According to GLSEN's most recent National School Climate Survey, a staggering 70.1% of LGBTQ students report being verbally harassed, and 48.7% of LGBTQ students have experienced cyberbullying. If you find these stats to be distressing or downright disturbing, that’s all the more reason to speak out against LGBTQ bullying by participating in GLAAD’s Spirit Day on Oct. 17. This year marks the 10th anniversary of the campaign, and considering the many tweets about Spirit Day that have been posted in the week leading up to it, it’s clear that this anti-bullying message is gaining steam.
On Spirit Day, members of the LGBTQ community and allies alike are encouraged to wear purple — the color that symobolizes spirit on the rainbow LGBTQ pride flag — to show their solidarity and support. But there are many other ways to get involved as well. You can take the pledge to show you stand with LGBTQ youth on GLAAD's website, as well as download GLAAD’s educational resources (like the anti-bullying resource kit for students) and then share your knowledge by engaging friends, classmates, coworkers, local media, etc. You can also make a donation to GLAAD in any amount of your choosing. And last, but certainly not least, you can spread the word via social media. It takes less than a minute to fire off a tweet or Instagram post sharing your participation in Spirit Day, and GLAAD even has some templates on the website to get you started if you're at a loss for words.
So, wondering what others have to say about the campaign? Here are a handful of tweeters who went purple on Oct. 17 — and are inspiring others to do the same.