Hot Lines & Crisis Intervention,
Mission: The new york city gay and lesbian anti-violence project (avp) provides direct services, including a 24-hour hotline, counseling, advocacy and accompaniment, as well as support groups, legal services and a speaker's bureau, to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and hiv-affected victims of hate violence, sexual assault, stalking, and intimate partner violence. Avp also works with the communities we serve to respond to and prevent violence through organizing, public advocacy, policy work, training and education. Avp coordinates a statewide intimate partner violence network in new york state and a national coalition of anti-violence programs nationwide.
Programs: Community organizing and public advocacy: avps community organizing efforts reached more than 75,000 people in fiscal year 2015 with one-to-one handouts of information about violence facing lgbtq people and safer-sex materials throughout new yorks five boroughs. Avp organizes city-wide responses to specific violent incidents throughout new york city through our rapid incident response process, and creates campaigns through our community action committees that address lgbtq and hiv-affected peoples safety. In addition, avp collaborates closely with community leaders and community-based organizations to raise awareness about the intersection of lgbtq and hiv-affected identities and violence. Our popular safebar*safenights program in particular is designed to stop pick-up violence and dating violence before it happens by working with bars and clubs to alert their patrons and staff of the dangers of pick-up violence, distributing safety tips, and encouraging the reporting of such incidents to avp. Related, this year avp also launched the for a safe time campaign, an innovative advertising campaign aimed at reaching an ever-increasing number of lgbtq and hiv-affected new yorkers who experience violence while using online dating sites and apps. Avp has developed the community leadership institute, where survivors of violence and allies learn to engage in community organizing and public advocacy through skill-based curricula. One part of the community leadership institute, avps speakers bureau, allows clients and community members to share their stories to educate school and community groups and service provides about how to prevent violence, and what to do if they or someone they know is affected by violence against or within lgbtq and hiv-affected communities. This year, avp revised our speakers bureau curriculum to include a media training to prepare survivors for public speaking engagements. Each year, through its training and education institute, avp trains thousands of individuals and groups including community members, police, district attorneys offices, rape crisis centers, domestic violence agencies and other mainstream health and human service provides. In fiscal year 2015, avp conducted 229 trainings reaching 6,365 participants through our education and training institute. Avps training and education institute also serves as a clearinghouse for the most up-to-date information, studies, articles, and curricula on the issue of violence, and serves as a research resource for people across the country who are studying violence against or within lgbtq and hiv-affected communities.
direct client services: avps client services department provides direct social services that are designed to meet lgbtq and hiv-affected survivors unique and individual needs through a survivor-centered, trauma-informed, empowerment-based, harm reduction approach. The department is staffed by direct service professionals with expertise and experience in meeting the specific needs of new york citys diverse lgbtq and hiv-affected survivors, starting with our free 24-hour, bilingual (english/spanish) hotline, which in fiscal year 2015 answered 2,618 calls. Last year avp also provided vital direct client services, including short and long term counseling, advocacy with the police, courts, and other social service and supportive services providers, to 1,294 individual clients experiencing all forms of violence. Avp provides opportunities for survivors to build community and safety in our extensive group programming, which includes distinct support groups for hate violence, sexual violence, and intimate partner violence, as well as support groups that focus specifically on transgender and gender-nonconforming communities. Since 2010, avp has expanded its direct client services intake sites to 10 locations throughout the five boroughs and has developed specialized programs working with transgender and gender non-conforming people of color.
legal services: beginning in 2013, avp launched a legal services program which provides free, holistic, direct legal services to underserved lgbtq and hiv-affected survivors of violence across all five boroughs of new york city. Services range from intake, advice, and representation on issues such as orders of protection, child support, child custody, legal separation/divorce, immigration matters, housing matters, name changes and representation as complaining witnesses in criminal court as clients need these services. Client referrals to the legal services department primarily come thorough avps client services department, as well as other community-based organizations. In fiscal year 2015, our legal services department provided full legal intake and consultation to 146 new clients, 85 of whom were accepted for representation.