Campus transforms into safe haven for LGBT students
Published: Thursday, November 1, 2012
Updated: Thursday, November 1, 2012 22:11
Project Safe Haven is turning departments and offices around campus into safe places for lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, transgender and questioning students.
Lambda, Tech’s gay-straight alliance, started the project to give LGBTQ students safe places to talk and get resources after bullying and suicide numbers among the LGBTQ community have been on the rise.
“TTU Lambda GSA started it mostly because of the bullying and suicide epidemic that has affected a lot of LGBT individuals,” Abel Howard, junior and GSA president, said. “A lot of students come out to their teachers first before their peers. High schools and universities all over the United States have a Safe Haven project for this reason. We also wanted to expand the places the students would be able to get information for questions they have. It also means a lot to someone our age to see older generations and people we respect support us.”
The Safe Havens make information such as hotline numbers available, and members of the Safe
Haven will be available for students to talk to about difficult LGBTQ issues.
“Students will be given tons of information on different topics surrounding the LGBT community, from suicide prevention to coming out to your family and friends,” Howard said. “They will also have an ally they can speak to, which is a wonderful feeling.”
The Women’s Center signed up to be the first Safe Haven on campus.
“Women’s centers have historically been safe havens without really calling themselves that,”
Diana Lalani, secretary for the women’s center, said. “Women understand what it is to be the underdog.
Women’s organizations embrace diversity.”
Students can get involved with by joining GSA and visiting the TTU Safe Haven Facebook page.