To urge more people to attend its first-ever Family Acceptance Regional Conference, the Utah Pride Center has slashed its registration fee to $25 for individual tickets (with arrangements being made for individuals who have already registered at full price).
In a statement released earlier this week, the Center said that it was lowering the fee for this weekend’s conference because the community at large needs the information on how to help gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender youth and their families. It cited anti-gay remarks made by LDS leader Boyd K. Packer and a spate of suicides by young gay men as some of the reasons for its decision.
“The research, information, and tools from our national and local presenters regarding creating safer environments for LGBTQ youth is simply too important for cost to be a barrier to attendance,” said Jude McNeil, the Center’s Youth Program Coordinator.
The conference will be held Oct. 8–10 at the Sheraton Salt Lake City Hotel, 150 W. 500 South. It will feature a number of workshops and presentations targeted at queer youth, their families and professionals who work with them, on subjects including: homeless youth awareness and empowerment, supporting gender-variant children, creating safe schools, and preventing queer youth suicide. Presenters will include several local members of the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community and their allies, as well as speakers from such nationally-renown groups as the Trevor Project, the Massachusetts Commission on GLBT Youth and the Family Acceptance Project.
The conference will also host a suicide prevention workshop presented by the Trevor Project, Oct. 8 from 1–5 p.m. Called The Trevor Project Lifeguard Workshop Program, this four hour session will address the impact homophobia and transphobia has on gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and queer youth, and teach participants how to recognize warning signs of depression and suicidal behavior.
For more information about the conference, the Lifeguard Workshop Program and to register for either, visit utahpridecenter.org. Those who wish to support the conference without attending can make donations to the Utah Pride Center at this link.