The Center Announces Grand Re-Opening of the LGBTQ Safety Dorm
LGBTQ+ Community Resource, The Center, Announces Grand Re-Opening of the LGBTQ Safety Dorm
The Center partners with Salvation Army, Bright Star Foundation, and Human Rights Campaign to expand its inclusive housing facility for LGBTQ individuals
LAS VEGAS, February 4, 2020 — In partnership with Bright Star Foundation, The LGBTQ Center of Southern Nevada and The Human Rights Campaign, The Salvation Army will re-open its LGBTQ Safety Dorm at The Salvation Army West Owens Avenue Campus, Building 47, North Las Vegas, NV 89030 on Wednesday, February 5th at 10 am.
The only shelter facility with a primary focus on LGBTQ+ housing needs in Clark County, the newly renovated and expanded LGBTQ Safety Dorm will provide a safe and comfortable space for LGBTQ+ individuals to turn to in times of hardship and transition.
“Housing, in particular, is an area of focus for us given the recent homeless regulation in Clark County,” said John Waldron, Executive Director for The Center. “Considering the high population of LGBTQ individuals that are impacted by such standards, we have a vested interest to do whatever we can to help.”
The 2019 Southern Nevada Homeless Census found that approximately 5,530 people faced housing insecurity in Clark County. Single adults make up a majority of the population at 88 percent, followed by unaccompanied youth, veterans and families and children. LGBTQ adults and youth are also among those at higher risk for housing insecurity, with transgender and gender non-conforming individuals being the most vulnerable. According to the National Center for Transgender Equality, one in five transgender people in the U.S. have been discriminated against when seeking a home, and one in five transgender individuals have faced homelessness at some point in their lives. Experiencing higher rates of victimization from domestic and sexual violence, transgender and gender non-conforming individuals are also many times targets of transphobic hate crimes, state violence, gender policing, discrimination in the workplace and various other issues related to their identities and safety.
“Safety is very important to our community, and that’s why we are working on this initiative,” said Judy Bowen, transgender advocate and active member of The Center.” We need to create a safe place for all LGBTQ+ individuals, but most importantly, for members of the transgender community.”
Funding provided by Bright Star Foundation in partnership with The Center expands the capacity of the LGBTQ Safety Dorm from nine to 18 guests nightly. Volunteers from The Center and the Human Rights Campaign built the donated bunk beds, generously provided by the Bright Star Foundation, and volunteers from Echelon Las Vegas, a youth auxiliary group of The Salvation Army, painted the facility, donated linens and gifted a flat-screen TV for the space.
“This is a very special opportunity to get involved and give back to the community,” said Juan Salinas, Director of Social Services for The Salvation Army Southern Nevada. “We began this initiative five years ago at a time when there weren’t as many safe housing options in the area. Over the years, we built a partnership with The Center to bring light to the issue, take action, and follow our mission to serve those in need.”
The Center is proud to offer resources for the entire LGBTQ+ community and its Nevada residents year-round. LGBTQ+ advocacy has never been easy and the work ahead will be challenging, but together, we will strengthen our communities, breakdown stigmas, build relationships in unexpected places and empower everyone to thrive in Nevada.
About The LGBTQ+ Center of Southern Nevada
For over 25 years, The Center has cared for, championed, and celebrated LGBTQ+ individuals and those who are underserved in Nevada. We function as the heart and home of the LGBTQ+ community by making connections, delivering programs, and providing a safe space for health and wellness, social services, arts and culture, advocacy and community building. Ongoing Center programs support LGBTQ+ youth, adults, families, seniors, vets, people with disabilities, those living with HIV, and those who are underserved. Additionally, we are proud to offer the Center Advocacy Network, the first nationally accredited program of its kind with a focus on LGBTQ issues for victim advocacy. For more information on how The Center empowers everyone to thrive in Nevada, please visit https://www.thecenterlv.org.
About The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army annually helps more than 23 million Americans overcome poverty, addiction, and economic hardships through a range of social services. By providing food for the hungry, clothing and shelter for the homeless, disaster and heat relief, senior activity and outreach, adult rehabilitation, and opportunities for underprivileged children, The Salvation Army is doing the most good at 7,600 centers of operation around the country. Approximately 82 cents of every dollar donated to The Salvation Army are used to support its social services. In the first-ever listing of “America’s Favorite Charities” by The Chronicle of Philanthropy, The Salvation Army ranked as the country’s largest privately funded, direct-service nonprofit. For more information, visit SalvationArmySouthernNevada.org, and follow us on Twitter @SalArmySoNV and #DoingTheMostGood.