poets all over DC opened their homes up to complete strangers so we could all have that opportunity to share,” says Foster. “The Revival plays on that idea, offering a chance for people to sit down and listen, get up and move."

Offering food, drinks, as well a vending opportunities for local artists, each city’s event will feature a local poet, including New York’s Yvonne Fly, Baltimore’s Queen Earth and Philly’s Ms. Wise.

The Revival Tour Schedule:
November 11, Washington, DC.
November 12, Philadelphia.
November 13, Brooklyn.
November 14, Baltimore.
Each show starts at 7pm.

Complete information is available at cereusrevival.tumblr.com; tickets are on sale at cereusrevival.eventbrite.com.

For more information about The Revival, please contact: Tierra Rich at cereusarts@gmail.com

---
National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs MEDIA RELEASE

October 26, 2010
Media contact: Sue Yacka 212.714.1184 x 26
syacka@avp.org

REPORT ON LESBIAN, GAY, BISEXUAL, TRANSGENDER AND QUEER (LGBTQ) DOMESTIC/INTIMATE PARTNER VIOLENCE IN THE UNITED STATES RELEASED TODAY

LGBTQ domestic and intimate partner violence reports rise by 15% since 2008; Murder rate up 50% since 2007; Economic crisis and anti-LGBTQ discrimination present barriers for survivors

NATIONAL— The National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs (NCAVP) today released the Report on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer Domestic/Intimate Partner Violence in the United States in 2009. The Report found that LGBTQ domestic/intimate partner violence reports rose 15% since 2008 and is a pervasive social problem at a time when LGBTQ-specific programs were losing staff or closing altogether due to the economic crisis. In 2009, NCAVP documented 6 murders related to LGBTQ domestic/intimate partner violence, representing a 50% rise since 2007.

“NCAVP member programs face sharp increases in calls from LGBTQ survivors while sustaining 50% or more in cuts to staffing and programs closures because of the financial crisis,” said Lisa Gilmore of the Center on Halsted Anti-Violence Project, “We know that LGBTQ survivors need specific and culturally competent services to stay safe and our primary recommendation in this Report is that funding for LGBTQ-specific anti-violence programs is needed now more than ever.”

LGBTQ survivors reported that from 2008 to 2009, there was a 99% increase in calls for police assistance, with a 135% increase in arrests being made; however during this same time, reports of misarrest were up 144% and reports of police misconduct rose 74%. “NCAVP knows that the police are 10 to 15 times as likely to make a dual arrest in cases of same-sex domestic/intimate partner violence than in heterosexual ones,” said Kelly Clark at the Gay Alliance of the Genesee Valley’s Community Safety Program, “This Report demonstrates the critical need for LGBTQ-specific cultural competence for first responders, such as law enforcement, to prevent re-traumatizing the survivor of violence.”

NCAVP also found significant barriers related to anti-LGBTQ bias and discrimination to service provision and shelter options for LGBTQ survivors. In this Report, NCAVP calls on local, state and federal governments and private funders to increase funding for community-based LGBTQ-focused domestic/intimate partner violence direct services and prevention. “Policy makers, community organizations and the general public must work to eradicate the anti-LGBTQ bias and discrimination in our laws, culture and society that are barriers to LGBTQ survivors seeking access to vital services and supports,” Terra Slavin of the LA Gay & Lesbian Center’s Domestic Violence Legal Advocacy Project. “Legislators must take immediate action to overturn discriminatory legislation, to implement laws that prohibit these practices and to support the civil rights of LGBTQ communities including survivors of domestic/intimate partner violence.”

The findings and recommendations made in this Report, and the compelling real-life survivor stories that are highlighted in the accompanying Survival, Support and Resilience: Stories of LGBTQ Survivors and Victims of Domestic/Intimate Partner Violence,highlight the distinct experiences and challenges encountered by LGBTQ survivors of domestic/intimate partner violence. Policymakers and the public have the responsibility to support NCAVP member organizations in our work to foster survivor self-determination and safety, to eradicate LGBTQ domestic/intimate partner violence, and to end institutional discrimination against LGBTQ communities.

A complete version of the report and the accompanying survivor stories, as well as a pre-recorded audio release from NCAVP members, can be found at: http://www.avp.org/ncavp.htm.

 

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