Wearing purple in support of LGBTQ youth

6 teen suicides have catalyzed a movement in support of queer youth

6 teen suicides have catalyzed a movement in support of queer youthWondering what all the royal and lavendar tones are on your Facebook today? It’s in support of LGBTQ youth in the wake of recent suicides.

It’s been decided. On October 20th, 2010, we will wear purple in honor of the 6 gay boys who committed suicide in recent weeks/months due to homophobic abuse in their homes and at their schools. Purple represents Spirit on the LGBTQ flag and that’s exactly what we’d like all of you to have with you: spirit. Please know that times will get better and that you will meet people who will love you and respect you for who you are, no matter your sexuality. Please wear purple on October 20th. Tell your friends, family, co-workers, neighbors and schools. RIP Tyler Clementi, Asher Brown, Seth Walsh, Justin Aaberg, Raymond Chase and Billy Lucas. You are loved.

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Q Center and SMYRC to Host Youth-Focused Forum: “We Are Here”

This past month, the LGBTQ Community has been shaken to its core with news that 5 young people have committed suicide, suicides that were direct results of sustained, unwarranted bullying and harassment because of their sexual orientation. The public outcry has been great–and admirable–and Q Center and SMYRC (Sexual Minority Youth Resource Center) will sustain this momentum, seizing the opportunity to take tangible action in the wake of these horrific, needless tragedies. As has been said, one suicide is a tragedy. Several is a crisis. The LGBTQ Community must work together–and quickly–to stem the tide.

Last spring, Q Center hosted a community forum that came on the heels of a spate of gay bashings in the Portland area. The community spoke, city officials and community activists listened, and Q Patrol emerged, an organization dedicated to not only patrolling our streets, making them safer, but to pooling the resources available to our community.

While Q Center proudly embraces the “It Gets Better” video series led by Dan Savage and we advocate for inspirational and supportive messages to young people by LGBTQ adults (and we applaud those in our community, like Mayor Sam Adams, among many others, who have already recorded their own videos), we fervently believe that as Oregon’s LGBTQ Community Center, we need to take this inspiration a step further. We want to come together as a community and listen to the stories and experiences of LGBTQ youth in our communities.

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