PFLAG NYC's Safe Schools Program continues engaging students even online'PFLAG NYC’s Safe Schools Program continues engaging students even online

The Safe Schools Program brings community speakers to classrooms throughout New York City to share their personal experience of LGBTQ loved ones in their lives, or being an LGBTQ person themselves. Even remotely, students need to hear your story!

Before the pandemic, PFLAG NYC had brought the Safe Schools Program into schools in every part of New York City. Now online, we have the chance to be in every single school! Since March, when schools moved online, we have brought all our programs with students and educators into virtual schools.

Volunteer with the Safe Schools Program!

Community speakers make the Safe Schools Program powerful, because it is unlike any other experience students have. Ordinary people from the community — parents, other relatives, and LGBT people themselves — share their own stories of having an LGBTQ loved one, or of being LGBT themselves. These personal stories make the Safe Schools Program uniquely powerful in reaching students. As one educator told us, “The event was absolutely fabulous! Students commented that you never hear parents’ reactions and family stories. It was a new perspective for them. It was a really great program and led to great conversations!”

"If only my son, who years ago had sat in classrooms just like these and felt so alone with his feelings and concerns about being gay, had had the opportunity to hear presentations like these, I believe that it would have helped him so much."

In the 2020-21 school year even as students return to school part-time, we will continue to be in virtual classrooms. We always need more volunteers to be speakers in the program and share their story with school communities, and now you can do it without leaving home! Whether you are the parent of an LGBTQ person, someone with an LGBTQ loved one, or an LGBTQ person yourself, your story can help others learn what it means to be LGBTQ and help change the climate in schools for young people growing up, LGBTQ or not. You may not think your story is remarkable, but the most seemingly ordinary stories told honestly and proudly can spark revelations and change behavior.

Training Workshops for New and Current Speakers

For new volunteers, join us on October 10 for our next New Speaker Orientation Training. Learn how sharing your personal story can open dialogue, inspire students, and help schools make sure they are safe and affirming for LBGTQ students. Your story could save a life. Read more »

Black Family Circle — 4th Sunday of Every Month

For the last several years, PFLAG NYC has been steadily expanding the range of programs we offer to provide support to parents, families, and anyone with a loved one who is lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or queer (LGBTQ). Individuals who are in the LGBTQ community are also very welcome to join us for support in their coming out and relationships with family and friends. Meetings in more locations and meetings addressing specific needs based on language, culture, background or other experience have helped us reach more families than ever, and now that all meetings are taking place online, even geography is no obstacle.

Now we’re proud to announce the latest addition to our support offerings: Black Family Circle, a new group for black families. This new online meeting will provide a safe space for individuals who identify as Black and who have lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ+) loved ones to gather virtually and find community. This group will provide family-to-family support with a focus on the intersection of acceptance and one’s experience as a member of the Black diaspora. While the experiences of being Black in America vary tremendously, there are shared cultural factors that play a role in supporting a family’s well-being, resiliency and understanding when a loved one comes out as LGBTQ. Read more »

Trans New York by Peter Bussian

At PFLAG NYC, personal stories and storytelling are at the heart of everything we do, from providing support, offering education in schools and the community, and making change through activism. As soon as we saw an advance copy of Trans New York, we saw that this was a project that contributed much to awareness and understanding by making trans lives and the stories of transgender individuals visible and tangible to a wider audience.

Join us online on Thursday, June 18, at 8:00 p.m. for a virtual book launch featuring a panel discussion featuring the creator of Trans New York along with several individuals whose portraits appear. Read more »

Thursday Book Talks with PFLAG NYC

We’ve been doing a lot of reading lately. In May, we launched the first PFLAG NYC Book Club, reading The Savvy Ally and growing together as allies and activists. Over 30 people took part during four meetings through the month.

Now for Pride month we have something for every member of the family. We’re hosting a book event every Thursday evening in June. Join us as we explore a diverse selection of books of interest to our community.

During the first two weeks, we invite children under 10 to come check out some great picture books with parents, guardians, or whichever adult they want to share the experience with. In the second half of the month, we turn our focus to some adult books and will host events with authors.

All events are free and open to the public. For the June 4 and June 11 events, only adults attending together with children will be allowed.

Check out the full schedule below, and click on the link for each event to register. Read more »

Open Letter from LGBTQ Organizations Condemning Racist Violence

On the eve of Pride Month, we prepare to mark the 51st anniversary of the Stonewall Riots that are a key mile-marker in the struggle to claim full equality and civil rights for LGBTQ+ people. As we know and acknowledge from our own community’s experience, in the face of systemic violence and oppression not all progress is or should be peaceful.

In 2017, PFLAG NYC affirmed the Unity and Inclusion Policy of PFLAG National, committing our movement of families and allies united with LGBTQ+ people to strive to uphold the human dignity of all people and to fight discrimination and bigotry in any form so that all families can live free of fear.

Today PFLAG NYC signed on to the following joint letter of LGBTQ organizations condemning racist violence. We affirm that PFLAG NYC will be fully engaged with our movement partners in making “explicit commitments to embrace anti-racism and end white supremacy, not as necessary corollaries to our mission, but as integral to the objective of full equality for LGBTQ people.” Read more »