Pier Kids the Life: Documentary about Queer Youth of Color

Film Screening & Discussion with Director

March 3, 2014

136 Thompson Hall
Teachers College, Columbia University

Pier Kids: The Life examines the legacy of Stonewall and the Gay Rights Movement it ignited by following the lives of DeSean, Krystal, and Casper, three gay and transgender youth of color who, after being pushed out of their home because of their sexuality, have become homeless on the same street the riots took place more than forty years ago.


Today, white upper-class families make the West Village their home; but as day turns to night, Christopher Street and its adjacent piers also become home to a transient yet vibrant street community known as the Pier Kids. This invisible network of queer and transgender youth of predominately Black and Latino descent represents nearly four thousand of New York City’s sixteen thousand registered homeless youth.

Left to wander and with few economic opportunities, the lives of these social refugees are beset with limited and harrowing options as money and food are everyday struggles. Through it all – or, perhaps, because of it all – hope still exists in the shadows of their neglect and abandonment.

Come see their story firsthand!

The SWG Project is screening parts of the pre-production, highly anticipated documentary, Pier Kids: The Life (http://pierkidsthelife.com/). Pier Kids: The Life has been featured in The Huffington Post (twice), Buzzfeed, OUT Magazine, Queerty, Slate and on GLAAD’s website. 

The director, Elegance Bratton, will be giving a talk on identity intersectionality, queer youth of color, and his experiences making the film. 

Monday, 3/3/3014 from 10am-11:40am

136 Thompson Hall
Teachers College, Columbia University
525 W 120th Street
New York, New York 10027-6696

Anyone is welcome to come, they will just have to check in with the the security booth in Zankel Hall (this is the main entrance to TC between Broadway and Amsterdam; the only entrance with a large stairwell and wheelchair ramp).

We hope that you can join us. Please see poster below for details and distribute (download here) to interested students and networks.