“Because we need each other”: Announcing the Queer BIPOC Network

Graphic: "Update: Announcing the Queer BIPOC Network."

Time and again, we’ve witnessed systems ignore the experiences and contributions of communities of color — especially within professional settings. That’s why, earlier this month, we announced the Queer BIPOC Network, a statewide professional group answering the need for supportive, safe, and brave spaces for Black, Indigenous, and other queer people of color within New Jersey’s LGBTQ+ communities.

“The Queer BIPOC Network is needed because we need each other,” said Kevin E. Taylor, pastor, author, TV producer, and QBN Steering Committee member. “As we walk in the idea of self-care, we must move for the ideal of community care. We have the mentorship, support and even resources that we all need, and now what we need is the relationship, the engagement and the connection to feel safe and secure in our own community to reach out and build.”

To address issues affecting LGBTQ+ communities of color, the QBN will: create safe and supportive networking pathways; promote professional development for BIPOC professionals; and cultivate healthier BIPOC communities through education and resource distribution.

The goals of the Queer BIPOC Network include:

  • Building strong partnerships and encourage collaboration between BIPOC professionals, organizations, businesses, and healthcare institutions;
  • Bringing BIPOC voices and perspectives to the forefront of LGBTQ+ advocacy discussions;
  • Developing solution-oriented action plans to address racial equity disparities within New Jersey’s LGBTQ+ communities;
  • Educating BIPOC communities on their rights, anti-discrimination laws, and ways to navigate white supremacist systems;
  • Uplifting the queer and trans BIPOC leaders of tomorrow through youth advocacy and student opportunities;
  • Helping BIPOC institutions become more inclusive of their queer and trans members.

“Our stories deserve to be heard; our representation has the ability to move mountains!” said Garden State Equality Deputy Director Brielle Winslow-Majette. “Our programming will dismantle taboos that have plagued our communities and erased our histories. This group will continue the march forward toward more visible and inclusive communities.”

The network is open to emerging and mid-career professionals as well as anyone dedicated to securing lived equality for all BIPOC LGBTQ+ communities. If this seems like the group for you or someone you know, the Steering Committee application is due by January 29.

Check back soon for updates on the future of the Queer BIPOC Network, including the regular membership application!

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