About the Queer Detainee Empowerment Project (QDEP)

The Queer Detainee Empowerment Project assists folks coming out of immigration detention in securing structural, health/wellness, educational, legal, and emotional support and services. We work to organize around the structural barriers and state violence that LGBTQIA TS & GNC detainee/undocumented folks face related to their immigration status, race, sexuality, and gender expression/ identity.
We are committed to assisting folks in building lives outside of detention, to breaking down the barriers that prevent folks from building fulfilling and productive lives, and to keeping queer families intact by demanding an end to deportations/ detention/ policing. We believe in creating a narrative of thriving, not just surviving.

Our Mission

The Queer Detainee Empowerment Project (QDEP) is a post-release support, detention center visitation, direct service, and community organizing project that works with Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Queer, Two Spirit, Trans, Intersex, Gender Non- Conforming, and HIV+ (LGBTQIA* GNC TS) immigrant prisoners and their families currently in detention centers, those that have been recently released from detention centers, and those at risk at entering immigration detention in the Tri-State Area (Connecticut, New Jersey, New York). 

Our Vision

QDEP works to create a world where Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, queer, Two Spirit, Trans, Gender Non- Conforming, Intersex and HIV+ detainees/undocumented/immigrant folks can pursue what their own vision and dreams of success is in their lives without fear of structural violence or violence due to their race, status, sexual orientation and or Gender Identity/Gender Expression.

QDEP is a proud member of the Detention Watch Network, CIVIC, as well as the International Detention Coalition,. And is a member of the Hate- Free Zones Campaign & National Prison Divestment Campaign Steering Committee. We work to build a trans and queer narrative and to queer the dialogue in the immigration justice and prison abolition movement.

QDEP is a fiscally sponsored project of the Center for Transformative Action (CTA). CTA, an educational 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, is legally and financially responsible for all our project activities.