LGBTQ centers go virtual to support community

With countrywide shutdowns of schools and programs, centers are forced to find new ways to get and provide support especially to the LGBTQ community.

News 12 Staff

Apr 20, 2020, 4:36 PM

Updated 1,494 days ago

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With countrywide shutdowns of schools and programs, centers are forced to find new ways to get and provide support especially to the LGBTQ community.
Trinity Place, a shelter that houses LGBTQ homeless youth, only has space for 10 residents at a time.
“I’ve gotten so many emails from young people who are saying that they just got kicked out of their homes. A lot of people’s homes are not safe for them,” says director Wendy Kaplan.
With only 10 beds, Kaplan says she has had to make very tough decisions.
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“We suspended all intake, which I know a lot of shelters are doing because we need to protect those who are here,” says Kaplan.
As an outlet for support, many shelters and LGBTQ centers have gone virtual.
“The physical distance that is required of everyone comes along with isolation and that’s a big challenge, especially those in our community who struggle with substance abuse or other issues,” says Kaplan.
The center in Manhattan has seen an increase of people calling in for counseling services since the pandemic hit. Destination Tomorrow in the Bronx is also providing free group sessions.
Advocates say they are hoping city officials will get into gear and help provide clean spaces for young people who are finding themselves without a home.
“There’s so many new spaces in New York City, hotel rooms etc. and our city needs to open them up and make them available these individuals,” says Kaplan.
Even though there’s no data showing how COVID-19 is affecting the LGBTQ community centers are urging people to keep reaching out.


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