Posted by Veralice Navarro

June 1st marks the start of PRIDE month, a celebration of all LGBTQ+ members and their identities. This celebration honors the 1960 Stonewall Uprising and its role as a tipping point for the Gay Liberation Movement in the 60s. All across the nation, members of the LGBTQ+ celebrate their identities


The Rotary Club to End Human Trafficking also wants to highlight the overlap between the LGBTQ+ community and human trafficking.

Members of this community, more specifically youth, are disproportionately vulnerable to human traffickers. LGBTQ+ youth are disproportionately more likely to be forced out of their homes and be outcasts of their communities due to their sexuality and gender identities. A lack of funding in homeless shelters and the discrimination of the LGBTQ+ community in some spaces, leave these youth with very few resources and safe spaces. A lack of bed spaces and shelters willing to take them in leaves many to find refuge in the streets. From here this homeless population from this community is incredibly vulnerable to traffickers and sexual exploitation. Reports are that within 48 hours of being on the streets, one in three homeless youth will be recruited by a trafficker into commercial sexual exploitation. The individuals captured by traffickers are victims of physical, mental, and sexual abuse. The abuse coupled with a lack of resources and the stigma surrounding same-sex prostitution leads to a continuous cycle of abuse.


The LGBTQ+ community’s presence in human trafficking is often ignored and shunned from the spotlight. This community relies on specialized outreach and support programs, and they need funding.


The Rotary Club to End Human Trafficking wants to highlight organizations and programs to help LGBTQ+ victims of homelessness and human trafficking: