Victims with Pride 🌈

Written By: Jennifer Kloesel, Information and Referral Specialist

June is Pride Month and this year marks the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots that acted as a catalyst for the gay rights movement. Though we have made great progress in these past 50 years, statistics show that we, as a country, still have more to learn about tolerance.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) released the hate crime statistics for 2017 and based off of their data, hate crimes have increased by 17% from 2016. 2017 saw over 7,000 reported hate crimes and it is estimated that the number of unreported crimes were just as significant. About a thousand of those reported crimes were due to sexual orientation, which is a 5% increase from the preceding year.

Chart above was pulled from “Hate Crimes and Violence Against Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender People

Research conducted by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation stated that 54% of LGBTQ people say they are concerned about being the victim of a hate crime. However, most Americans do not share this same fear, with less than 10% of the general population worrying about being a victim of a hate crime.

These numbers are not only troubling for the LGBTQ community, but for our nation as well. Education and awareness are the first steps in putting an end to hate crimes (of all types). For this year’s Pride Month, read more about how Pride Month came to be and how you can help support the cause!

If you, or someone you know, has been the victim of a hate crime, know that there are resources available to you. Please contact the Washington State Crime Victim Service Center Hotline at 888-288-9221 for help.

Call Our 24-Hour Crisis Line

Speak with a trained advocate who can provide assistance with needs resulting from victimization.  Call by clicking below! 


"With the help of VSS, you are empowered and encouraged to fight back and be pro-active. Then your conscience can be more at peace because you know you have taken some action to protest crimes inflicted on your loved one. It is sometimes your only consolation."

“The one takeaway for me in working with VSS is that it is a necessary organization. I know they are funded by grants and fundraisers but it’s something we need to make sure as a community that they have the funding needed because what they do for people in need doesn’t happen anywhere else. This is the only place that this happens and VSS helps with so many things.”

David Rose

Anchor, Q13 News and Host, Washington’s Most Wanted

“VSS is there when the unthinkable happens.  When a police officer knocks on your door and gives you tragic news, VSS helps navigate the court system, which can be very confusing. VSS is compassion, caring, and commitment. Commitment to once justice is done that victims and their families can move forward with their lives.”

Jennifer Gregerson

Mayor, City of Mukilteo

“VSS has been our partner in recovery and healing and a key part in what makes Mukilteo Strong. VSS has been a trusted advocate for the victims that have suffered so much in the community.  I’m so grateful to VSS as our partner in strength.”

Jon Nehring

Mayor, City of Marysville

“VSS is there for people in their darkest hour. At a time when they need an advocate and friend, VSS steps in to fill that gap and help them begin their journey back to some sense of normalcy.” 

Myrle Carner

Crime Stoppers of Puget Sound

“This thing about closure. There is never really closure in a victim’s life but VSS helps individuals to get closer to that and that’s critical because the cops and the judicial system just move on to another case because they don’t have time. Victims live with this trauma forever so VSS is with them for as long as they need the services. VSS takes the time, more importantly, they really care."

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