The National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs (NCAVP) released its annual report this week titled Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer and HIV-Affected Hate Violence in 2015. For this report, which is the most comprehensive of its kind to date, NCAVP collected data on 1,253 incidents of hate violence against LGBTQ and HIV-affected people from 13 local NCAVP member organizations in 11 states, including the Violence Recovery Program at Fenway Health. States contributing to the report included Texas, Colorado, Vermont, Minnesota, Missouri, Massachusetts, Michigan, California, New York, Ohio, and Arizona.
For nearly twenty years, NCAVP has released reports on the pervasive and sometimes deadly hate violence perpetrated against LGBTQ and HIV-affected communities. The NCAVP LGBTQ and HIV- Affected Hate Violence in 2015 report is being released at a time when sweeping anti-LGBTQ legislation is advancing in the United States and existing protections are being rolled back, leaving already vulnerable communities even more susceptible to violence. NCAVP has compiled this report to address the nature and frequency of this violence and who it affects.
This report is being released two days after the deadliest mass shooting in recent U.S. history, one that deeply impacts LGBTQ communities, Latin@ communities, and Muslim communities, and we join the nation in mourning. While it’s important to understand the unique circumstances of what happened in Orlando, we must not treat this as an isolated event.
“There is the unfortunate reality in the world where we work and the people that we serve that hatred and discrimination and violence against them because of their sexual orientation and/or gender identity are an every-day experience,” said Cara Presley, LICSW, Manager of the Violence Recovery Program at Fenway Health, a contributor to the report.
Some key findings of the report were:
- In 2015 there were 24 reported hate violence homicides, a 20% increase from 2014.
- Transgender and gender-nonconforming people of color made up the majority of homicides.
- People of color and undocumented survivors were more likely to experience physically violent forms of hate violence.
- Despite common perceptions, hate violence doesn’t always come from strangers: 62% of survivors knew the person who committed the hate violence against them.
- Of survivors who reported hate violence to police, 80% said police were indifferent or hostile.
If you or someone you know are experiencing distress at this time, you are encouraged to seek support. Reach out to friends, colleagues, supervisors, therapists or a hotline to talk about the ways that you have been affected. Encourage others to do the same. The Violence Recovery Program may be a resource to you or someone you know who has experienced anti-LGBTQ violence. Call the Violence Recovery Program Intake Line for more information at 617.927.6250. For 24-hour support, call the New York City Anti-Violence Program’s hotline (in English and Spanish), at 212.714.1141.
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