This past week, from May 17 to May 21, 2021, we celebrated the third annual Zero Homophobia Week, led by Oasis Latino LGBTQIA+ Wellness Center and Latino Commission AIDS. This yearly weeklong initiative of events, workshops, and discussions raises awareness for homophobia within the Hispanic and Latinx communities.
What is Zero Homophobia Week?
Zero Homophobia week kicked off on May 17 with The International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia, and Transphobia (IDAHOBIT). This day is a worldwide call to action and celebration of Sexual and Gender Diversities. Launched in 2004, this day is used to draw attention to the violence, discrimination, and systemic oppression LGBTQIA+ individuals worldwide face daily.
As its website notes, IDAHOBIT "is not one centralized campaign; rather it is a moment that everyone can take advantage of to take action, on whatever issue and in whatever format that they wish." The date of May 17 was chosen to commemorate the World Health Organization's approval of ICD 10 in 1990, which declassified homosexuality as a mental disorder.
May 17 is now celebrated in more than 130 countries, including 37 where same-sex acts are illegal.
This year’s theme is #myallyis, which allows folks in the LGBTQIA+ community to identify who in their lives encompass their communities and safe spaces. It also allows allies to exercise their support and allyship towards the queer community.
Homophobia & Transphobia are public health issues
Homophobia, transphobia, and other forms of intolerance toward the LGBTQIA+ community is not only a moral and societal concern but is also a public health issue. Various studies show that LGBTQIA+ youth who are bullied are at a higher risk for mental and health issues. Zero Homophobia reports:
- 4 in 10 LGBTQIA+ youth say the community in which they live is not accepting of LGBTQIA+ people.
- 26% of LGBTQIA+ youth say their biggest problems are not feeling accepted by their family, trouble at school/bullying, and fear to be out/open.
- Only about half (53%) of LGBTQIA+ Latinx youth are out to their immediate family; more than a quarter (29%) are out to their extended family and only 17% are out to their doctors.
Resources for supporting the LGBTQIA+ & battling homophobia
- Center of Disease Control: LGBTQIA+ Youth Resources
- GLAAD: LGBTQIA+ Resources
- The Trevor Project: LGBTQIA+ Youth Resources
Apicha CHC Blog Posts for LGBTQIA+ Folks:
- Domestic Violence Awareness LGBTQI+ Resource Guide!
- What to Know Before Your First Therapy Appointment
- All About PrEP: HIV Prevention
- Transgender Sexual Health Guide: Safer Sex
- Covering Your Bases: What's an ST
Apicha CHC Blog Posts for Allies:
- Why LGBT Bullying is a Problem and How We Can Fight It
- Why Personal Pronouns Matter, Especially for the LGBTQ+ Community
- How to Support Someone Who is Transitioning
- Gender Neutral Alternatives You Can Start Using Today
- What’s the Difference Between Nonbinary and Genderqueer?
How Apicha CHC can help you
Apicha CHC is an LGBTQIA+ inclusive community health center in New York City that provides a variety of culturally competent health care services. We offer primary care, HIV specialty care, transgender primary care, sexual health services, behavioral health services as well as community education programs that are tailored to serve the LGBTQIA+ community. We welcome and provide a safe space for everyone.