2011 Report on Intimate Partner Violence in Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer and HIV-Affected Communities in the U.S. Released

The National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs (NCAVP), in a national audio press conference today, released its report Intimate Partner Violence in Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, and HIV-Affected (LGBTQH) Communities in the United States in 2011. NCAVP collected data concerning intimate partner violence within LGBTQH relationships from anti-violence programs in 22 states across the country, including Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Texas, Vermont, Washington, a well as from the District of Columbia.

In 2011, NCAVP documented 19 intimate partner violence (IPV) homicides, the highest yearly total ever recorded by the coalition and more than three times the 6 documented homicides in 2010. Of the 19 homicide victims, a majority (63.2%) of IPV homicide victims were men, a significant shift from 2010 when 66.7% of LGBTQH homicide victims identified as women. ãThis yearâs report indicates that men are disproportionately victims of homicide in incidents of intimate partner violence,ä said Gary Heath, Domestic Violence Program Coordinator at the Buckeye Region Anti-Violence Organization (BRAVO) in Ohio. ãNCAVPâs report shows that the societal understanding of IPV survivors needs to expand to include gay men.ä

ãIt is not surprising that these homicides tended to be reported in regions where NCAVP member organizations are located,ä said TreâAndre Valentine, the Director of Organizing and Education at the Network/La Red in Boston, Massachusetts. ãLGBTQH-specific anti-violence programs are more likely to recognize the signs of intimate partner violence, which law enforcement may overlook, and can document these homicides because we spend every day raising awareness about the issue of LGBTQH intimate partner violence.ä

The 2011 report also highlights a number of disturbing trends concerning the severity of violence experienced by LGBTQH people. This yearâs report shows that LGBTQH people under 30 were approaching two times (1.59) as likely to experience physical violence. Within this vulnerable
population, LGBTQH people of color under 30 were nearly 4 times (3.98) as likely to experience physical violence. ãWe need more programs and services focused on LGBTQH youth and youth of color,ä said Sandhya Luther Director of Advocacy at the Colorado Anti-Violence Program (CAVP). ãThese findings underscore the need for policymakers and funders to fund LGBTQH anti-violence organizations to conduct intimate partner violence prevention initiatives, particularly prevention programs for youth and young adults.ä

“This report is ultimately a tool for policymakers, funders, and advocates to use to address LGBTQH intimate partner violence,” said Chai Jindasurat, NCAVP Coordinator at the New York City Anti-Violence Project. “Our recommendations and best practices offer specific solutions for increasing life-saving support for survivors, reaching LGBTQH IPV survivors, and shifting the ways in which we address intimate partner violence in the U.S. to prevent and end this violence.ä

The reportâs specific policy recommendations include calling for the following changes:
Pass an LGBTQ-inclusive Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) that protects survivors from service discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, and recognizes LGBTQ communities as under-served.
Fund LGBTQH intimate partner violence prevention initiatives, particularly for youth and young adults.

Support LGBTQH training and technical assistance programs to increase the cultural competency of all victim service providers.

Increase local, state, and national funding to LGBTQH-specific anti-violence programs, particularly for survivor-led initiatives.
Increase research and documentation of LGBTQH intimate partner violence.

NCAVP works to prevent, respond to, and end all forms of violence against and within lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and HIV-affected (LGBTQH) communities. NCAVP is a national coalition of 41 local member programs and affiliate organizations in 22 states, Canada, and Washington DC, who create systemic and social change. We strive to increase power, safety, and resources through data analysis, policy advocacy, education, and technical assistance.