Contact: Audacia Ray, New York City Anti-Violence Project, aray@avp.org

The New York City Anti-Violence Project (AVP) is proud to be the LGBTQ anchor organization in the new Partners Against The Hate (P.A.T.H. FORWARD) initiative to prevent hate violence against vulnerable communities in New York City. In a year marked by increased hate violence, especially against LGBTQ people of color, the investment in AVP and other community based organizations working to prevent hate violence is a significant step toward creating community safety, instead of criminalization.

The P.A.T.H. Forward funding initiative is an important step in providing communities’ more resources to prevent and respond to violence without relying on policing and prosecution, which many survivors of violence are unable to access. Beverly Tillery, AVP’s Executive Director, shares “This is a crucial time for our LGBTQ and HIV-affected communities. At AVP we have been responding to hate violence for over 40 years. We know that the best way forward is for communities to be resourced to run community-based solutions that support survivors in building safety outside of criminal legal system responses.”

With this funding, AVP will be able to deepen our rapid incident response to support communities and survivors, continue community-based data collection and reporting through our hotline, offer bystander intervention training, and provide additional survivor services and support in the aftermath of violence. The funds will also enable us to resource LGBTQ partner organizations and expand our collaborations with them.

AVP continues to advocate for resources to build safety for our communities, which must be accomplished by shifting funding away from policing, prosecution, and jails and toward community based organizations, housing, health care, education, and food security. In 2019, AVP successfully advocated for the creation of the Hate Crimes Prevention Initiative which allocated $1.1 million of funding for community-based organizations doing hate violence prevention work citywide and across many communities, but was cut completely in 2020 due to the City’s austerity budget cuts.

AVP is the largest LGBTQ-specific anti-violence organization in the country, operates a free and confidential 24/7 bilingual hotline to support survivors of violence, and is one of the founding organizations of the NYC Against Hate Coalition, along with the Arab American Association of NY, which is also an anchor organization receiving funds from this initiative.

AVP appreciates the work of the Mayor’s Office of Hate Crimes Prevention to advocate for and direct funding to innovative, community-based, survivor-centered responses to hate violence.