Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2019-06-05
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

Illinois Collaboration on Youth holds gender-expansive services symposium
by Carrie Maxwell, Windy City Times
2019-05-17

facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


Illinois Collaboration on Youth ( ICOY ) held a day-long gender expansive services symposium May 13 at the Chicago Teachers Union. The day focused on how girls and gender non-conforming youth are impacted by the juvenile-justice system.

One of the breakout sessions under the Pathways into the Juvenile Justice System for Girls and Gender Non-Conforming Youth umbrella was "Homelessness, The Sex Trade and Survival 'Crimes.'"

ICOY Trauma Specialist Eilene Ladson moderated the session, which featured panelists such as Broadway Youth Center Director Latonya Maley, University of Illinois-Chicago Sociology & Gender and Women's Studies Associate Professor Dr. Laurie Schaffner, artist/community advocate Antonio Gray and Youth Empowerment Performance Project ( YEPP ) Community Engagement Coordinator Ka'Riel Gaiter.

Ladson asked the panel about the connection that homelessness, the sex trade and survival crimes have with each other.

Gray spoke about being a transient youth who did not engage in the sex trade, emphasizing that systemic oppression is why some people become homeless and engage in both the sex trade and survival crimes—due to the lack of resources, oppressive policies and lack of knowledge and structure. Gray explained what survival crimes are, including robbery, hopping the turnstiles at CTA stops and other coping mechanisms young people use to survive.

Maley said young people experiencing homelessness turn to the sex trade and survival crimes to meet their basic needs. She said the juvenile-justice system taking them into custody perpetuates the cycle of homelessness and poverty—and that leads them to do more things that cause them to keep going in and out of the system. Maley explained that many young people experience homelessness due to unsupportive parents so they take the risk of living on the streets or couch surfing and dropping out of school.

Gaiter explained that homelessness leads to survival skills that are not translated to the wider world and that makes it harder for those people to navigate the rest of the world. He said these youth's development is interrupted due to them experiencing homelessness and that can affect them for the rest of their lives unless they get the support they need.

Schaffner spoke about the higher number of queer and disabled youth who experience homelessness compared to the wider population. She calls it the juvenile legal system not the juvenile-justice system because it is not set up to help young people. Schaffner explained that she interviewed over 250 youths experiencing homelessness in Chicago and they said they engage in drug dealing, robbing, trespassing, loitering and the sex trade. She said places of business even call the authorities on them for stealing electricity when they would be charging their phones.

Ladson asked about the sex trade being framed as sex trafficking where there are victims when that is not the case for everyone involved.

Gray said that, for a number of LGBTQ youth he knows who are involved in the sex trade it is empowering for them; however, he added if they had access to queer-focused resources in their neighborhoods on the South and West sides, they might not engage in it.

Gaiter explained that he was a part of the sex trade from ages 11-17, adding he did it because he was looking for a place to sleep. He also said that, for some, engaging in the trade is a way to avoid systems that may have an even more negative impact on their lives, like DCFS.

Maley spoke about beauty being a commodity and using one's body to get the resources they need to survive. She also spoke about the danger involved in street-based sex work.

The conversation also focused on policies and systems that perpetuate going into the juvenile-justice system.

Gaiter said positive changes can happen if young people are at the table while Gray explained that identifying as cisgender heterosexual white man for the most part makes one immune to having the same behavior criminalized than any other group of people.

Maley explained that the recently enacted FOSTA/SESTA law that led to a ban on sex trade ads on Craigslist and Backpage did not stop the practice, it just made it go underground.

Schaffner said the United States has a long history of laws regulating sex and none of it has worked.

The day also featured welcome addresses by LGBTQ and chronic illness communities accessibility consultant Chuck Bernsohn who spoke about respectful and kind language choices and ICOY Juvenile Justice Coordinator Bex Leon who talked about framing the conversation.

"I was glad to see the interest in the topic of gender-expansive services from across systems and communities," said Leon. "I hope this conversation will serve as an entry point for many into creating and reimagining a world without the policing and punishment of gender non-conformity—a conversation which must center the voices and perspectives of young people most affected by the juvenile-justice system. ICOY has been excited to be involved in helping to nurture this conversation as it is essential to improving outcomes for children, youth and families in Illinois."

Some of the other breakout sessions included "The School/Prison Nexus," "Domestic Violence, Abuse and Trauma," and "The Revolving Door Between Child Welfare and Juvenile Justice."

See www.icoyouth.org/ .


facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email





Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

Schakowsky, Howard Brown host health talk 2019-06-15 - On June 14, U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky ( D-Illinois ) hosted a press conference following a roundtable discussion with leaders in Chicago's LGBTQ ...


Gay News

Nursing student writes the book on trans healthcare 2019-06-15 - A nursing student who graduated this year from Resurrection University wrote a manual on healthcare delivery for transgender and gender non-conforming persons during ...


Gay News

Pride South Side hosts inaugural Pride Fest 2019-06-15 - Chicago, IL — The Pride South Side Organizing Committee has organized its first inaugural pride festival with activities beginning Friday, June 28 and ...


Gay News

HRC releases sex discrimination report 2019-06-13 - WASHINGTON — Today, the Human Rights Campaign ( HRC ), the nation's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer ( LGBTQ ) civil ...


Gay News

Teens competing at Jimmy Awards 2019-06-13 - Illinois High School Musical Theatre Awards' Marguerite Reed and Jacob Simon will be among 86 students being celebrated at the 11th Annual Jimmy ...


Gay News

About Face Youth Theatre Ensemble celebrates 20th anniversary with 20/20 2019-06-12 - CHICAGO ( June 12, 2019 ) — The About Face Youth Theatre Ensemble is celebrating its 20th anniversary with the world premiere of ...


Gay News

Gov. Pritzker signs Reproductive Health Act into Law, Planned Parenthood responds 2019-06-12 - CHICAGO - Today, June 12, 2019, Governor Pritzker signed into law the Reproductive Health Act ( RHA ), establishing reproductive health care as ...


Gay News

Chicago House names new CEO 2019-06-11 - Chicago House announced that its board of trustees has appointed Michael Herman as its newest CEO. His term will begin July 8. ...


Gay News

Trevor Project survey shows link between suicide, conversion therapy 2019-06-11 - The Trevor Project released a new survey showing that 57 percent of young people who experienced conversion therapy attempted suicide in the last ...


Gay News

Student bullied in Barrington, Commissioner Morrison responds 2019-06-10 - ELK GROVE, Ill. —June 10, 2019—Cook County Commissioner Kevin B. Morrison calls on residents to support one another amidst recent bullying and harassment ...


 



Copyright © 2019 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 



About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.