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GLAAD KICKS OFF #SPIRITDAY WITH “BEYOND” CONCERT FEATURING ACCLAIMED SONGWRITER & ACTIVIST JUSTIN TRANTER AND SURPRISE PERFORMANCE BY BILLY PORTER
- Last updated: May 24, 2023
NFL AND GLAAD LAUNCH #SPIRITDAY PSA FEATURING OUT TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS LINEBACKER CARL NASSIB IN SUPPORT OF LGBTQ YOUTH
NEW YORK’S ICONIC EMPIRE STATE BUILDING GOES PURPLE FOR #SPIRITDAY WITH SINGER AND SONGWRITER JUJUBEE, GOTHAM CHEER, AND SALLY HANSEN
GLAAD RESPONDS TO INTRODUCTION OF HATE-FUELED FEDERAL ‘DON’T SAY LGBTQ’ BILL BY LOUISIANA REP. MIKE JOHNSON, CALIFORNIA REP. DOUG LAMALFA, AND 30 MEMBERS OF THE U.S. HOUSE
KELLY CLARKSON, HOSTS OF “TODAY,” CNBC, “DESPIERTA AMERICA,” NFL NETWORK’S “GOOD MORNING FOOTBALL,” TALENT INCLUDING: ALY & AJ, JONATHAN BENNETT, MAYIM BIALIK, STERLING K. BROWN, KRISTIN CAVALLARI, MARGARET CHO, JASON COLLINS, WILSON CRUZ, KEN JEONG, CARSON KRESSLEY, MATTY MAGGIACOMO, IDINA MENZEL, MAREN MORRIS, JIM PARSONS, DJ “SHANGELA” PIERCE, ADAM RIPPON, JAI RODRIGUEZ, JAKE WESLEY ROGERS, AMY SCHNEIDER, WANDA SYKES, THE CASTS OF “THE L WORD: GENERATION Q,” “RUPAUL’S DRAG RACE,” “WE’RE HERE,” FREEFORM’S “GOOD TROUBLE,” “THE COME UP,” “THE REAL HOUSEWIVES OF BEVERLY HILLS” AND “SINGLE DRUNK FEMALE,” SHOW SUPPORT FOR LGBTQ YOUTH
THE UNITED NATIONS, AMERICAN FEDERATION OF TEACHERS, AMERICAN LIBRARY ASSOCIATION, GSA NETWORKS, GLSEN, AND THE TREVOR PROJECT TO BRING #SPIRITDAY TO SCHOOLS AND ADVOCATES AROUND THE GLOBE
New York, NY, October 20, 2022 – Today, GLAAD, the world’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) media advocacy organization, announced participants wearing purple or going purple online today for Spirit Day in a united stand against bullying and show of support for LGBTQ youth. Since the inaugural Spirit Day in 2010, GLAAD organizes hundreds of celebrities, media outlets, brands, landmarks, sports leagues, faith groups, school districts, organizations, colleges and universities in what has become the most visible anti-LGBTQ bullying campaign and united show of support for LGBTQ youth. Purple symbolizes spirit on the rainbow flag. For more information visit glaad.org/spiritday and follow #SpiritDay.
Last night, in Los Angeles, GLAAD kicked off Spirit Day with the fourth “Beyond” Spirit Day Benefit Concert. Hosted by acclaimed songwriter & activist Justin Tranter, the evening featured a surprise performance by Billy Porter. The event was supported by the Kellogg Company, M&M’s, WWE as well as long-time GLAAD supporter Ketel One Family-Made Vodka. Special guests in attendance included Shea Diamond, Jake Wesley Rogers, Dan Reynolds, Chappell Roan and many more. Photos available here courtesy of GLAAD/Getty Images.
Singer and songwriter Jujubee joined Sally Hansen, Gotham Cheer, and GLAAD to light the iconic Empire State Building purple and kick off Spirit Day yesterday. Photos available here.
NFL Media produced a PSA with GLAAD emphasizing the importance of taking a stand against bullying and discrimination against LGBTQ youth. The spot features NFL Network talent Kimmi Chex, James Palmer and MJ Acosta Ruiz as well as Tampa Bay Buccaneers linebacker Carl Nassib who was the first active NFL player to come out publicly and Arizona Cardinals tight end Trey McBride, who is the first NFL player with same-sex parents. It also features members of the Carolina Panthers Top Cats Cheerleaders, including Javontre Booker, Ebonee Bryant-Smith, Chris Crawford and Justine Lindsey – who became the NFL’s first openly transgender cheerleader this year. All featured in the PSA echo the importance of being allies, standing up for LGBTQ youth across the country and wearing purple as part of the Spirit Day pledge. Video here.
Select #SpiritDay participation posts live as of this morning:
- NBC News Now
- Kelly Clarkson singing #SpiritDay Kellyoke
- Empire State Building
- The United Nations
- Toronto Blue Jays, New York Mets, Cleveland Guardians, Washington Nationals, Baltimore Orioles, Boston Red Sox, Detroit Tigers, Cincinnati Reds, Pittsburgh Pirates
- The Kellogg Company
- Singer/songwriter, Jujubee
- New York State Education Department
- New York Attorney General Letitia James
- Actor, Jonathan Bennett
- +Life’s Karl J. Schmid
Aly & AJ, Ben Aldridge, Louis Van Amstel, Jonathan Bennett, Mayim Bialik, Sue Bird, Kent Boyd, Aria Brooks, Sterling K. Brown, Kristin Cavallari, Margaret Cho, CNBC, Kerri Colby, Jason Collins, Wilson Cruz, Shannon Dang, Kelsi Davies, Heather Dubrow, Daniel Durant, Mikalah Gordon, Belinda Gosbee, Mollee Gray, Faithe Herman, David Hernandez, Ty Herndon, June Jambalaya, Jeka, Jane, Ken Jeong, Carson Kressley, Cheryl Ladd, Lady Camden Lisa Linke, Don Manicini, Mayan Lopez, Alexis Lynn, Baker Machado, Matty Maggiacomo, Idina Menzel, Mothé, Maddy Morphosis, Maren Morris, Chris Mosier, Netta, Joy Oladokun, Jim Parsons, DJ “Shangela” Pierce, Olivia Ponton, Kyla Pratt, Adam Rippon, Jai Rodriguez, Jake Wesley Rogers, Lily Rose, Amy Schneider, Deja Skye, Orion Story, Wanda Sykes, Brooklynne Webb Gregory Zarian, alongside faith leaders Guthrie Graves-Fitzsimmons, Brandan Robertson, Father James Martin, and Bishops Megan Rohrer, Brenda Bos, among others, will also participate in the world’s largest and most visible LGBTQ anti-bullying campaign. The casts of The Cleaning Lady, The L Word: Generation Q, Rupaul’s Drag Race, Freeform’s Good Trouble, The Come Up, The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills and Single Drunk Female, HBO’s We’re Here join
This year, presenting sponsors Kellogg Company, Sally Hansen, Target, and Visible, along with community sponsors Amazon Corporate Security, Kirkland & Ellis, L’Oreal/ Viktor&Rolf, NFL, NBA and WNBA, Skittles, and Taimi will all participate in the anti-bullying campaign.
Hosts of CNBC, “TODAY,” the 3rd Hour of “TODAY” and “TODAY” with Hoda & Jenna, Univision’s “Despierta America,” “The Kelly Clarkson Show,” “Wake Up with Cheddar,” and Cheddar News’ “Trending” participated by wearing purple and speaking about Spirit Day on-air.
GLAAD also today responded to the introduction of a federal ‘Don’t Say LGBTQ’ bill by Louisiana Rep. Mike Johnson, California Rep. Doug LaMalfa, and over 30 members of the U.S. House of Representatives. The legislation could affect federally funded facilities and programs including libraries, hospitals, and federally funded schools. It would prohibit materials or discussion involving “any topic involving gender identity, gender dysphoria, transgenderism, sexual orientation, or related subjects.” According to NBC News, this would include providing sex education or library books that include LGBTQ topics to children. It would also bar public libraries from using funds to host Drag Story Hour events.
GLAAD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis responded to the legislation on Twitter today.
“Don’t Say LGBTQ bills, as well as bills that harm transgender young people, are growing in number and creating a more dangerous and discriminatory America. At a time when anti-LGBTQ rhetoric, violence and legislation continue to rise at alarming rates, LGBTQ young people need to hear a loud message of affirmation on Spirit Day and all year long,” said GLAAD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis. “We hope LGBTQ young people see Spirit Day participation from so many notable individuals, organizations, sports leagues, elected officials, faith leaders, and brands today and recognize they are loved and supported just as they are.”
Several studios, networks, shows, streaming services, landmarks, sports leagues, and organizations are confirmed to take part in the world’s largest and most visible LGBTQ anti-bullying campaign:
- Organizations including the United Nations, American Library Association, American Federation of Teachers (AFL-CIO,) United Against Book Bans, and Big Brothers Big Sisters of NYC will also participate.
- Major sports leagues including the NFL, a community sponsor of Spirit Day this year, will take part in the anti-bullying campaign alongside the NBA, WNBA, MLB, NHL and Athlete Ally.
- Other landmarks joining the Empire State Building include the Spheres at Amazon’s Seattle campus, Amazon’s HQ2 in Arlington, The Stonewall National Monument Visitor’s Center, Screens in Times Square including Paramount, NASDAQ, the M&M’s store, and American Eagle billboards are set to go purple for Spirit Day, along with Mars buildings in Newark, New Jersey and Chicago’s Mars Wrigley Building.
- NBCUniversal News Group: CNBC’s logo will also go purple on-air and online in honor of the anti-bullying campaign. NBC News, MSNBC, CNBC, and NBC News NOW — will be going purple on Spirit Day. Shows across Peacock, Comcast NBCUniversal and Universal Studio Group will also participate alongside NBC News’ TODAY, the 3rd Hour of TODAY and TODAY with Hoda & Jenna.
- The Walt Disney Company: ABC, ABC Owned Television Stations, Disney Channel, Disney Television Studios, Hulu, National Geographic, and Onyx Collective will join cast members from Freeform’s Good Trouble, Single Drunk Female and The Come Up to take part in Spirit Day. Programs and platforms across ABC News will feature segments raising awareness about LGBTQ youth and taking a stand against bullying.
- Paramount: Casts from HBO’s We’re Here, RuPaul’s Drag Race and shows across ViacomCBS will also participate.
- For a sixth consecutive year, iHeartMedia will participate in Spirit Day by airing PSAs across its radio stations nationwide.
- Spanish-language networks, shows, and streaming services set to participate in Spirit Day include The Q Agenda, Despierta América, Hoy Día, Telemundo, TelevisaUnivision, Pantaya.
- Filmmaker and LGBTQ advocate Daniella Carter hosted a Spirit Day-themed screening and reception for her new short film ‘I Love My Mother’ last night in New York City with The Phluid Project.
- On Broadway, Jujamcyn Theaters will participate in Spirit Day along with the companies of Hadestown, Moulin Rouge! The Musical, Into the Woods and 1776.
- LGBTQ advocacy groups GLSEN, The Trevor Project and +Life will take part in Spirit Day along with the GSA Network and GSA student groups across the country.
- Faith organizations such as the United Church of Christ, The Naming Project, More Light Presbyterians, Fortunate Families, Reconciling Ministries Network and Affirming Youth Ministries will take part in Spirit Day.
- International organizations including Chinamerica Radio, Okaeri (Japan), GagaOOLala (Taiwan), Mermaids (UK), Gendered Intelligence (UK) will go purple for Spirit Day.
GLAAD previously announced the kick off to Spirit Day 2022 with Maren Morris launching a new shirt where 100% of the proceeds will go to GLAAD’s work to support LGBTQ young people. The shirt reads “You Have A Seat at This Table.” Purchase Maren Morris’s Purple #SpiritDay Shirt HERE. Morris is also partnering with digital fundraising platform Fandiem and with Bandsintown on a special sweepstakes supporting GLAAD to give her fans a chance to be her guest in Nashville for the final show of her “Humble Quest” tour, including a flyaway for the winner and a guest, 2 VIP tickets, an exclusive virtual meet-up with the singer, and more specially chosen experiences. Fans can Donate To Win at fandiem.com/marenmorris
Previous Spirit Day participants include the Obama White House, President Joe Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, the Empire State Building, Oprah Winfrey, Sec. Hillary Clinton, Mariah Carey, Britney Spears, Kerry Washington, Halle Berry, Laverne Cox, Celine Dion, Shaquille O’Neal, Sam Smith, Jimmy Kimmel, Troye Sivan, Good Morning America, The TODAY Show, The View, The Talk, The Tonight Show, the NBA and WNBA, all Major League Baseball teams, NASCAR, WWE, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, the Las Vegas Strip, and many more.
To see GLAAD’s list of 2021 Spirit Day participants including celebrities, media, athletes, and landmarks, click here.
GLAAD organizes celebrities, media outlets, brands, landmarks, sports leagues, faith groups, school districts, organizations, colleges and universities in what has become the most visible anti-LGBTQ bullying campaign in the world. Purple symbolizes spirit on the rainbow flag.
The annual tradition was started in 2010 by GLAAD and then high school student Brittany McMillan, in memory of the LGBTQ youth who died by suicide. McMillan encouraged her friends to wear purple on a day in October — a day that came to be known as Spirit Day.
Today, LGBTQ youth, and especially trans and nonbinary youth, are experiencing a level of scrutiny in schools we have never seen, leading to an environment rife with stressors beyond the peer-to-peer bullying of the past. From book bans, to bans on trans youth in sports, to bathroom restrictions and teachers barred from using correct pronouns, the means by which a student can express themselves and see others like them are increasingly being challenged.
GLSEN’s National School Climate Survey, released earlier this week, reported nearly 82% of LGBTQ students feel unsafe in school. 76% experienced in-person verbal harassment (e.g., called names or threatened) and 31% were physically harassed. Earlier this year, The Trevor Project reported 85% of transgender and nonbinary youth say that recent debates around anti-trans bills have negatively impacted their mental health.
GLAAD’s 2022 Social Media Safety Index found severe harassment for LGBTQ users when compared to 2021. This anti-LGBTQ rhetoric then translates to real-life harm and has been cited as drivers of many of the over 300 anti-LGBTQ bills introduced in states around the country this year alone, many of which target LGBTQ young people.
Take the Spirit Day pledge to show LGBTQ youth you’ve got their backs at glaad.org/spiritday.
For more information on Spirit Day, visit glaad.org/spiritday and follow @GLAAD on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and TikTok to keep up to date with #SpiritDay news.
About GLAAD: GLAAD rewrites the script for LGBTQ acceptance. As a dynamic media force, GLAAD tackles tough issues to shape the narrative and provoke dialogue that leads to cultural change. GLAAD protects all that has been accomplished and creates a world where everyone can live the life they love. For more information, please visit www.glaad.org or connect with GLAAD on Facebook and Twitter.
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