New Report Urges Collaboration Between Racial Justice & LGBTQ Organizations

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                           

Contact: Jumoke Balogun, (816) 517-0354, jbalogun@advancementproject.org

September 14, 2015                                                  

                                                                                   

New Report Urges Collaboration Between Racial Justice and LGBTQ Organizations to Address School Discipline Crisis

Report from Advancement Project, Equality Federation, and Gay Straight Alliance Network, Provides an Intersectional Approach to Dismantling the School-to-Prison Pipeline

WASHINGTON – Research shows that students of color and LGBT students are more likely to be disciplined than their White, non-LGBT peers.  Students with intersectional identities, such as Black transgender youth or gay undocumented youth, are at even greater risk.

On Monday, September 14, Advancement Project, Equality Federation and Gay Straight Alliance Network released “Power in Partnerships: Building Connections at the Intersections to End the School-to-Prison Pipeline,” a new report intended to serve as a resource for LGBT and racial justice organizations interested in working together to address disparities in school discipline along lines of race, gender and sexual orientation.

 “The exclusion and suspension techniques used to discipline me all throughout middle school is how I have personally experience the school-to-prison pipeline,” said Zeam Porter, a student with Gay Straight Alliance Network. “The countless times I have spent physically outside of the classroom for being made the class example still has me second guessing my intelligence.”

“LGBT students, students of color, and LGBT students of color are also uniquely impacted by school issues such as being called disrespectful, violating dress codes, being a victim of or perpetrator of bullying, and dealing with police in schools,” said Thena Robinson-Mock, Advancement Project’s Ending the Schoolhouse to Jailhouse Track Campaign Project Director. “In order to solve these issues, we must create sensible policies that take into account the distinct needs of these populations, prioritize getting to the root of problems, and offer specific, appropriate solutions that keep students in school.” 

“Youth belong in schools not jails. From New Mexico to Florida to Minnesota, we’ve seen local LGBT and racial justice groups build powerful partnerships to end the school-to-prison pipeline and make a real difference in the lives of young people,” said Ian Palmquist, Equality Federation’s Director of Leadership Programs. “Now it’s time to take the lessons we’ve learned and build stronger collaborations across the country that can ensure that students of all races, gender identities, and sexual orientations get education not incarceration.”

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ADVANCEMENT PROJECT is a national, next-generation, multiracial civil rights organization that supports grassroots movements that aim to dismantle the school-to-prison pipeline.

EQUALITY FEDERATION INSTITUTE is the strategic partner and movement builder to state-based organizations that are working on the ground to advance policies that improve the lives of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people.

GAY STRAIGHT ALLIANCE NETWORK is a next-generation LGBTQ racial and gender justice organization that empowers and trains trans, queer, and allied youth leaders to advocate, organize, and mobilize an intersectional movement for safer schools and healthier communities