It’s been such a rousing P.R. success, the “Safe Place” program started by the Seattle Police Department and the City of Seattle last May will be expanded to the Seattle Public School District.
Safe Place is a “public education and visibility program aimed at preventing and responding to anti-LGBTQ bias crimes”. It largely consists of businesses placing a “Safe Place” rainbow sticker on their front door signifying that the business is a safe haven for LGBTQ people and free from bullying or violence. Businesses participating in the program are also instructed on how to dial 911 in case of an emergency involving a hate crime against LGBTQ people and how to shelter such victims until police arrive.
Today, the office of Seattle Mayor Ed Murray, with Seattle Police Chief Kathleen O’Toole and Seattle Public Schools Superintendent Larry Nyland released the news that the program will be extended to all 98 Seattle Public Schools. No time frame was given for the implementation of the program.
From the press release:
“While we see a rolling back of civil rights protections for LGBTQ people in some corners of the country, Seattle remains inclusive and welcoming to all people,” said Mayor Ed Murray. “SPD Safe Place brings together businesses, community organizations, and the public to stand up against hate and intolerance. I applaud Seattle Public Schools for bringing this important program to our schools, empowering students to speak out against anti-LGBTQ harassment.”
“We are thrilled that SPD Safe Place is growing through a partnership with Seattle Public Schools,” said Chief Kathleen O’Toole. “We want to create a safe, inclusive community for everyone and are encouraged by the ongoing support we have received for this program.”
“Our district is proud to partner with the City and the Seattle Police Department to make all of our schools Safe Places,” said Seattle Public Schools Superintendent Larry Nyland. “This is a continuation of our commitment to ensuring all our students feel safe and equal in our schools”
SPD Safe Place program has reached 1,600 locations. Businesses, organizations and educational institutions can request SPD Safe Place placards or posters and learn about how to work with police to prevent and address anti-LGBT crime concerns at http://www.seattle.gov/spd-safe-place/
You’re still screwed if you’re running for you life down Bellevue Avenue at 3 am but to be fair, anything that might help queer kids being bullied is a good thing.
Also: the stickers are pretty.