Local high school implements LGBTQ ‘safe zone’

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — The Health Sciences Charter school has considered itself a safe zone for LGBTQ students since the start of the year. It was implemented back in January to promote a proactive discussion about gender and sexuality.

The safe zone is all about encouraging open conversations without fear or judgement. Ten teachers at the school volunteered to go through training to learn how to answer questions and handle potential situations that could arise in a school setting. Several teachers have safe zone signs outside their classroom doors.

There is also an LGBTQ club at the high school as well.

“If the signs are up even if they don’t feel comfortable coming out or talking about it they can still see physical representations that this is alright, it’s ok. And so I’m very conscious that students who are coming out or questioning need that kind of safety net and that kind of comfort of I’m not willing to talk about this it’s too dangerous to talk about this but I see these signs, the school is thinking about me,” said Christopher Culp, Americorps ABLE member.

Gay and lesbian youth services are also offered at several other middle schools and high schools in Western New York. A list is available at the following link: http://www.glyswny.org/gay-straight-alliances/wny-gsas/

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