This post remains published for posterity.
The In Memoriam Page is the complete listing.
NCAVP mourns the death of Mike Collins, who was found dead in his apartment on August 21st, 2017. According to media reports, he had been killed by D’kota Chance Griffin, with whom he had had a prior romantic relationship. Though much isn’t known about the motive of the attack, police say that it occurred after a physical altercation between the two men. Griffin has been charged with Collins’s murder and taken into custody. Collins was remembered by hundreds in a candlelit vigil held on the 22nd, the day after his body was found.
We mourn the loss of Mike Collins, who is the 10th LGTBQ victim of fatal intimate partner violence NCAVP has counted this year, and send love and care to his friends and loved ones, especially the Odenville Middle School community, which counted him as family. Though not often talked about, intimate partner violence (IPV) affects lesbian, bisexual, and gay people at the same or higher rates than non-LGB people. And yet, LGBTQ people continue to experience discrimination and violence when accessing care and support around relationship violence.
The overlap of hate violence and intimate partner violence is often very large, and that hate violence may be internalized or externalized and enacted in different ways. We must work together to support each other as a community, and help support those who might be in abusive relationships, and we must also work to enrich our narratives and models of what healthy, loving LGBTQ relationships look like: not only in terms of love for community and individuals but in terms of self-love, as well.
In memory of Mike Collins.
If you are in the Birmingham, AL area, NCAVP member organization The Free2Be Safe Anti-Violence Project is available to support you. Get in touch at (205) 202-7476 or find out more at http://free2be.org/free2be-safe.
NCAVP works to prevent, respond to, and end all forms of violence against and within lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer (LGBTQ) and HIV-affected communities. NCAVP is a national coalition of local member programs and affiliate organizations who create systemic and social change. NCAVP is a program of the New York City Anti-Violence Project.