Our Plan to Support the LGBTQ+ Community

As your City Council Member, I will fight for policies and initiatives that ensure that the rights of New Yorkers of all sexual identities and genders are protected:
  • Invest in initiatives that protect and uplift LGBTQ+ youth.
  • Commit to an age justice agenda that protects the rights of LGBTQ+ older adults.
  • Press for increased LGBTQ+ health, equity, and protections at the local and state levels.

Read more below...

The Issues:

I am proud to live in a city that has been at the forefront of LGBTQ+ rights, and in a borough that houses one of only two LGBTQ+ senior housing developments in the city. Yet despite gains we’ve made, LGBTQ+ New Yorkers face many of the interrelated issues—barriers to housing, health care, and other critical services—that plague far too many New Yorkers. At the same time, they must battle unique forms of discrimination, especially LGTBQ+ people of color.

 

It’s time for our City to do more to give our youth the bright futures they deserve—and LGBTQ+ youth in particular need increased support for their health and well-being. Mental health challenges and rates of homelessness are consistently significantly higher among LGBTQ+ youth. LGBTQ youth make up 40% of the homeless youth population in New York City. And young New Yorkers who whose sexual orientation and/or gender identity differs from heterosexual or cisgender are more likely to have negative mental health outcomes than their peers. With too many workplaces still not inclusive enough, we also need to lower barriers for LGBTQ+ youth to achieve economic justice, by supporting initiatives like the Summer Youth Employment Program.

While positive steps have been taken to support LGBTQ+ older adults in the Bronx, including a dedicated senior center and affordable senior residence, much more needs to be done for the approximately 1 in 10 older New Yorkers who are LGBTQ+. These residents often have different care needs and concerns than their non-LGBTQ+ peers. For instance, 25% of SAGE care management clients in New York City report having no one to call in case of an emergency. The vast majority, 88%, would be more comfortable with long-term care services if they knew the staff had special training in the needs of LGBTQ+ patients. And while many seniors are housing insecure, it is unacceptable that 1 in 7 older LGBTQ+ New Yorkers have experienced housing discrimination. 

 

Our Solutions:

Every New Yorker deserves to feel safe, respected, and treated with dignity. We can only build back better if LGBTQ+ residents’ lives are free from bias, discrimination, and harassment.

 

As your City Council Member, I will fight for policies and initiatives that ensure that the rights of New Yorkers of all sexual identities and genders are protected:
 
Invest in initiatives that protect and uplift LGBTQ+ youth:
  • In addition to ensuring access to safe, affordable housing for all, I will fight for youth homelessness prevention, and increase youth and family awareness of and availability of city-sponsored resources, including counseling, to support family reunification.

  • Protect the safety and well-being of  LGBTQ+ youth, including advocating for LGBTQ+ inclusive K-12 general and comprehensive sexual health education, where all educators and school staff receive relevant training.

  • Ensure adequate funding for mental health services, and expand access to mental health care, including supporting community-based organizations providing mental health services for youth, prioritizing LGBTQ+ youth.

  • Make sure that every student who wants to participate in the Summer Youth Employment Program (SYEP) has the opportunity to do so by building the capacity of DYCD and worksite providers to accommodate more participants.

  • Call on New York State legislators to pass the The Student Suicide Prevention Act (A4763/S82) and the Mandatory Comprehensive Sex Education in Grades K-12 Bill (S2584/A6616).

Commit to an age justice agenda that protects the rights of LGBTQ+ older adults:
  • Ensure LGBTQ+ older New Yorkers have safe, affordable, supportive housing options.

  • Increase baselined funding for senior services, both for the Department for the Aging (DFTA) and community-based organizations, including those that serve LGBTQ+ seniors.

  • Elevate older LGBTQ+ New Yorkers’ health and well-being, including advocating for passage of the Long Term Care Facility Residents’ Bill of Rights (S85/A866C) that establishes an LGBTQ+ residents’ bill of rights, and protects these seniors from discrimination, by requiring specialized facility staff training.

 

Press for increased LGBTQ+ health, equity, and protections at the local and state levels:
  • Ensure people of all sexual identities and genders have access to safe and affordable healthcare services and information, including advocating to continue and sustain funding for the Trans Equity Initiative, the NYC Council Ending the Epidemic Initiative, increased mental health resources for the LGBTQ+ community, and the NYC Department of Health’s plan to expand PEP & PreP Access. 

  • Call on New York State lawmakers to pass:

    •  The Gender Recognition Act (S56/A3457) that would remove barriers to making legal name changes that further affirm peoples’ identities.

    • The Hate Crimes Analysis and Review Act (S00070/A02230) that would require collection and reporting of data on the sexual orientation, gender identity, racial and ethnic identity regarding the victims and alleged perpetrators of hate crimes.