To bring best practices to social-service professionals who encounter LGBTQ teens, the Human Rights Campaign Foundation is holding Time to THRIVE, a three-day conference in Las Vegas beginning February 14.
The legal campaign for gay rights unfolds mostly in the courthouse and statehouse. But the conference is designed to take the campaign for acceptance and wellbeing of young people who are LGBTQ into schools, churches, neighborhoods and families.
According to Washington, D.C. lawyer Garry Bevel, LGBTQ rights are not newly devised rights, but a matter of applying basic U.S. civil rights to non-heterosexuals.
The conference goal, according to director Vinnie Pompei, is to go beyond merely protecting LGBTQ teens from physical harm and discrimination, so they can grow up feeling included and valued by society. “We want to bring together these various national experts and organizations, and (their) emerging best practices,” he explained.
Being in the minority is tough in any locale, but LGBTQ youth in rural America face challenges their urban counterparts do not.