The state of emergency caused by the coronavirus has affected various sectors of the economy and different segments of society, including LGBT people. Especially those who worked for a daily wage were affected the most, they were deprived of their daily income and found themselves in a difficult situation.
These days, more than ever, violations of labor rights have hit hard people working in the service sector. Some of them did not have a contract with the employer, while others did not receive their paid time off or were sent on unpaid leave, and some even terminated the contract without taking into account the procedure established by law.
The state launched a one-time financial assistance program for some groups. Unfortunately, not everyone was able to use it. That is why Pink has been providing social support a month now to LGBT people, who have found themselves in a difficult social situation during the state of emergency. The main purpose of this support is to meet the basic needs of LGBT people in difficult life situations and to help them solve their vital social and financial problems.
The resources of the organization are limited, as Pink’s budget for administrative expenses is used for financial support. More than 3,5 million AMD has already been provided to people in need. In order to continue this assistance, we received help from the Urgent Action Fund and Open Society Foundations-Armenia, thanks to which we will continue to provide social support until the end of the state of emergency. The LGBT+ Shelter Initiative, which has continued to provide shelter to people who have been subjected to violence based on sexual orientation and gender identity during this period, also invests its resources in providing assistance.
Until now, Pink has received 56 applications for social support. According to the Social Support Guide developed by the organization and based on the needs assessment, the commission approved the request for full or partial support in the 40 applications and rejected the rest. 58% of the allocated money was intended for the provision of housing for the beneficiaries, 33% for food and other basic necessities, and 9% for the medical expenses of 12 of the applicants.
The majority of applicants are gay and bisexual men, who make up 62.5% of those who received support. Fewer lesbian and bisexual women have applied for the program, but they have all received social assistance. They make up 20% of applicants and trans people are 17.5%.
We continue to provide support to LGBT people in the emergency situation during these days, and in the end, we will present a final report.