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Local groups to discuss LGBTQ+ domestic violence

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Marshall University students and faculty are invited to attend the Relationship Violence and LGBTQ+ Community Talk from 12 to 1 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 8 in the Shawkey dining room of the Memorial Student Center. Marshall’s Women and Gender Center is collaborating with Branches Domestic Violence Center in order to educate students on how people in queer spaces can deal with domestic abuse, and how others can help create safer environments for them.

“Often, conversations around domestic and relationship violence center around cisgender women,” Claire Snyder, program coordinator of the Women and Gender Center, said. “But we know that LGBTQ individuals also experience high rates of violence of all kinds.”

The interactive training session will be facilitated by Sara Blevins, an employee of Branches Domestic Violence Center. Participants will learn about how violence impacts the LGBTQ+ community, unique barriers that stop LGBTQ+ people from accessing proper resources, and what Marshall students can do to help.

“This training is for LGBTQ members and allies alike,” Snyder said. “It provides valuable information to all, and it’s powerful.”

Snyder said because LGBTQ+ members are often forgotten about in the important discussion of domestic violence, the Women and Gender Center feels it is important to include LGBTQ+ narratives in the discussion. This training will focus on how domestic violence is experienced differently by members of the LGBTQ+ community, and how people outside of that community can be best equipped to provide a safe space for victims and survivors.

Students are encouraged by Branches and by the Women and Gender Center to take part in this interactive training, and become part of the conversation in helping to put a stop to relationship violence.

Hannah Graham can be contacted at [email protected]

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