The fight for the future of the LGBT community in New York City is still going on, but as we approach the end of the first week of September, there is no doubt that there are many more LGBT people in New England than at any time in the past.
This week, the city’s LGBT rights organization, GLAD, hosted a panel discussion in which attendees debated the challenges faced by the LGBTI community and what we can do to make sure that this community stays strong and thriving.
The conversation centered around the challenges facing LGBT people across the globe.
We heard from many LGBT individuals who have been forced to leave their homes due to persecution and violence, and were also touched by the story of a young trans man who is in foster care, having to flee his home to seek safety and security from persecution.
During the panel discussion, several panelists, including activist and New York Pride Organizer Michael T. Williams, spoke about the need to fight discrimination against LGBT people around the world, as well as how the LGBT and gender non-conforming communities have been left out of the fight for justice and equality.
“As we celebrate Pride Month and look forward to celebrating the achievements of the trans community, it’s time to talk about the problems that are happening in our community,” said Williams.
According to GLAD statistics, between 2000 and 2010, more than 1,500 LGBT people were killed in anti-LGBT violence, while the LGBTQ community has suffered from a rise in anti and transphobic violence.
On Monday, GLad and New Yorkers For Equality organized an “Ask a Gay or Lesbian to Explain Pride” event on Tuesday night in which a panelist would ask a transgender person about their struggles.
In the event, attendees were asked what they thought about the pride celebrations and the efforts made to create spaces and programs that support the LGBT communities, especially the LGBT people of color.
One attendee, Sarah Tamblyn, shared that she was inspired to speak up because she was seeing an increase in anti LGBTQ violence in the country.
While Sarah Tammys experiences are not uncommon, she shared her own experiences with the violence she was witnessing and said that she knew she needed to share her story.
As a trans woman, I have experienced so much abuse and discrimination, and I want to give back.
Sarah Timblyn, transgender activist, activist for New York, NY