Carmen is a Queer Black Womyn from Pittsburgh #AMPLIFY

Read the entire AMPLIFY LGBTQ Q&A archive.

AMPLIFY LGBTQ is a new occasional series of blog posts designed to give a “signal boost” to the voices of our LGBTQ neighbors throughout Western Pennsylvania. We are using a Q&A format and will mostly avoid editing their responses. The questions, however, may change as we ask each participant to tell us what we’ve missed asking. It is one of the vibrant elements of a blog format – evolution & growth. Western Pennsylvania

Our intent is to highlight the voices of marginalized members of our community who are not always invited to the table or whose voices are not heard (because “we” are not listening?) Obviously, my choice of questions does shape the conversation, but beyond that – these are glimpses in to the lived experiences of LGBTQ people in Western Pennsylvania as told in their own voices. If you would like to participate, please email me pghlesbian at gmail or visit the online Q&A.

You can read the other Q&A responses here.  AMPLIFY! LGBTQ is a project of Most Wanted Fine Art and Pittsburgh Lesbian Correspondents.

Western Pennsylvania
Carmen opted not to use a photo.

Name: Carmen

Age: 46

County of Residence: Allegheny

Tell me about the first LGBTQ person whom you met. What impact did they have on your life? I don’t recall the first gay person I met.

How do you describe your identity? I’m a Queer Black Womyn

How do you stay informed about LGBTQ issues? News, Community, facebook and twitter

Past or present, favorite LGBTQ character in television, film or literature? Ellen DeGeneres, Tweety Bird

How would you describe yourself in terms of “being out”? I’m completely out.

Tell me about your local or regional LGBTQ community. Pittsburgh has a good community but its divided racially and economically.

Have you ever experienced discrimination based on your identity in a job setting? How about in terms of being served by a business? Please explain. Yes, I worked for UPMC and my boss always made homophobic remarks

Describe your community in terms of being LGBTQ friendly (or not.) Semi-friendly

Are there issues impacting your LGBTQ neighbors that aren’t visible or part of the local dialogue? Discrimination and church hurt

What would you like to see elected officials do to improve life for LGBTQ Pennsylvanians? Enforce non-discrimination and LGBTQ Youth homelessness

Please share any anecdotes about life as a LGBTQ person in your community that might help outsiders better understand. I know people who have been kicked out of churches. Transwomyn being jobless and homeless

Beyond discrimination, what other barriers create challenges for your LGBTQ neighbors? Bullying and shelter

What LGBTQ friendly resources are available for your neighbors? None.

What is your greatest fear for the LGBTQ community in Western Pennsylvania? suicide going up in the queer community

What is your greatest hope for the LGBTQ community in Western Pennsylvania? To be treated normal

What motivated you to take part in this project? I’m a community organizer and native of Pittsburgh I care about my community and city.

Finally, what question should I have asked? Please also share your answer more culturally specific questions

Thank you, Carmen.

If you would like to participate in a future Q&A, please visit our survey or contact us pghlesbian at gmail dot com.

Pittsburgh Lesbian



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