Each year, June serves as Pride month in honor of the 1969 Stonewall riots which were a turning point in the fight for LGBTQ rights in America. Since then, June represents a time to recognize the impact LGBTQ individuals have had on the world. Prevail recognizes Pride month because crime and abuse have no bounds and impact all people regardless of age, race, ethnicity, religion, income, geographic location, education, gender identity, or sexual orientation. As an advocate, my job is to provide support to anyone who has experienced crime or abuse. My goal is to understand each individual’s life journey, help to identify needs and goals, to provide education about relevant topics, and support and affirm each person who enters my office. This is empowerment and is a core philosophy of victim advocacy.
Most importantly, I recognize that the LGBTQ community is impacted by crime and abuse at a disproportionate rate than that of individuals who do not identify as LGBTQ. For instance, nearly 44% of lesbian women and over 61% of bisexual women have experienced physical or sexual assault and/or stalking by an intimate partner. This is compared to 35% of heterosexual women reporting the same types of violence. 37% of bisexual men report experiencing these crimes, comparted to 29% of heterosexual men. There are also types of crime that are only experienced within the LGBTQ community, including outing; exposing to others that an individual is LGBTQ.
At Prevail, we provide compassionate support to all children, adolescents, and adults who have experienced crime or abuse. We know that crime knows no limits so our services don’t either. We welcome all.