The letters LGBTQ used collectively create an initialism that refers to individuals who identify themselves as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or queer or questioning.
Violence occurs at the same rate in LGBTQ communities as in the heterosexual community. However, for a variety of reasons, LGBTQ victims of crime often experience unique barriers to reporting and do not have consistent access to culturally competent services to help them prevent and recover from violence.
Most victim assistance agencies lack outreach to LGBTQ victims, LGBTQ cultural competence training for staff, LGBTQ-specific policies and practices, and collaboration with LGBTQ service providers. As a result, LGBTQ victims suffer disproportionately from violence and its aftereffects.