The Center and Near West Theatre Host LGBTQ+ Youth Prom This Saturday

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click to enlarge The Center and Near West Theatre Host LGBTQ+ Youth Prom This Saturday
Courtesy of Near West Theatre

For the second year in a row The LGBT Community Center of Greater Cleveland (The Center) is presenting a LGBTQ+ Youth Prom to allow an inclusive experience for teens of all sexual orientations, gender identities and gender expressions (SOGIE).

The Center is joining forces with Near West Theatre, who will be housing the event for an enchanting evening of music, dancing and fun. The LGBTQ+ Youth Prom is an officially recognized event as part of Pride in the CLE.

Despite the first amendment protecting teens with diverse SOGIE from being discriminated against based on choice of prom date or attire in the public school system, these same laws do not protect those in private schools or who may not be comfortable and 'out' in their public school environments.

The LGBTQ+ community has made incredible strides in achieving acceptance, but a new study revealed that in the last two years, teens have experienced an unprecedented high in anti-LGBTQ+ bullying. As it stands, LGBTQ+ students are two to three times more likely than their peers to be physically assaulted or threatened at school.

Pride Proms are alternative events that allow a safe environment for teens with diverse SOGIE to experience a right of passage for most high school students without fear of ridicule or danger. Offering inclusivity and affirming support, Pride Proms can be beneficial in helping the development of positive identities for LGBTQ+ youth.

This year's theme is Happily Ever After: Write Your Own Happy Ending. Wear What Makes You Feel Magical.

The LGBTQ+ Prom is for youth ages 14-19 on May 26 from 6 p.m. - 10 p.m. Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 at the door. Near West Theatre is located at 6702 Detroit Avenue.

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