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Domestic Violence & the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual & Transgender Community

This section provides users with articles, legislative and case law updates, and other resources addressing New York-based legal rights and remedies available to gay, lesbian, bisexual transgender, and queer (GLBTQ) victims of intimate partner violence.

*Please be advised that both the state and national landscape regarding the legal rights of GLBTQ individuals and their families is a very complex, confusing, and quickly-evolving area of law.  These postings may not fully reflect current legal developments and users should not rely on this information as a source of legal advice.



LGBTQ Inclusion in Domestic Violence Programs
This training provides an overview of intimate partner violence in the LGBTQ community and how barriers further impact safety. It also outlines legal and ethical bases for inclusive practices in non-residential domestic violence programs. Read More

Legal Options for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender (GLBT) Domestic and Intimate Partner Violence Survivors in New York
In New York, many different types of civil (non-criminal) or criminal legal relief may be available to help you. However, because New York law doesn’t consistently recognize all GLBT relationships, certain legal protections may be challenging to obtain here. Read More

Marriage Equality: A Historic Victory for LGBT Families in New York
On June 24, 2011, New York became the sixth state to legalize same-sex marriage. Governor Cuomo immediately signed this historic legislation into law just shy of midnight making the new law effective on Sunday July 24. Read More

Domestic Violence & the GLBT Community: Articles


Equal Justice Fellow Fights for LGBT Equality
The Empire Justice Center on W. Main St. has been spearheading a project run by Hanna S. Cohn Equal Justice Fellow Julia Hall. Read More

Dickerson Decision: Press Coverage from Across New York
Press coverage of the ground breaking decision. Read More

Domestic Violence and the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual & Transgender Community: In the News


Empire Justice Letter of Support for Name Change Legislation
A.2242 (Bronson)/S.5240 (Savino) not only is in line with existing policy, but enhances and clarifies the law for name change applicants who need the benefit of the law’s critical safety protections. Read More

Empire Justice Memo of Support: Provide Critical Privacy Protections to Vulnerable Individuals Who Change Their Names
New York’s legislature has long understood that publication and release of sensitive information in name change proceedings places certain applicants at increased risk of harm - sometimes from the very people that the applicant is specifically seeking safety from. This bill not only is in line with existing policy, but enhances and clarifies the law for name change applicants who need the benefit of the law’s critical safety protections. Read More


Legal Services Journal - Summer 2011
The Summer 2011 Legal Services Journal reports on a wide range of poverty law topics with an emphasis on areas impacted by New York State budget cuts and other legislative activities. The issue reviews Empire Justice Center's 2011-2012 legislative priorities and includes an in-depth look at legislative activities in the domestic violence area. The Journal also reports on several key public benefits and health areas affected by the recent State budget cuts including child care, 24-hour home care and the EPIC program for seniors. Other articles address kinship guardianship, immigrant eligibility for food stamps, Medicaid Managed Care, standing to sue in foreclosure cases, upcoming changes in fair hearings, and the challenges faced by pro se litigants with disabilities when navigating the family court system. Thanks to all of our authors for their contributions to this issue of the Legal Services Journal. Read More


Working With LGBT(Q) Clients
This presenters discusses the research documenting the intersection of poverty and economic injustice in these communities. They will further address the emerging needs of LGBTQ-identified youth, including youth in the foster care and juvenile justice systems. Participants will also learn about ways that civil legal services office can create an inclusive, safe, and comfortable atmosphere both for clients, as well as LGBTQ staff. Read More