Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Success for Matthew Shepard Act

I have great news to share: the Senate has passed the Matthew Shepard Act!
The bill will soon be on its way to President Obama's desk, where he'll get a chance to make good on his promise to sign it.
This vote came on the heels of tremendous pressure from radical right-wing groups that used every trick in the book.
They called the bill the "Pedophile Protection Act," among other outrageous claims. They dismissed the barbaric hate crime that took Matthew Shepard's life as a "hoax." They flooded the Senate with hundreds of thousands of letters and calls.
But your calls, emails, and financial support for our work helped make sure the truth prevailed in the end. Without you, this victory for equal rights would not have been possible.
Will you do one last important thing? Both of your senators voted "Yes" on the bill and both need to know we appreciate their courage under fire.
Please call and thank your senators today: Sen. Charles 'Chuck' E. Schumer (202) 224-6542 and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (202) 224-4451 .
Once you've called, please report your call. Don't skip this step! It helps us track all the calls.
A simple 'thank you' after the vote is just as important as all the calls and emails before the vote. It lets lawmakers know that their constituents are engaged, and makes them more likely to pay attention when we need their help again. This is a tremendous step forward for full equality for LGBT Americans, but we most certainly will need their help again.
Please take a minute from your busy day to make these two quick calls.

Bullying LGBTQ students

Please read the article below to learn about the work that the Gay,
Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN) is doing to promote the
Safe Schools Improvement Act, created "to promote school safety and
improve student achievement for all students, through legislation that
will comprehensively address the issues of bullying and harassment".

"Sirdeaner Walker Testifies Before House Subcommittees in Support of
Safe Schools Improvement Act"

While bullying is often seen as separate from sexual harassment,
gender-based and orientation-based harassment come in many different
forms. The Coalition for Gender Equity in Schools aligns itself with
this exciting and necessary work.

Please show your support of the Safe Schools Improvement Act by signing
the online petition at the beginning of the article.

More information about the SSI Act can be found here:

Monday, July 27, 2009

In favor of the Syringe Exchange!

The House voted to defeat the Souder Amendment (and in favor of syringe exchange) 218 - 211.

Thank you all for the astonishing work that you have been doing to get people motivated to call!!!

Great news!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Contact: Sean Barry, 646.373.3344 /


Bill Would Create An Affordable Housing Protection For 11,000 Low-Income People With AIDS At Risk Of Eviction;
Advocates Look to Assembly and Governor Paterson to Approve It

New York – A coalition of low-income people living with HIV/AIDS and housing providers praised the New York Senate for passing a bill designing to prevent homelessness among low-income people living with AIDS. The bill, introduced by Senator Tom Duane and sponsored by thirteen of his colleagues, would ensure low-income people with AIDS receiving public housing assistance pay no more than 30% of their disability income towards their rent. It passed with bipartisan support and despite the absence of four Democratic Senators.

“New York City’s rental assistance program for low-income people with AIDS leaves me with $11 per day, with the rest of my check going to rent each month. That means I have to choose between basic necessities like going to the doctor, buying groceries, keeping my phone turned on or paying rent. This bill would not only give me a fighting chance at a decent quality of life, it would help me survive,” commented Gustavo Pedroza, a campaign leader with the NYC AIDS Housing Network (NYCAHN).

An independent analysis by Shubert-Botein Policy Associates concluded that the bill could save New York money by preventing costly arrears, evictions and emergency housing placements. A growing body of research also documents that stable housing is essential to effective HIV/AIDS healthcare and prevention, including increasing adherence to medication, reducing hospitalizations and ER visits, and reducing HIV risk behaviors.

The bill remained bottled up in the Assembly Ways & Means committee before the end of their regular session, although the Assembly is expected to come back in the fall to pass reconciliation bills and budget modifications. Assembly Member Deborah Glick introduced companion legislation with forty cosponsors, including Ways & Means Committee Chair Denny Farrell. Advocates called on Speaker Silver and Governor Paterson to prioritize enacting the bill into law during any future legislation sessions in 2009.

“The Assembly went home without passing urgently needed legislation that would help me keep my home. We need Speaker Silver to take responsibility and prioritize this vital legislation when they come back to Albany,” said NYCAHN leader James Dean.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

No Ban on Funding: ACT NOW

Walk through key targets, brainstorming:
- what do we need to do in the next 2 days.

- Immediate Targets (likely yes’s and undecideds – need strong reinforcement)
== PHR has people all over
Berry (D-AR01) - Jonesboro (AMSA, C2EA)
Schiff (D-CA29) - Pasadena (APLA)
Lewis (R-CA41) - San Bernadino, Eastern LA (APLA)
Salazar (D-CO03) - Grand Junction, Pueblo (none)
Boyd (D-FL02) (Needs strong constituent support) - Tallahasse (C2EA)
Bishop (D-GA02) - Columbus, Albany, Thomasville (none)
Kirk (R-IL10) - GAA - north of Chicago, Waukegan, Northbrook (IAPAC)
Visclosky (D-IN01) - NW Indiana/Merrillville (C2EA)
Frelinghuysen (R-NJ11) - W of NYC, Dover, Madison (C2EA)
Kaptur (D-OH09) - Toledo, Sandusky (AMSA, MCC)
LaTourette (R-OH14) (listed as “pro,” but should receive strong attention) - eastern Cleveland suburbs (PHR + lots of others)
Murtha (D-PA12) - Johnstown (Px Pt Pgh)
Davis (D-TN04) (Needs strong constituent support) - Columbia, Jamestown, McMinnville, Rockwood (AMSA, PHR)
Mollohan (D-WV01) - Clarksburg, Wheeling (C2EA)

- if you're not from the area, you can say you have "family" there

Ramp up for next week/full House
- what can people elsewhere do?
- call your member of congress and tell them to support syringe exchange funding and vote against any amendments that would limit syringe exchange funding
- what would be useful to make? sample LTE (Kaytee + Farheen). there are also action alerts out there that people can use.
Update on House timeline:
- this friday, there's a full committee hearing on the labor-health and human services bill, where the syringe exchange funding ban is gone! we need to make sure to keep the ban out of the bill, and not let any new amendments that would restrict where funding can go.
- concerns around limiting syringe exchanges to >1,000 feet away from schools and tons of other types of buildings
- need to be sure that people who are supportive don't vote for amendments that would restrict funding or restore the ban
- constituents are really important
- next step after committee vote is a vote on the full floor of the House, Wednesday July 22nd
- Senate will mark up July 28th @ subcommittee, full committee on July 30th, floor before Aug 6th likely
- other possible amendments including
- we don't know what amendments will come, though, but we can expect bad ones. more information on this is attached.

Talking Points

This Friday, members of the Appropriations Committee will likely vote on syringe exchange programs. Opponents of these life-saving programs know that there is universal agreement that they help to prevent the spread of HIV without increasing drug use. They are likely to propose amendments that would attempt to undermine these programs – or eliminate them through a back-door. Below we highlight four amendments that have been offered in the past. We urge members to vote against any amendments. States and localities should decide whether and how to implement these programs, based on local circumstances.

Proximity to schools and other facilities “1000 foot rule”
• Local communities should decide whether to have a syringe exchange and where to place such a program.
• These kinds of restrictions have disparate impact on urban and rural areas. Some cities would no longer be able to run any programs.
• Programs should be placed where they are most needed. Arbitrary restrictions mean that some of the communities hardest hit wouldn’t have access.
• Today, states and localities decide where to place programs. The federal government should not override local authorities.

Safe Injection Facilities
• This bill does not legalize safe injection facilities. This is a red herring, designed to detract from the extensive medical evidence that syringe exchange helps to reduce HIV infection without increasing drug use.
• These facilities exist on a pilot basis in other countries like Canada, where drug users consume pre-obtained drugs with medical supervision. Not a single safe injection facility operates in the US and no city has plans to implement one.

Pledge to oppose the legalization of drugs
• These kinds of “pledge” requirements violate the first amendment because they restrict their right to engage in free speech. The courts have consistently found these free speech restrictions to be unconstitutional.
• This bill does not legalize drugs. The bill does prevent the spread of HIV and hepatitis and to link drug users to health and social services.

Heroin maintenance
• This bill does not legalize heroin or so-called “heroin maintenance” programs. The US currently offers two medications to treat addiction to opiates – methadone and buprenorphine. Syringe exchange programs are the best source of referrals to drug treatment.
• Some countries, including Switzerland, have pilot programs that provide medical grade heroin at government supervised medical clinics to drug users who have proven unresponsive to all other formers of drug treatment.
• Not a single US city has a heroin maintenance program and no city is planning on implementing one. An amendment relating to this issue would be nothing more than a ruse to restore the federal syringe exchange ban.

If you wanna help in any of the areas call Lucky Michaels at 212-629-7440 ext 226 to find out more.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

The Senate is poised to vote on the Matthew Shepard Act THIS WEEK.

The Senate is poised to vote on the Matthew Shepard Act THIS WEEK. But our allies are reporting an avalanche of 300,000 letters and calls from right-wing groups trying to stop it.
Anti-LGBT leaders like Focus on the Family's James Dobson are now calling the bill "utter evil." They're even referring to it as the "Pedophile Protection Act."
With a vote on hate crimes coming any day, we desperately need senators to hear from fair-minded people like you.
It takes about 45 seconds to call each one of your senators – and each one of them needs to hear from you today. It's just as important for supportive senators to hear from us – they've promised to pass this bill, and they need to know we're counting on them to keep fighting.
So set yourself a reminder on your computer. Make the call on your way to lunch. Or stop reading this and do it right now. Whatever you do, make sure to CALL YOUR SENATORS TODAY.
If you've never called Congress, let me assure you, it's incredibly easy.
Before 5 p.m. ET, call Sen. Charles 'Chuck' E. Schumer (202) 224-6542 and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (202) 224-4451 .
Most likely, one of your senator's interns will answer and ask where you're calling from and why. You're calling to urge the Senator to vote for the Matthew Shepard Act (S. 909). Most calls end right there. But if you like, you can add:
Hate crimes against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people are on the rise.
One out of every six hate crimes is because of the victim's sexual orientation.
Hate crimes have more than one victim. They are intended to create an atmosphere of fear and terrorize entire communities.
IMPORTANT: After you hang up, click here to let us know that you made the call. Don't skip this step! It helps us track our progress.
We have the truth on our side – and we need you to speak the truth today to counter our opponents' outrageous lies. Please make your phone calls right now.
Then, please pass this email on to your friends and family.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

With a new HIV infection every 9 ½ minutes in the US, why are we bailing out the bankers and leaving people with HIV without?


AIDS Activists Risk Arrest in Capitol Building
Demanding Promised Funding & Policy Changes
With a new HIV infection every 9 ½ minutes in the US, why are we bailing out the bankers and leaving people with HIV without?

Washington, DC— Dozens of AIDS activists from across the Northeast U.S. risked arrest today, staging a loud demonstration inside the Capitol Rotunda on the eve of key Congressional votes on appropriations for life-saving programs and one day before President Obama’s first trip to Africa since his election.

The activists decried the Obama administration’s failure to make good on a range of AIDS campaign promises including his pledge: to lift the federal ban on funding syringe exchange, to fully fund lifesaving global AIDS programs, and to fully fund AIDS housing programs in this year’s budget. The activists demanded Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and other Congressional leadership fix President Obama’s flawed budget proposal.

“HIV is not in recession,” said Omolola Adele-Oso of DC Fights Back. “So why are we bailing out the bankers with $9 trillion, but breaking promises to fund life-saving AIDS programs in the US and around the world at a fraction of that cost?”

Activists noted that despite campaign pledges to increase bilateral global AIDS (PEPFAR) funding by $1 billion a year and fully fund the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria, the Administration’s budget proposal essentially flat-lines global AIDS funding. Unless President Obama and Congress keep their promise to fund their fair share of the Global Fund’s needed, for example, the Global Fund will have to cut billions of dollars worth of life saving grants.

The activists also denounced the administration’s failure to lift the ban on syringe exchange funding. “Thousands of people have died in the past decade because clean syringes aren’t available,” said Jose De Marco, an HIV+ member of ACT UP Philadelphia and Proyecto Sol Filadelphia. “President Obama, who many of us worked to elect, promised to follow the science and lift the federal funding ban on needle exchange, but his budget explicitly included the ban. Now it’s up to Congress to show real courage where the President has not.”

“We are here because we know that our friends, families, and communities are still dying,” said Larry Bryant of Housing Works. “From DC to California to Zambia people living with AIDS need Congress to act this week and need the administration to make good on its promises.”

Gustavo Pedroza, of the New York City AIDS Housing Network commented: "Housing is one of our most basic needs and a critical part of HIV treatment, care and prevention - without it, other strategies to fight HIV simply don't work. Given the rising cost of housing, President Obama's proposal to flat-fund federal AIDS housing programs will mean low-income people with HIV will lose their housing, not to mention longer waiting lists for a life-saving home."

Tuesday, July 7, 2009


**clean needles work**housing saves lives**fight global aids**

Every 9 1/2 minutes, someone in the US is infected with HIV.
45 more are infected around the world.
This is unacceptable, and we can prevent it.

Last month, President Obama presented his budget to Congress. While there were many areas that showed a real, positive change from the previous administration, there are a handful of areas where the budget did not go far enough. We need to tell Congress to fix it.

The US economy may be in recession, but HIV is not.

CHAMP and our allies are working to improve the federal budget on three levels:
• We want an end to the ban on syringe exchange funding (the ban is in the budget!)
• We want full funding for AIDS housing programs
• We want the US to pay its fair share to fight global AIDS

Congress needs to hear from us NOW. Without a clear outcry from the people they are accountable to - all of us - representatives challenged by a tough political enviornment will not necessarily do the right thing.

Call the leaders of the House and Senate today and tell them HIV is not in recession.

Please call Senate Majority Leader Reid and Speaker Pelosi.
As the leaders of both chambers of Congress, they can have a significant impact on the outcome of the budget, and are accountable to the entire nation.

Speaker Pelosi: 202-225-0100

Majority Leader Reid: 202-224-3542

When you call, say:

"My name is _____________ and I'm calling to request that Speaker Pelosi [Majority Leader Reid] work with the Appropriations Committee to improve President Obama's budget and secure sufficient funding for AIDS programs in the US and around the world. One person is infected with HIV every 9 and a half minutes in the US, and 45 more are infected around the world. It's time to act, and we need Speaker Pelosi's [Majority Leader Reid's] support for an end to the federal ban on funding syringe exchange, $2.7 billion for the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB, and Malaria, at least a $1 billion increase in funding for PEPFAR, and $360 million for AIDS housing programs. HIV is not in recession, and these programs need Speaker Pelosi's [Majority Leader Reid's] support."

President Obama committed to fully funding evidence-based interventions, like AIDS housing and needle exchange. And he committed to increasing funding for the US Global AIDS Plan, known as PEPFAR, by at least $1 billion per year, plus support for multilateral programs like the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB, and Malaria.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Christian Century, July 14, 2009

Religious orgs report 5.5% increase in donations in 08 -v- nationwide decline of 2% in charitable giving overall
Religious orgs received 35% of the total in charitable donations {a little over $100bill of the $307 bill given}
2/3 of public charities reported decreases
54% of human-services charities report increase in need
60% of human-services charities forced to cut expenses

"Organizations serving youth were hit the hardest, with 74% reporting funding shortages."
***majority of contributions came from individuals -v- corporations.
1/2 of all gifts by individuals went to religious orgs.


CHAMP's 'The Politics of HIV Prevention' monthly forum series presents...
Love and Justice in a Time of HIV and AIDS:
The Current State of Affirming Faith Allies
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
6:30 - 8:30 PM

LGBT Community Center
208 West 13th Street (btwn 7th/8th aves.), NYC

Free ~ Open to the public ~ Light Supper & Refreshments provided

For our July forum in "The Politics of HIV Prevention" series, as a part of the series of events produced by the NYC Faith in Action Coalition for AIDS Prevention, Care, and Education (, CHAMP will host a community conversation addressing the current state of faith-based efforts for HIV prevention in New York City.

This forum explores ongoing HIV prevention justice efforts and new directions for interfaith and intra-faith community responses to HIV/AIDS, particularly addressing structural issues driving the domestic epidemic such as homophobia and mass imprisonment. Come join in the conversation with leaders from local faith communities who are working to build affirming outreach and programs to address the root causes of vulnerability amongst their members and in their communities.

Rashidah Abdul-Khabeer - Islamic Social Services Association
Rev. Pat Bumgardner - Metropolitan Community Church of New York
Rev. Stacey Latimer - Unity Fellowship Church Movement
Daniel Leyva - The Latino Religious Leadership Project
Oliver Martin - United Church of Christ HIV/AIDS Network
Waheedah Shabazz-El - U.S. Positive Women's Network
Krishna Stone, Ordained Non-Denominational Minister - GMHC
Aleza Summit - Jews for Racial and Economic Justice, Member

Laura McTighe - Project UNSHACKLE, CHAMP

Thursday, July 2, 2009

The AJWS-AVODAH NY City Team Presents…

Reel Talk: A Film Screening and Conversation on Storytelling and Social Justice

On Sunday, July 12th, join film enthusiasts, story tellers, and fellow Jewish activists, to experience “Youth Producing Change” - a series of short films created by youth from across the globe that premiered at the Human Rights Watch International Film Festival.

Together we will experience the vision of young activists who have channeled art and technology to share their perspectives, engage and empower their communities, and expose human rights issues close to their hearts.

With classic movie treats a plenty, you’re invited to relax, enjoy, and connect with other young Jews from across the city.

Following the screening, local Jewish artists and activists will enhance our movie-going experience by sharing their vantage points as they facilitate dialogue about art and activism. Together we will explore our values and the power of storytelling to promote social change.

When: Sunday, July 12, 2pm-5pm
Where: Congregation Beth Elohim, 274 Garfield Place, Park Slope, Brooklyn
To register: Click here. (or paste the following link:
For more information: Contact

Classic (and kosher!) movie snacks will be served.
Program begins promptly at 2:15pm. Screening begins at 2:30pm, followed by facilitated group conversations.

This program is the first in a two-part series related to art and activism from a Jewish lens. Stay tuned for more information about “Poetry as Protest”, a July 22nd event hosted by Uri L’Tzedek and Mima’amakim and co-sponsored by the AJWS-AVODAH Partnership.

Reel Talk is brought to you by the AJWS-AVODAH NY City Team and is co-sponsored by Brooklyn Jews, Uri L’Tzedek, and Mima’amakim. It is made possible thanks to collaboration with the Human Rights Watch International Film Festival and Founding Presenter, Adobe Youth Voices.


Dear Lucky,
A policy that punishes people for being HIV-positive is close to being repealed.
But we need to make sure it actually happens.
Help eliminate this discriminatory policy once and for all!
It's one of the ugliest remnants of discrimination against people with HIV/AIDS – hurtful, obsolete, and wrong.
A decades-old policy BANS nearly every foreign person with HIV from setting foot on U.S. soil.
But that could change very soon. President Obama's Department of Health and Human Services has finally proposed ending the ban. Starting today, the public has 45 days to weigh in. And the right wing certainly will.
We need to show broad support for ending this discriminatory policy.
We shouldn't punish people for being HIV-positive! Help the Obama administration follow through and end the ban.
This draconian ban tears apart families, denies American businesses access to talented workers, and bars tourists from supporting our economy. It bans students and researchers. It's the reason why the U.S. hasn't hosted a global AIDS conference since 1990.
And it is just downright pointless. Leading doctors have opposed this policy for decades because it has no benefit for public health.
In fact, the U.S. is one of only a handful of countries including Russia, Saudi Arabia and Sudan that maintains such harsh policies. It's time we got with the program.
Congress finally repealed the law a year ago, but only HHS can actually remove HIV/AIDS from the list of diseases with travel restrictions. The Obama administration has proposed the necessary change, but they need our help to get it across the finish line.

Take action now! Help end the ban, once and for all.

Thank you for taking action. This hurtful policy has harmed HIV-positive people for far too long, and with your help, we'll end it.

Joe Solmonese

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Support New LGBT bill in Arkansas

Your help is needed in order to help get the word out about a bill in Congress that would change the lives of many people who’s families are being torn apart.

The Uniting American Families Act (UAFA -H.R. 1024/S. 424) was introduced as a Valentine’s Day gift this year to same-sex, binational couples by Rep. Jerrold Nadler and Sen. Patrick Leahy.

The UAFA would fulfill the pledge of family unification under current U.S. immigration policy by allowing gay and lesbian Americans to sponsor their life partners for immigration to the United States.

As you may be aware, the U.S. government discriminates against gay and lesbian binational couples by not allowing us to sponsor our foreign-born life partners for immigration. Because of this, we face the terrible choice of separating from the person we love
or leaving our country. As Americans, we should not have to choose between family and country.

The Washington Post and The San Francisco Chronicle have both recently endorsed passage of the UAFA, and the American Bar Association has also just recently adopted a resolution endorsing the UAFA.

This is an issue that The White House also supports:

Asked about Obama’s stance on UAFA [the Uniting American Families Act] and the likelihood of its inclusion in comprehensive immigration legislation, White House spokesman Shin Inouye said in a statement that: “The president thinks Americans with partners from other countries should not be faced with a painful choice between staying with their partner or staying in their country. We will work closely with Congress to craft comprehensive immigration reform legislation.”

This is not a problem that is fixed by civil unions or even same-sex marriage arriving in Iowa, Vermont, Maine or any other state. Tens of thousands of bi-national same-sex couples continue to be discriminated against despite changing marriage laws. The Uniting American Families Act would allow us to sponsor our foreign partners for immigration, a right that straight married couples in the US enjoy, along with same-sex couples in 19 other nations around the world. Until this legislation passes, the US will continue, in the gleeful words of the Family Research Council, to “export homosexuals from the United States” as we are forced to choose between our loved ones and our country.

PLEASE contact your members of Congress about this bill, and then reach out to the LGBT Community by mentioning this bill on your website, and send this e-mail to your members, board, family and friends - anyone who is supportive of LGBT rights in Arkansas - to help spread the word about this very important issue. While I am not from Arkansas, in order for this bill to move forward, it needs the support of as many members of Congress as possible, including:

Senator Blanche Lincoln 800-352-9364
Senator Mark Pryor (501) 324-6336
Rep. Marion Berry (870) 972-4600
Rep. Vict Snyder 501-324-5941
Rep. John Boozman(479) 725-0400
Rep. Mike Ross (870) 881-0681

Reaching out to these members of Congress by calling and writing to them to ask for their support can help to ensure this bill will pass! Even if they are Republicans, they need to hear from their constituents about this.

I am one such person who would benefit greatly from the passage of the UAFA. I am an American citizen and my partner is from Europe and we both live and work here in the US, where we bought an apartment together a few years ago. With the recent economic downturn, my partner’s employer has notified him that his work visa will not be renewed when it expires in a few months. If he cannot locate another employer willing to sponsor his work visa (he has been trying for months, but not only is it difficult to find a job at the moment, but especially so when you have to convince the employer to hire an immigration attorney), we will be forced to sell our place, leave our family and friends, and move to Europe. This is something neither of us want to do as we have built a life here together.

If this bill does not move forward on its own, it must be included in Comprehensive Immigration Reform - to include the right of gay and lesbian Americans to sponsor our partners and spouses for immigration.

Sadly, many members of the progressive and pro-LGBT Community are not aware of this issue. Please help me contact Congress to spread the word!!

Update on this issue

We picked up 13 more co-sponsors in the House of Representatives,and 2 more in the Senate. There was a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing about this bill and it got a lot of press (NY Times, CNN and others).


Trevor Project

Trevor Project Needs Help

The Trevor Project, is the only national 24/7 suicide and prevention help line for LGBTQ youth and it needs our help as LGBTQ leaders. Simply stated: it needs contributions. If I may be so bold to know despite all of the current ongoing DOMA battles, despite all of the daily excitement and frustration and debate and celebration, we also must see the collateral damage, the wounds that these great strides can inflict. And in doing so, in acknowledging the young people in this country who feel the hateful burden of these triumphant strides, we prepare the next generation of LGBTQ citizens to achieve and sustain what we all so desperately want, and what we all so genuinely deserve: equality and justice for all.

When a kid from Iowa calls Trevor's helpline because his father just cursed the state government for allowing same-sex marriage, and when the helpline counselor talks and listens and gets him to put down the handful of pills he wanted to take that night. When that one life is saved, we may have just re-written the life story of the first gay president, or of a doctor who will work to ease the difficulties of gender transition, or of a diplomat who will one day represent the United States proudly as the leader in LGBT human rights worldwide, or of a teacher who will stop the bullying in his classroom and pass on the hope Trevor gave him.

When we answer the phone for a girl who is the only openly bi-sexual student in her high school, and the only member of the gay-straight alliance she founded despite her principal’s resistance, and her parent’s protest, and we acknowledge and affirm her bravery, we know we have inspired not just one agent of change, but a generation.

In perceived isolation, many young people grow up today with no reason to think that the horrible things they hear about LGBTQ people aren’t true. The Trevor Project anticipates this. They are poised, and they are growing, and their influence is expanding.

To everyone who calls, we offer comfort at a distance. It’s knowing that in their darkest moment, they have an outlet. They have someone who gets it. But no matter what advice they offer or resources they provide, the most important line they utter to each and every caller is: “you can call us back any time 24/7. We’re always here”

PLEASE ask someone, a client, a friend, a parent, a spouse, yourself to support Trevor today at their website