Ericka Dixon, National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs firstname.lastname@example.org
Audacia Ray, New York City Anti-Violence Project email@example.com
As anti-violence organizations that provide direct services for and advocacy with LGBTQ and HIV-affected survivors of hate, intimate partner, and sexual violence, we affirm that #BlackLivesMatter and demand that city, county, and state governments commit to reallocating funding from police departments to human services agencies, including LGBTQ and survivor-centered services. In this moment of deep unrest and uncertainty, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues and in the wake of the police killings of Breonna Taylor in Louisville, Kentucky; George Floyd in Minneapolis, Minnesota; and Tony McDade in Tallahassee, Florida, we demand that police funding be reallocated to organizations that prioritize Black lives and support survivors.
As anti-violence organizations, we work to support LGBTQ and HIV-affected individuals in reducing harm, and healing from the trauma those harms cause, as survivors of violence. For Black, indigenous, and people of color survivors, surviving homophobic, biphobic, or transphobic violence from a partner, acquaintance, family member, landlord, roommate, employer, coworker, or other individual is often paired with and compounded by racist and anti-Black violence they experience from the state. LGBTQ Black, Indigenous and people of color (BIPOC) survivors are not safe when our city, county, and state budgets prioritize the expansion of policing and continue to starve social services. Survivors are often criminalized for acts of survival, and instead of getting the care necessary to survive and thrive, their trauma is increased by harassment and violence they experience at the hands of the police. In order to work toward solutions that truly end violence, we must stand up against policing as a solution, and push for the reallocation of police funding to support community-based, trauma-informed organizations that support survivors, especially organizations that are led by BIPOC community leaders.
Our organizations operate with a survivor-centered framework, and this means supporting survivors in exploring all their options for healing and justice. For many survivors, this looks like receiving counseling support from our organizations, peer support from other survivors, and developing political education to connect their individual experiences with their communities and building power with other survivors. Some survivors want to work with the government or state agencies to get an order of protection or even to bring charges against a person who has done them harm. We support these survivors in doing what they need to do to feel safe.
We also believe that long-term, our communities are not safer when government budgets prioritize policing over human services that include health care, housing, education, and services for survivors of violence. During a pandemic in which LGBTQ people of color are vulnerable to illness, job loss, and housing instability, and in which Black people are dying at disproportionately higher rates, it is unconscionable for governments to fund police departments at the same or higher levels, while cutting social services. It’s time for budgets to prioritize people and social services over policing.
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- Advocacy Center of Tompkins County
- Barrier Free Living Inc.
- Black and Latino LGBTQ Coalition
- Brooklyn Community Pride Center
- California Partnership to End Domestic Violence
- Catholic Charities
- Center for Safety & Change
- Center for Survivor Agency & Justice
- Chosen Family Law Center, Inc.
- City University of New York School of Law
- Day One
- Diverse and Resilient
- Domestic Violence Project
- Equality New York
- Fenway Health — Violence Recovery Program
- GAPIMNY — Empowering Queer & Trans Asian Pacific Islanders
- Gender Equality New York
- Haven Partners Group
- Human Rights at Home Clinic Mass Law
- Illinois Accountability Initiative
- Jane Doe Inc. MA Coalition Against Sexual and Domestic Violence
- Legal Aid Society
- Los Angeles LGBT Center
- North Brooklyn Coalition Against Family Violence
- NW Network of Bisexual, Trans, Lesbian, and Gay Survivors of Abuse
- NYC Anti-Violence Project
- OutFront Minnesota
- Pacific Coast Counseling
- Positive Sum Consulting
- Pride Center of Vermont
- Rachel Weiss
- Rainbow Community Cares
- Safe Horizon
- Sakhi for South Asian Women
- St. Loui Anti-Violence Project
- Legal Aid Society
- The Legal Project
- The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center
- LGBTQ Center Long Beach
- The Montrose Center
- Trans Pride Initiative
- Violence Recovery Program of Fenway Health
- Willow Domestic Violence Center NY
- WINGS Foundation
- YMCA of Genesee Count