It Gets Better: Harlem Responds to Gay Suicides

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There have been at least nine gay youth suicides over the past two months. Some have called this issue an epidemic and are searching for a solution, as the topic of gay bullying and suicide prevention has earned national coverage.

Thousands of people, including celebrities as well as the President, have taken to the Internet to post their personal message of hope for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer (LGBTQ) teens, assuring them that “It gets better.”

Schools are beginning to take notice of this suicide surge. While this has only recently become national news, gay suicide is neither new nor uncommon. Organizations like The Trevor Project and the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN) have been in existance for years, working to prevent suicide and make schools safer for LGBTQ youth.

Prior to this year’s midterm elections, this is what four Harlem community members and passers-by felt should be done to improve the lives of LGBT[Q] youth.


Jerome Royal, 26, on the power of words and their affect on gay youth:

Jerome Royal

Lloyd McGee, 51, advocates for teacher sensitivity training:
Lloyd McGee advocates for sensitivity training.

Corey McBryde, 36, on the need for outreach despite the gay “trend:”
Corey McBryde, 36, on the need for outreach despite the gay “trend.”

Tokes Osubu says the LGBTQ community needs to stand up and be counted:
Tokes Osubu says the LGBTQ community needs to stand up and be counted

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