The LGBT Rally for Homeless Youth will be the launch of the National Campaign for Youth Shelter, a movement to prioritize the protection of homeless youth across the United States. The Ali Forney Center, the nation's largest organization dedicated to homeless LGBT youth, is partnering with the National Coalition for the Homeless. The new campaign aims to demand a national response to the crisis of youth homelessness in the U.S.
Despite a staggering 500,000 unaccompanied children and teens experiencing homelessness each year, there are only around 4,000 beds for youths in shelters. And although around 5 percent of the overall youth population in the U.S. identify as LGBT, upwards of 40% of those youths who are homeless are LGBT.
The LGBT Rally for Homeless Youth, taking place in New York City's Washington Square Park at 6 PM on June 2nd, will feature some exciting speakers:
- David Mixner, LGBT leader and civil rights activist
- Edie Windsor, plaintiff in United States v. Windsor, which found DOMA unconstitutional
- Mark Harrigton, co-founder/executive director of the Treatment Action Group (TAG), one of the heroes of How To Stop A Plague
- Martin Boyce, veteran of the Stonewall Uprising
- Danny Garvin, veteran of Stonewall Uprising and former homeless LGBT youth
- Wade Davis, executive director of the You Can Play Project
- Jennifer Louise Lopez, Transgender activist and founder/executive director of Everything Transgender in NYC and formerly homeless
- Emanuel Xavier, author and former homeless LGBT youth
- Chris Bilal, youth leader in the fight against Stop and Frisk policies and former homeless LGBT youth
- Cathy Marino-Thomas, former co-president and board chair of Marriage Equality New York
- Carl Siciliano founder/executive director of the Ali Forney Center
The Master of Ceremonies for the rally will be ballroom legend, star of Paris Is Burning, and former homeless LGBT Youth Junior Labeija.
Come out to the rally on Monday to show your support, or visit the campaign's website to find out other ways you can get involved. Demand support and shelter for our nation's youth!