Lutze Segu is a Miami girl of Haitian decent. She is a social justice educator working on the problem of queer youth homelessness. Lutze is a strong believer in the power of empathy in her battle against society’s bias around classism, racism, poverty, mental health, childhood trauma and other structural and systemic issues that push people into the margins of our society and render them invisible.
I am a hyphenated American who was born and raised in Miami. I am the product of Haitian immigrants who emigrated to Miami on raft aka “the boat people.” My parents made an intentional and risky decision to leave their beautiful Ayiti and come settle in the U.S. to ensure that I could reach my full potential. Miami is my home in every conceivable way.
WHAT IS THE MOST PRESSING ISSUE TO SOLVE ON YOUR LIST? WHY?
I am serious about wanting to help end homelessness in Miami, but more specifically queer youth homelessness. It is estimated that 40% of youth experiencing homelessness were kicked out for being lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, gender non-conforming, queer, or questioning. A young person should not have be without shelter for daring to be in their truth and express their authentic selves. I am also working to end race-based bias and dismantle racism and smash the patriarchy. I am a social justice educator and I create spaces and learning opportunities for adults and youth to name, claim, and scrutinize where they have privilege. It is my hope that through this education folks consider being radical allies to marginalized folks/communities. You cannot solve a big man made issue like homelessness until there is a collective and individual unpacking of our bias around classism, racism, poverty, mental health, childhood trauma and all the other structural and systemic issues that pushes people into the margins of our society and renders them invisible.
HOW CAN WE SOLVE IT?
I am of the belief that human beings have the capacity to solve any human condition by wrestling with their shame, being courageously vulnerable, owning their stories, and by practicing empathy. Healthy people create healthy communities. By giving folks the tools to heal themselves, I believe that it will fundamentally change how human beings see themselves, interact with each other, and change their worldview. You only need 3% of people to buy into an idea to exact major change in a society and 3% is an attainable number.