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Report: highest rate ever of LGBTQ intimate partner violence, homicide
From a NCAVP news release, through GLAAD
2012-10-10

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NATIONAL - The National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs (NCAVP), in a national audio press conference today, released its report Intimate Partner Violence in Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, and HIV-Affected (LGBTQH) Communities in the United States in 2011. NCAVP collected data concerning intimate partner violence within LGBTQH relationships from anti-violence programs in 22 states across the country, including Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Texas, Vermont, Washington, a well as from the District of Columbia.

In 2011, NCAVP documented 19 intimate partner violence (IPV) homicides, the highest yearly total ever recorded by the coalition and more than three times the 6 documented homicides in 2010. Of the 19 homicide victims, a majority (63.2%) of IPV homicide victims were men, a significant shift from 2010 when 66.7% of LGBTQH homicide victims identified as women. "This year's report indicates that men are disproportionately victims of homicide in incidents of intimate partner violence," said Gary Heath, Domestic Violence Program Coordinator at the Buckeye Region Anti-Violence Organization (BRAVO) in Ohio. "NCAVP's report shows that the societal understanding of IPV survivors needs to expand to include gay men."

"It is not surprising that these homicides tended to be reported in regions where NCAVP member organizations are located," said Tre'Andre Valentine, the Director of Organizing and Education at the Network/La Red in Boston, Massachusetts. "LGBTQH-specific anti-violence programs are more likely to recognize the signs of intimate partner violence, which law enforcement may overlook, and can document these homicides because we spend every day raising awareness about the issue of LGBTQH intimate partner violence."

The 2011 report also highlights a number of disturbing trends concerning the severity of violence experienced by LGBTQH people. This year's report shows that LGBTQH people under 30 were approaching two times (1.59) as likely to experience physical violence. Within this vulnerable

population, LGBTQH people of color under 30 were nearly 4 times (3.98) as likely to experience physical violence. "We need more programs and services focused on LGBTQH youth and youth of color," said Sandhya Luther Director of Advocacy at the Colorado Anti-Violence Program (CAVP). "These findings underscore the need for policymakers and funders to fund LGBTQH anti-violence organizations to conduct intimate partner violence prevention initiatives, particularly prevention programs for youth and young adults."

In 2011, NCAVP programs received 3,930 reports of intimate partner violence, a decrease of 22.2% from 2010. This decrease was due to a substantial 42.7% decrease in reports from the Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Center (LAGLC), which lost funding and staff for their IPV programming, reducing the number of LGBTQH intimate partner violence survivors from whom they collected reports. Excluding LAGLC's reports, there was an 18.3% increase in reports of LGBTQH IPV nationwide. "The decrease in overall reports of intimate partner violence this year, due to the IPV funding that we lost here at LAGLC, demonstrates the tremendous impact that funding has in allowing anti-violence programs to reach LGBTQH IPV survivors," said Terra Slavin, DV Lead Staff Attorney at the L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center. "We need legislation such as the reauthorization of an LGBTQ-inclusive Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) that will help ensure that all people experiencing intimate partner violence including LGBTQ-identified survivors receive access to life-saving support and services."

The report found that LGBTQH people faced other barriers to services as well. More survivors in 2011 (61.6%) reported being denied access to shelter than in 2010 (44.6 %). This continues a two-year trend of increases in shelter access denials. "Lack of access to shelters and other supportive services increases a survivor's risk of immediate danger and puts their lives at risk," said Lisa Gilmore, Director of Education and Victim Advocacy at Center on Halsted in Chicago, Illinois. "We are calling on policymakers to institute LGBTQH-specific non-discrimination provisions to increase support and safety for all survivors and to put an end to discriminatory laws and policies that currently increase barriers and decrease safety for LGBTQH survivors when seeking support."

"This report is ultimately a tool for policymakers, funders, and advocates to use to address LGBTQH intimate partner violence," said Chai Jindasurat, NCAVP Coordinator at the New York City Anti-Violence Project. "Our recommendations and best practices offer specific solutions for increasing life-saving support for survivors, reaching LGBTQH IPV survivors, and shifting the ways in which we address intimate partner violence in the U.S. to prevent and end this violence."

The report's specific policy recommendations include calling for the following changes:

Pass an LGBTQ-inclusive Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) that protects survivors from service discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, and recognizes LGBTQ communities as under-served.

Fund LGBTQH intimate partner violence prevention initiatives, particularly for youth and young adults.

Support LGBTQH training and technical assistance programs to increase the cultural competency of all victim service providers.

Increase local, state, and national funding to LGBTQH-specific anti-violence programs, particularly for survivor-led initiatives.

Increase research and documentation of LGBTQH intimate partner violence.

NCAVP works to prevent, respond to, and end all forms of violence against and within lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and HIV-affected (LGBTQH) communities. NCAVP is a national coalition of 41 local member programs and affiliate organizations in 22 states, Canada, and Washington DC, who create systemic and social change. We strive to increase power, safety, and resources through data analysis, policy advocacy, education, and technical assistance.

NCAVP is coordinated by the New York City Anti-Violence Project

Contributors and Regional Media Contacts

BRAVO, Buckeye Region Anti-Violence Organization (Columbus, OH)

Contact: Gary Heath, (614) 294-7867

gary@bravo-ohio.org

Colorado Anti-Violence Program (Denver, CO)

Contact: Sandhya Luther, (303) 444-0782 (cell), 303-839-5204 (office)

sandhya@coavp.org

Center on Halsted Anti-Violence Project (Chicago, IL)

Contact: Lisa Gilmore, (773) 661-0734

lgilmore@centeronhalsted.org

Community United Against Violence (San Francisco, CA)

Contact: Maria Carolina Morales, (415) 777-5500

carolina@cuav.org

Equality Michigan (Detroit, MI)

Contact: Gregory Varnum, (313) 537-7000 x105

greg@equalitymi.org

Fenway Community Health Violence Recovery Program (Boston, MA)

Contact: Jessica Newman, (617) 927-6071

jnewman@fenwayhealth.org

Gay Alliance of the Genesee Valley (Rochester, NY)

Contact: Kelly Clark, (585) 244-8640 x19

kellyc@gayalliance.org

Kansas City Anti-Violence Project (Kansas City, MO)

Contact: Justin Shaw, (816) 561-0550

justin@kcavp.org

L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center (LAGLC) Anti-Violence Project (Los Angeles, CA)

Contact Susan Holt (323) 993-7645

sholt@lagaycenter.org

Montrose Counseling Center (Houston, TX)

Contact: Sally Huffer, (713) 529-0037 x324

mcc2@montrosecounselingcenter.org

New York City Anti-Violence Project (New York, NY)

Contact: Sharon Stapel, (212) 714-1184

sstapel@avp.org

OutFront Minnesota (Minneapolis, MN)

Contact: Rebecca Waggoner, (612) 822-0127 x7656

Rwaggoner@OutFront.org

SafeSpace at the R U 1 2? Community Center (Winooski, VT)

Contact: Kim Fountain (802) 860-7812

kim@ru12.org

Sean's Last Wish (Greenville, SC)

Contact: Elke Kennedy (864) 884-5003

elke@seanslastwish.org

The Network/La Red (Boston, MA)

Contact: Tre'Andre Valentine, (617) 695-0877

organizer@tnlr.org

Victim Response, Inc./The Lodge (Miami, FL)

Contact: Gheisha-Ly Rosario-Diaz, (305) 693-1170 x237

gheishar@thelodgemiami.org

United4Safety (Atlanta, GA)

Contact: Steven Igarashi, (404) 870-7763

steven.igarashi@aidatlanta.org

Wingspan Anti-Violence Programs (Tucson, AZ)

Contact: Casey Chimneystar Condit, (520) 624-1779 x127

ccondit@wingspan.org

About GLAAD: The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) amplifies the voice of the LGBT community by empowering real people to share their stories, holding the media accountable for the words and images they present, and helping grassroots organizations communicate effectively. By ensuring that the stories of LGBT people are heard through the media, GLAAD promotes understanding, increases acceptance, and advances equality. For more information, please visit www.glaad.org or connect with GLAAD on Facebook and Twitter.

As part of GLAAD's mission to raise visibility for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people and issues in the media, the it occasionally disseminates press releases for organizations that support equality for LGBT people.


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