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LGBTQ Intimate Partner Violence In 2016

For twenty years, the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs (NCAVP) has released reports on the pervasive and sometimes deadly intimate partner violence perpetrated against and within LGBTQ and HIV affected communities, in an effort to better identify our communities’ needs.

Year after year, these reports demonstrate that IPV affects the LGBTQ community in unique and far-reaching ways. Though many advancements have been made in the last twenty years, all too often LGBTQ people are still left out of conversations about intimate partner violence. This is especially true for LGBTQ people of color, LGBTQ people who are undocumented, and LGBTQ people with disabilities, whose stories are rarely heard.

It’s vital that resources dedicated to intimate partner violence focus on building community based support for LGBTQ survivors. We call for domestic violence and intimate partner violence services to continue making their resources affirming to the LGBTQ community and to support LGBTQ organizations and communities in addressing intimate partner violence whenever possible. And we call upon policymakers to not only support affirming resources for LGBTQ survivors, but to increase protections overall for LGBTQ communities.

“NCAVP’s report shows a greater need than ever to understand the unique ways LGBTQ and HIV-affected communities experience IPV, and to reach our communities with vital information, resources, and services. Yet LGBTQ people’s legal rights and protections are being eroded daily by the Trump administration, only making LGBTQ communities more vulnerable to violence.”

~Beverly Tillery, Executive Director, New York City Anti-Violence Project

  • IPV can be deadly for LGBTQ people. NCAVP documented 15 IPV homicides in the U.S. in 2016. People of color made up 60% of the 15 reports of LGBTQ and HIV-affected IPV homicides. Nine of the victims were cisgender men, three  were cisgender women, two of the homicides were of transgender women, and one identified as gender non-binary.

  • LGBTQ people experience intimate partner violence at the intersections of our identities. LGBTQ people who hold multiple marginalized identities including people of color, people with disabilities, undocumented people, and people living with HIV experience IPV in specific ways, face unique challenges and barriers to resources.

  • Community based resources are crucial to addressing IPV in LGBTQ communities – not increased resources into criminal responses. NCAVP’s newest report found that the most common services sought by LGBTQ survivors of IPV were legal, housing and mental health advocacy as well as safety planning and emergency funds.

In the Toolkit for this report, we intend for LGBTQ people to know that they have a right to services that are culturally specific and safe for them. We hope that this information can be used to spark conversations on healthy and unhealthy relationship dynamics and how LGBTQ communities can help each other negotiate safety.