March 7, 2011
We, the undersigned Queer Asian Pacific Islander groups, are very concerned with the LGBT Community Center’s decision on canceling the scheduled March 5th “Party to End Apartheid” event. The Center has a long history in providing a space, for many LGBTQ and other vulnerable groups, to hold dialogue and give voices to explore conflicts, issues and resolutions. The Siegebusters Working Group, while not identified a LGBTQ group, it is a minority voice seeking to address oppression and deserves a safe space.
In cancelling this event and disallowing Siegebusters Working Group from meeting at the Center, the center comes across as supporting censorship. The LGBTQ movement has always had many voices, and suppressing these voices does not serve to make the center a “safe haven for LGBT groups and individuals.” Social justice and open dialogue has always been a central part of LGBTQ organizing. Many of us in the QAPI Community believe that queer rights are human rights, and therefor human rights issues in the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict are inexorably linked to our struggle for queer rights.
We are pleased to know that there will be an open forum to help clarify and possibly amend this decision, and we believe that the outcome will be supported with full consideration of justice. LGBTQ minorities have always found a safe space at the center, and we hope that this space continues to exist for us. Thank you very much.
SALGA, Q-WAVE & GAPIMNY