Last weekend in the Long Island community of Bay Shore, vandals targeted the Long Island GLBT Services Network community center. These cowardly individuals slashed the tires and shattered the windows of the van used to transport teens to and from the Community Center. They also smashed the front door of the facility. The Suffolk County Police Commissioner has classified this criminal mischief as a hate crime.

A senseless act of hate against our neighbor is an act of hate against our city as well. The perpetrators of this intolerable act against LGBT youth must be brought to justice. United and unwavering, we will continue to send the message that hate crimes will not go unpunished. To the perpetrators, we say that our community will not be intimidated and will not be silenced.

Our thoughts are with the staff and community members who depend on the resources provided by the Long Island GLBT Network. The Suffolk County Police Department is asking anyone with information to contact the Hate Crimes Unit at 631-852-6323 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS.