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Abuse in the LGBTQIA+ Community

Daya strives to be a welcoming and affirming space for survivors of all gender identities, gender expressions, and sexual orientations, providing culturally specific services that consider the many parts of their identities. All services are available to survivors of any gender and sexual orientation.

Research shows that LGBTQIA+ members experience domestic violence at equal or higher rates compared to their heterosexual counterparts (NCACV). Along with the cultural barriers, LGBTQIA+ survivors of South Asian descent face unique risks including: 


  • “Outing” or threatening to reveal one partner’s sexual orientation/gender identity may be used as a tool of abuse and may also reduce the survivor’s likelihood to seek help.


  • Prior experiences of physical or psychological trauma, such as bullying and hate crimes, may make LGBTQIA+ survivors less likely to seek help.

  • South Asian cultural taboos against identifying as LGBTQIA+ may keep survivors silenced or may result in harm from their family

  • Abusers may using offensive pronouns such as “it” to refer to transgender survivors

  • Abusers may ridicule transgender survivors’ bodies, appearances, or identities

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What does LGBTQIA+ Stand for:


  • Lesbian - female-identified people attracted romantically and/or emotionally to other female-identified people

  • Gay -  used to describe a number of things, including the LGBTQIA+ community as a whole, a single individual who does not identify as straight, and men who are attracted to other men in a romantic and/or emotional sense.

  • Bisexual - typically defined as someone who is attracted to people of their gender and other genders

  • Transgender - umbrella term used for people whose gender identity and/or gender expression differs from what is typically associated with the sex they were assigned at birth.

  • Queer or Questioning - Q in the acronymn has two meanings​​

    • Questioning - Non-heterosexual people who are still "questioning" their place within the queer community—whether that means that they are still unsure of their sexual orientation or gender identity

    • Queer - Often used as a blanket term to define the sexual preferences, orientations, and habits of the not-exclusively-heterosexual-and-monogamous majority

  • Intersex - people who are born with reproductive or sexual anatomy that doesn't fit the typical definitions of male and female

  • Asexual - those who do not feel a sexual attraction to others. Asexual people can often be romantically attracted to someone, but sexual attraction doesn't play a role in the relationship.

  • Plus (+) - used to symbolize and explain a number of different gender identities and sexual orientations that are not already present in the lettered acronym.

Sources: University of Illinois, Springfield's Gender and Sexuality Services, GLAAD, Bisexual Resource Center, Rainbow Welcome Initiative, Intersex Society of North America

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