What is a Safe Space?

A Safe Space can be anything and anywhere. A Safe Space is a place where LGBTQ people can be themselves, be supported, be respected, be valued, and receive appropriate information and resources. A Safe Space is a space where it is not acceptable to use biased language or to judge people. People who are LGBTQ feel safer and more comfortable knowing that there is a place where they can go for assistance if they need it.

Who should become a member of the Safe Space program?

Members of the Safe Space program have one common thread; a belief that LGBTQ people have the right to feel safe, supported and valued as a part of the Stony Brook University community. Faculty, staff and students are all welcome and encouraged to become Safe Space members. The more Safe Spaces there are around the University the more comfortable it will become for LGBTQ people to be educated at, live at, work at and visit Stony Brook University.

Why do you need training to become a member of the Safe Space program?

Most people who want to become members of the Safe Space program already believe that LGBTQ people deserve to be treated with respect and to feel safe at Stony Brook University. With just a little education on a few specifics, they can become some of the best allies of LGBTQ people here at the University. Many people are very supportive but just don’t know how to help. The Safe Space training will give you the tools to recognize biases that may not set off some automatic alarm in your head. The truth is that we are not sensitized to LGBTQ bias in the same respect we are to biases toward other minority groups. Many times bias against LGBTQ people just slips under the radar.

Recognizing the bias is only the first step. Knowing what to do about it is the next. The Safe Space Training will give you the knowledge to help end these biases as well as give you the information necessary to make a referral when the help that is needed is beyond what you are trained to deal with.

I’m already a Safe Space member, is there anything else I can do to become more involved?

There are always opportunities to become more involved in creating safer spaces at Stony Brook University. The next step after becoming a Safe Space Member would be to become a Safe Space Trainer. Individuals interested in becoming a Safe Space Trainer are required to complete a full-day Train the Trainer course as well as committing to presenting the Safe Space Training at least twice per academic year with a co-instructor.

If you are interested in becoming a Safe Space Trainer please contact Chris Tanaka at the Center for Prevention and Outreach by calling 631-632-9666 or emailing