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Running for their lives, LGBTIQ+ immigrants come to the U.S., mostly to New York, where they settle down in neighborhoods, where people speak the same language and share mutual cultural attitudes (such as Brighton Beach in Brooklyn.) However, quite often those areas are not safe for LBGTIQ+ individuals due remaining homophobia, racism, misogyny etc. Ironically, seeking freedom in NYC, queer immigrants find the same mistreatment they had in their home countries, which has not been addressed by the local elected officials or government bodies. In many cases, LGBTIQ+ immigrants are afraid to report incidents involved a physical violence or verbal abuse to the police due the lack of trust and traumatic experiences they endured interacting with the police in their home countries.

On top of that, the current political climate nationwide is extremely hostile towards the immigrants. The White House agenda is clear; immigrants are not welcomed in the United States. Considering the multiple threats coming from the Government, Queer immigrants often feel frustrated, threatened, and abandoned, experiencing a double mistreatment, from the Government and their own compatriots.

Lyosha Gorshkov, PhD in Political Science, Co-President at RUSA LGBT, and founder the Brighton Beach Pride. He is a Visiting Professor at Indiana University, Bloomington (August-October 2019) and a former Political Science Professor at Perm State University in Russia. In July 2014, after being persecuted and physically threatened by Security Services, and Neo-Nazi groups for being openly gay professor, and vocal advocate for LGBTIQ rights, he was forced to leave Russia. Lyoha's sphere of academic expertise is gender and queer studies. He was granted asylum in the U.S. in March 2017.

In collaboration with Prospect Park Alliance, Brooklyn Public Library presents University Open Air, a free, three-week series of classes beginning Tuesday, June 11th in Prospect Park’s former Rose Garden.

To access the Rose Garden, follow signs through Prospect Park's Grand Army Plaza entrance. 

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