After hearing that nearly 40% of New York’s youth homeless population is LGBT, Cyndi Lauper decided to put her money where her mouth is. Lauper, a long time gay rights advocate, is opening a homeless shelter for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender youth in New York.
Construction on Lauper’s 30-bed housing facility, which will be called “True Colors” after her 1986 single, begins today, September 1st, at West 154th St near Frederick Douglass Blvd in Manhattan.
Lauper said in a press release:
“In New York City, a very disproportionate number [up to 40 percent] of homeless youth identity as LGBT. Even more disturbing are reports that these young people often face discrimination and at times physical assault in some of the very places they have to go for help.”
The True Color Residency will feature studio apartments for each resident and both indoor and outdoor communal space to socialize. Lauper says that each resident will pay affordable rent based on their income and will receive assistance in finding a job. TRC will also provide social and educational programs.
“Our primary goal is to provide a physically and emotionally safe and supportive environment that will empower our young residents to be the self-loving, happy and successful individuals they were meant to be.”
According to the SF Weekely, 20 to 40 percent of the homeless youth population is gay, while only 3 to 5 percent of the general youth population is gay. LGBT teens also have a higher suicide rate and are “7 times more likely to experience sexual violence on the street.”
Here’s Cyndi Lauper’s “True Colors” music video.
Will Lauper’s TCR make a difference in New York?