Volume 95, Issue 4

Thursday, June 14, 2001


London's bad air is deadly: Armstrong

Bookstore branches off-campus

Program targets anti-gay violence

Premier Harris labelled murderer

News Briefs

New biotech centre founded

We're 7th best: Area health care ranks high

Program targets anti-gay violence

By Clare O'Hara
Gazette Staff

A new youth program, starting at Western this summer, will focus on reducing anti-gay violence and discrimination within the London community.

The new program, called “Seen and Heard: Youth Anti-Violence Education Project,” is a year-long project with all workshops based in the London area.

“We have various workshops that allow groups of young people who are gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgendered to explore what it means to be gay,” said Julie Glaser, project co-ordinator.

The workshops are all run by community artists, writers and musicians who will show these youths how to express themselves through their art. They will deal with issues that the youth may come across at school, home or in the community.

The entire program is funded by Western's faculty of education and the Canadian Department of Justice through the National Crime Prevention Centre's community mobilization program.

“I know that this is an extremely beneficial program. The research is quite clear [that] bisexual/gay/lesbian suicide rates and the violence in schools among these individuals are all quite high. This program will help individuals deal with these issues and know they are not alone,” said Rebecca Coulter, associate dean of the faculty of education.

The AIDS committee of London also fully supports this new program. “We think positive self-esteem amongst any sexual orientation of youth helps us to deal with the prevention of HIV/AIDS,” said Pam Hill, director of education for the AIDS committee, adding, “We know that the program will promote healthy attitudes towards sex and sexuality.”

The end result of the program will be compiled in a digital video which will be available to schools throughout London.

“The digital video will be available via the Internet and allow the community to be educated. Also, some of the participants of the program are going to be trained as peer ambassadors and help do workshops in the classroom environment,” Glaser said.

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