This article was published on October 14th, 2021
As an international campaign designed to raise awareness against bullying of those within the LGBTQ+ community which leads to hundreds of assaults and suicides annually, Spirit Day call on people within and outside of the community to support those that live under the queer umbrella. Spirit Day will be celebrated on Thursday, October 21, 2021.
What Is Spirit Day?
LGBTQ+ youth disproportionately face harassment and bullying because of their identities, and Spirit Day was established to speak out against these atrocities within the community. On this day, a pledge is made by people around the world – from companies and global leaders, to celebrities, parents, and beyond – showing support in the biggest anti-bullying campaign recognized across the globe.
Statistics on Bullying within LGBTQ+ Community
According to statistics gathered across recent years, as many as 90% of LGBTQ+ youth have reported experiencing some form of bullying, with findings from the National Transgender Discrimination Survey revealing that kids which show any type of gender non-conformity more like to report high rates of physical assault, harassment, and sexual violence. Of this number that have experienced bullying, approximately 60% of them also report that their school staff took no action once an incident had occurred.
When Did Spirit Day Begin?
Now recognized as annual LGBTQ+ event, Spirit Day is observed on the third Thursday of October and was launched in 2010 by Brittany McMillan, a Canadian teenager who acted after a string of highly publicized incidents of gay students in 2010 that led to related suicides, including Tyler Clementi. Through promotion with the organization GLAAD, those in support of Spirit Day were a purple ribbon to honor LGBTQ+ victims of suicide during National Bullying Prevention Month. The title Spirit Day is through an association with the purple stripe that is part of the rainbow flag, which was designed by Gilbert Baker and symbolizes the human spirit.
Activities for Spirit Day
Wear a purple shirt or ribbon on Spirit Day to raise awareness and to show your support.
Since 2010 and year thereafter, there have been many events worldwide to recognize Spirit Day, many of which are open to the public, attracting large crowds throughout communities. For those that are interested in participating and showing their support for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender youth, the easiest way is to search for events happening near you through social media links here.
When you participate in Spirit Day 2021, you are showing the LGBTQ+ youth of today that they have someone standing by them as they live in their truth and continue a journey towards acceptance.
How will you show solidarity to youth this year for Spirit Day? Let HomoCulture know below in the comments section!