Jewish group offers outreach, support
Over the past few months a group called JQ Baltimore has made significant progress in knocking down some barriers that had existed between those of the Jewish faith and the LGBTQ community. Orthodox Judaism has historically struggled with acceptance and inclusion of LGBT Jews. But inroads are gradually being made, and JQ Baltimore, which was founded last June, has clearly been a factor. There is a concern that teens acknowledging their sexuality or gender identity would relinquish their identification with Judaism. Neely Snyder, 34, who has worked with teenagers for the past 15 years and currently serves as director of teen engagement at the Macks Center for Jewish Education, has seen many teens abandon their Jewish identities while struggling with their sexuality. She has been involved with JQ Baltimore since its inception.