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Mother and son launch safety app for LGBTQ+ community in Brighton

Brighton residents Luciana and Nicholas Cousin have introduced the Back Off. Back Up. (BOBU) app, designed to enhance safety for LGBTQ+ individuals during nights out. The app, already operational in Brighton, functions as a tool to identify safe havens like bars and restaurants for those feeling unsafe, as reported by BBC.

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Recent data from the charity Stonewall reveals a concerning rise of 112% in hate crimes based on sexual orientation over the last five years. By highlighting establishments where staff are equipped to assist individuals in distress, the app offers practical support and security. Ms. Cousin disclosed that the inspiration behind the app stemmed from friends' experiences of attacks where seeking help felt daunting. 

The Cousin duo envisions expanding the BOBU app's reach into London and Kendal, Cumbria, before extending its coverage nationwide. As part of their growth strategy, the app is undergoing redevelopment with a scheduled re-release by the end of March, although its current version remains functional.

Nicholas Cousin remarked on his motivation for creating the app, reflecting on childhood experiences of being targeted and isolated. Recalling similar struggles, Luciana shared her desire for her son's LGBTQ+ journey to differ from her own yet lamented the recurrence of similar challenges. She emphasized authenticity over societal expectations, advocating for individuals to embrace their true selves despite external pressures. 

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