#MeToo LGBTQ conference in San Diego for victims of sexual violence

Several local LGBTQ-serving organizations will be hosting a conference to increase culturally competent services in San Diego County for victims and survivors of sexual violence who identify as LGBTQ.

The one-day conference entitled #MeTooLGBTQ will be held at The San Diego LGBT Community Center, located at 3909 Centre St., San Diego, CA 92103, on Saturday, April 28, 2018 from 9am to 5pm.

“While the topic of sexual assault has recently been getting more media attention, what still needs to be addressed is the historic lack of LGBTQ compotent services and care for survivors,” said Fernando Lopez, Executive Director of San Diego Pride. “As a survivor myself, it’s been rewarding to work with diverse and dedicated professionals from The San Diego LGBT Community Center, Center for Community Solutions, California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists – San Diego Chapter, North County Lifeline, and 211 San Diego to better meet the needs of survivors in our community. It is this sort of strength in unity that our community needs more of.”

Nationwide, approximately 4 out of 10 gay men (40.2%) and half of bisexual men (47.4%) have experienced sexual violence besides rape at some point in their lives, compared to 1 in 5 heterosexual men (20.8%). A large majority, 61%, of bisexual women and 44% of lesbians have experienced rape, physical violence, or stalking by an intimate partner, compared to 35% of heterosexual women. And 47% of our transgender siblings experience sexual assault in their lifetime.

“Bisexual, queer, transgender, and gender non-conforming people experience higher rates of sexual assault yet seek services less often than straight, cisgender women. Center for Community Solutions recognizes the concerns that so many LGBTQIA+ survivors have about coming forward: “Will I be believed, understood, and respected?” CCS approaches our work with survivors of sexual assault and intimate partner violence with cultural humility. Our hope is that providers in San Diego County will join us in learning about and providing appropriate services to LGBTQIA+ survivors,” said Verna Griffin-Tabor, Chief Executive Officer of Center for Community Solutions.

Registration is now open to victims/survivors of sexual violence, to interested community members, as well as to mental health professionals and service providers who are looking to create change. Five continuing education units are included with paid registration for mental health and clinical providers. Two workshop tracks will allow attendees to participate in interactive trainings, receive valuable resources, and hear from a panel of LGBTQ survivors of sexual violence.

“As an organization providing hundreds of hours of individual, couples, family, and group therapy to members of the LGBTQ community each month, we regularly hear about the challenges people face accessing resources and care after experiencing a sexual assault,” said Director of Behavioral Health Services Heather Marino-Kibbee. “Stigma, shame, and the fear that providers will be neither LGBTQ-competent nor affirming, often deters people from accessing care when they need it most. The Center is excited to join with CCS, Pride, service providers, and community members for a day of learning, coalition building, and dialogue about responding to sexual assault in our LGBTQ community.”

Partnering Organizations include San Diego Pride, The San Diego LGBT Community Center, Center for Community Solutions, California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists – San Diego Chapter, North County Lifeline, and 211 San Diego.

For more information and to register, visit sdpride.org/metoolgbtq

Invite your friends on Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/events/406370113146061

For questions, please contact Kiefer Rich at [email protected]


About San Diego Pride

San Diego Pride raises funds primarily through festival ticket and beverage sales, and through sponsorships, and exhibitor fees. These funds support San Diego Pride’s community philanthropy which has distributed more than $2.5 million in advancement of its mission to foster pride, equality, and respect for all lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender communities locally, nationally, and globally.