Celebrating #SpiritDay

Did you know…?
49% of LGBTQ students report being cyber bullied 
55.5% of students feel unsafe at school because of their sexual orientation
38.7% because of their gender expression
Across the globe, millions of people go purple on Spirit Day, observed on the third Thursday of October, to stand against bullying and support LGBTQ youth. Purple signifies “spirit” on the gay pride flag. 
According to GLAAD’s website, folks “will celebrate Spirit Day on October 20, where we will all stand together - communities, corporations, celebrities, landmarks, faith groups, sports leagues, schools and so much more, to send a message of solidarity and acceptance to LGBT youth.”  Even if you're not part of an organization that is officially marking the occasion, you can use the hashtag #SpiritDay on social media to demonstate your support.  
Earlier this year the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a groundbreaking report indicating that lesbian, gay, and bisexual students experience substantially higher levels of physical and sexual violence and bullying than other students - placing them at significant risk of suicide, depression, addiction, poor academic performance, and other serious consequences.
At Mazzoni Center we understand that bullying is a public health issue, and we’ve been working for nearly 20 years with students and staff at schools throughout the city of Philadelphia to create safe and welcoming school environments for LGBTQ youth and ALL youth, through our Ally Safe Schools program.  
If you'd like to learn more about setting up a GSA at your school, drop me a line!  And if you've already got a GSA, we'd love to connect you with our Citywide GSA network: Click here to register your group with the Ally Safe Schools Program.

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