North Carolina Legislature Fails to Protect LGBTQ Constituents

Today, the North Carolina legislature called a special session where, according to Governor McCrory, they would “reconsider existing state legislation” in reference to House Bill 2 which is frequently referred to as the “bathroom bill.” In reality the bill does so much more than restrict bathroom access, it also limits LGBTQ rights by not allowing for local anti-discrimination ordinances. The session was called in response to a Monday night vote by the Charlotte City council to rescind their local law (a non-discrimination ordinance) that originally led to the statewide HB2, according to the Charlotte Observer.  Rescinding the local ordinance was meant to allow for full repeal of HB2.  The North Carolina legislature today debated a repeal that would have also added a six-month moratorium on any local anti-discrimination ordinances. They failed to repeal HB2, thereby failing their LGBTQ constituents.

Abbe Land, Executive Director and CEO of The Trevor Project said, “We are outraged that the North Carolina legislature is continuing its practice of discrimination against transgender and gender nonconforming people and they leave the entire LGBTQ community open to discrimination. The actions in North Carolina show how important our work at The Trevor Project is and we remain committed to fighting for the future of LGBTQ youth.”  Anyone in need of crisis intervention services is encouraged to call the Trevor Lifeline at 866.488.7386.  The lifeline is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days of the year.

According to our colleagues at Lambda Legal and the ACLU, “H.B. 2 bans transgender people from accessing restrooms and public facilities consistent with their gender identity and prevents local municipalities from extending nondiscrimination protections to LGBT people. H.B. 2 is estimated to have cost North Carolina over $600 million in lost revenue from businesses concerned with the discriminatory nature of the law, and was a contributing factor in the election defeat of the outgoing Governor Pat McCrory.”


Thank you for making TrevorLIVE LA 2016 a spectacular and moving celebration!

Our staff and volunteers here at The Trevor Project could not be more grateful for all the support from our entire Trevor family on December 4th, making this year’s TrevorLIVE such an astonishing success. Thanks to you, our supporters, and to everyone who watched or attended, we raised nearly $1,000,000. That goes a long way to helping keep our Lifeline available to all LGBTQ youth who need us, especially during this holiday season.

Thanks to Special Guest Director, Chris Folkens, guest Producer Dan Bucantinsky, and to the exceptional performers, supporters, staff, board members, and volunteers who worked tirelessly to make the evening truly magical.  Hosted by the always outrageous Bruce Vilanch, guests and everyone watching the official Facebook Livestream event were treated to appearances by Lance Bass, Margaret Cho, Chloe Grace Moretz, Lana Parrilla, Pauley Perrette, Leslie Jordan, and Dana Goldberg, to name just a few, as well as honorees Kelly Osbourne, Facebook (Trevor 20/20 Visionary), and Ingrid Nilsen (Trevor Digital Innovator). We were also treated to the musical gifts of Our Lady J, Brian Justin Crum, Trans Chorus of Los Angeles, Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles, and an incredibly moving performance by Ty Herndon, who is donating his share of the proceeds from his hit song, Fighter, to support Trevor’s work to save young lives.

If you missed it, you can still watch the red carpet and the full show from our official Facebook Livestream!  Find your favorite celebrities in our red carpet album, as well as photos of performers and speakers in our TrevorLIVE album on Facebook.

This celebration would not be possible without our Presenting Sponsors, AT&T (who surprised us with an additional gift of $25,000!), Goldman Sachs, and Three Olives. We thank all our generous corporate sponsors for helping us offset event costs, ensuring the money raised at TrevorLIVE goes directly to supporting LGBTQ youth in crisis.

Thanks to your overwhelming support, TrevorLIVE has nearly reached our goal of $1,000,000. If you weren’t able to donate at TrevorLIVE, you can still support LGBTQ+ youth by joining our Winter Challenge before the end of 2016! Ever dollar helps support lifesaving crisis counseling for LGBTQ youth who need to know: they are not alone.


Welcome Interim Executive Director Steve Mendelsohn and VP of Marketing Sheri Lunn!

The Trevor Project thanks Steve Mendelsohn, who is stepping in to lead us in the new year as the Interim Executive Director.  Steve has served as the Deputy Executive Director at The Trevor Project for the past 4+ years.  In this capacity, he oversees the development of the organization’s strategic plan, manages marketing and communications, participates in advancement, community engagement, and advocacy, and helps represent Trevor externally.  Prior to The Trevor Project, Steve was the Executive Director of several media non-profits, including Project Rebirth (which created the Peabody Award winning documentary REBIRTH), FilmAid International (which uses the power of film to help refugees) and Arts Engine (a documentary film non-profit).  He also spent 15 years in the corporate world, working at American Express and Razorfish.  Steve has an MBA from Harvard Business School and an undergraduate degree from the University of Pennsylvania.

The Trevor Project also welcomes longtime LGBTQ equality advocate Sheri Lunn to the role of Vice President of Marketing and Strategic Engagement.   A nonprofit organization executive with extensive experience in marketing, public relations, communications and development, for nearly 20 years Sheri has dedicated her career to working for nonprofit organizations dedicated to social justice, equality and healthcare.  Her nonprofit career began in the Policy & Public Affairs Department of the L.A. LGBT Center where she served as Media Director, then was Director of Communications at the National Gay & Lesbian Task Force,  Associate Director of Marketing and Development of AIDS/LifeCycle, Director of Communications for the March of Dimes, and Sr. Director of Public Affairs for AbilityFirst, where she oversaw their marketing, volunteer recruitment, outreach, and advocacy teams. Her Board service includes: Vice President of the ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives, and she currently serves as a City of Los Angeles elected official on the Historic Highland Park Neighborhood Council. Sheri has undergraduate degrees in Broadcast Journalism and American Sign Language Interpreting, and a Master’s degree in Leadership & Management with a concentration on nonprofit organizations.


A Message from Abbe Land: Looking Back Over the Past Five Years

Dear Friends,

As we approach the 2016 holidays, and we get ready for the new year and a change in our political landscape, I want to let you know that I too am getting ready for a big change.  After nearly 5 years as the Executive Director and CEO of The Trevor Project, I will be leaving this amazing organization at the end of the year.

And, as difficult as it is for me to move on, I am proud of the many accomplishments at The Trevor Project in the years that I have been here.  For example:

  • We have expanded the budget over 100% and significantly expanded the staff and volunteer pool
  • We launched the organization’s first research and evaluation project, which has quantitatively proven that Trevor is effective at saving young lives
  • We added an Advisory Board of experts to help inform the our programs
  • We added Trevor’s digital programs, Chat and Text, to meet youth where they are
  • We built a new platform for TrevorSpace to help prevent suicide among youth around the world
  • We expanded Trevor’s public policy work and successfully sponsored legislation in CA and Washington, DC
  • We helped make Trevor the go-to place for anyone discussing LGBTQ youth and suicide

Being part of the Trevor family has been one of the most important parts of my life.  I am constantly in awe of the amazing, dedicated staff, volunteers and supporters who keep the organization strong every single day.

This year has been extraordinary, there have been some real highs, and some awful lows, that will impact us for a long time.  But through it all, Trevor has been there saving young LGBTQ lives.  And Trevor will continue to be there – thanks to all of you.

But most importantly, I know first-hand that the organization will continue to thrive.  And that’s because of its current leadership which includes a strong board of directors, led by co-chairs Stacy Smithers and Michael Norton, Steve Mendelsohn, our deputy executive director who will become the Interim Executive Director, and the incredibly talented leadership team of Jeremy Ancalade, David Bond, Jack McCurley and our newest addition, Sheri Lunn.

Though I will no longer be running the organization day in and day out, this is not really a good-bye.  That’s because I intend to remain part of the Trevor family – as a volunteer, as a supporter, and as a friend.  No matter what, I will always be here for Trevor and for all of you!

Truly,

Abbe Land
Executive Director and CEO
The Trevor Project


Survey of Trans Adults Shows High Need for Suicide Prevention Services

We congratulate our friends at the National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE) who today released the largest survey of transgender people ever conducted. Their findings reveal significant disparities between transgender people and the rest of the U.S. population across a range of categories. The 2015 U.S. Transgender Survey (USTS) examined the experiences of transgender people across the United States, with 27,715 respondents from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico, and U.S. military bases overseas. The USTS serves as a follow-up to the groundbreaking 2008-2009 National Transgender Discrimination Survey (NTDS), which has been integral in shifting how the public and policymakers view transgender people and the challenges they face.

Among the starkest findings is that 40% of respondents have attempted suicide in their lifetime—nearly nine times the attempted suicide rate in the U.S. population (4.6%).  As David Crary reports in the Washington Post, “There have been some important gains for transgender rights in the years between the two surveys, but the new survey showed little or no improvement in terms of transgender people’s day-to-day experiences with bias,” and that the survey “paints a grim picture of pervasive discrimination and harassment” against the transgender community. The full survey report is available at www.ustranssurvey.org.

While we still have a long way to go, the improved visibility and acceptance highlighted by the report may be an indicator that we are moving in the right direction in some aspects.  60% of respondents reported that their family was accepting of them as a transgender individual and 68% of those out to their coworkers report acceptance in the workplace.

The Trevor Project is the leading national organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning youth.  We encourage transgender youth to reach out to us via the Trevor Lifeline 24/7 at 1-866-488-7386.