Every year, millions of Americans wear purple on Spirit Day as a way to support and stand with LGBTQ+ youth.
Observed every year on the third Thursday of October, Spirit Day sheds light on the fact that LGBTQ+ youth disproportionately face bullying and harassment because of their identities, and it needs to end. Pledging to “go purple” on Spirit Day is a way for everyone to visibly show their support for and solidarity with LGBTQ+ youth. As a community, we stand united against bullying.
As a result of bullying and discrimination, LGBTQ+ youth are at higher risk of dropping out of school, suffering from depression, and contemplating suicide. As a community, we need to protect and stand up for each other. The first step is staying educated and aware. GLAAD highlights some important facts about bullying and harassment toward LGBTQ+ youth. These may be tough to hear, but they have to be talked about. According to surveys conducted by the Trevor Project and GLSEN in 2017, 2019, and 2020:
- 1 in 3 LGBTQ+ youth reported that they had been physically threatened or harmed in their lifetime due to their identity.
- Over half of transgender and non-binary youth have seriously considered suicide.
- 70.1% of LGBTQ+ students report being verbally harassed.
- 71% of LGBTQ+ students report hearing homophobic remarks from teachers and/or school staff because of their gender expression.
- 53.3% of LGBTQ+ students did not report experiences of bullying because they doubted an intervention.
- 48.7% of LGBTQ+ students have experienced cyberbullying.
- 29% of LGBTQ+ youth have experienced homelessness, been kicked out, or run away.
- 86% of LGBTQ+ youth said that recent politics have negatively impacted their well-being.
Pride Palace stands with the LGBTQ+ community, youth, and allies. We invite everyone to do the same. Here’s how you can show your support and solidarity on Spirit Day:
1) Go purple!
Something as simple as putting on a purple outfit will show others that you stand with LGBTQ+ youth. So why not do it? On Spirit Day, wear something purple to work or school, and share a selfie on social media. Change your profile picture to Spirit Day Purple. Wear purple makeup. However you choose to go purple, remember to educate those around you on why this matters.
2) Donate to an organization!
It is never a bad idea to donate to an LGBTQ+ organization. This can change someone’s life, no matter the size of the donation. Pride Palace donates to several organizations as a way to show support and promote acceptance of the LGBTQ+ community. If you are interested in finding out more, click here for a list of organizations!
3) Spread the word!
If you are unable to donate, you can always spread awareness! This is very important. Many people don’t know about these issues and/or have not been educated about this observance day. First observed in 2010, Spirit Day is still a relatively new awareness day and could use all the exposure possible. You can share informative videos and graphics on social media, tell your friends about Spirit Day, inspire others to wear purple, and more. Spread the word far and wide that you are an ally of LGBTQ+ youth, not just on Spirit Day but every day.
Final thoughts: Pride Palace believes that everyone deserves to feel loved, accepted, and valued, especially young children and teens. And yet, LGBTQ+ youth disproportionately face bullying and harassment because of their identities. This needs to end. Pride Palace stands with LGBTQ+ youth, and we invite everyone to do the same. Pride Palace community, make sure to visibility show your support for and solidarity with LGBTQ+ youth by going purple on Spirit Day and inspiring others to do the same!