LGBT+ domestic violence hotline at risk

Reggie Myers

Reggie Myers is a writer and communications professional living in Philadelphia, Pa., where he graduated from Temple University. Music, television, film, books, video games, politics, and human sexuality are just a few of the many things that make him tick. When he's not working behind a computer screen, you can find him looking for new adventures, practicing photography, scheming ways to get to the front row of a concert, or scouring the corners of the internet for new music to put his friends on to. @reggieakil

Another LGBT+ organisation may be shutting down due to lack of government funding in the UK. This time, it is the organisation Broken Rainbow that is facing cuts to their services.

This may be another unfortunate blow to the domestic violence hotline, which is already struggling. According to Pink News, the hotline can only have one person handling phone calls at a time, meaning callers may not be able to get through to someone.

LGBT+ domestic violence is an issue which is often overlooked. Last May, a 2013 ROAR study found LGBT+ people are twice as likely to experience domestic abuse, and half of the victims say they don’t know where to find help.

Two organisation staffers made the following statements:

‘For our funding not to be renewed or replaced will result in the helpline being closed down,’ said Wendy Wilde, Broken Rainbow’s service delivery manager.

‘We supported over five thousand people this year and if we were to close there are very few other services for them to go to and not one that offers national support in the way we do.’

‘Other funding options are limited and through we have been lucky enough to bring in some smaller grants, it hasn’t been enough to cover the cost of the helpline,’ said Jo Harvey-Barringer, the managing director.

‘We cannot capture the large corporate funding streams like Stonewall and often engaging corporate funders is incredibly hard due to the nature of the work we do. It’s much easier for them to support LGBT organisations that aren’t confronting something unpalatable within our own community.’

Broken Rainbow is not the only organisation facing these cuts. According to The Gay UK, other charities facing this issue include Terrence Higgins Trust, GMFA, and the London and Lesbian Gay Switchboard. Also, it was recently announced that one of the few domestic violence shelters that accept gay and bisexual men (in Hammersmith and Fulham) may also be closing – meaning the nearest shelter for men in London is in Berkshire.

Thankfully, Broken Rainbow is not willing to accept defeat so easily. The organisation launched a crowdfunding campaign for donations today which you can find online at GoFundMe.

If you are unfamiliar with Broken Rainbow and their work, you can learn more at their website.

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