8 Ways to Support the LGBTQIA+ Community and Make a Difference
1. Educate Yourself About Gayness
We are often taught that sexuality is binary. You are either heterosexual or homosexual, you are either male or female, and you can only be one of two genders. However, the world is not that simple. Many people identify with aspects of both genders, people may have romantic feelings for more than one gender, or they may have no romantic feelings for any gender at all; there are even some who don’t identify with any gender.
Sexual orientation does not always line up with what we might consider to be “gender identity” and this can lead to confusion and difficulty in a society that does not acknowledge these differences. The first step in understanding gayness is to educate yourself about it - what it involves and what it means for those who identify as gay.
2. Take Action to End Homophobia & Transphobia in Your Own Neighborhood
A study by UCLA’s Williams Institute found that more than one in three lesbian, gay or bisexual students reported being physically assaulted at school for their sexual orientation and one in four transgender or gender non-conforming students reported being physically assaulted at school for their gender expression.
While there are people who think that no action should be taken on the issue of homophobia and transphobia, it is essential to take action because it is detrimental to society as a whole. The people that are impacted by these issues are more likely to self-harm, commit suicide, suffer from depression, miss school, or not succeed academically because of the bullying they experience.
3. Explore the Largest LGBTQIA+ Community Online and Offline
With the rise of the internet, a lot of LGBTQIA+ communities have formed. These communities are a place for people to find friends and support when they are feeling lonely or outcast. It is also a place where people can find information and resources to help them understand themselves better.
The internet has been huge in helping LGBTQIA+= individuals connect with other members of their community all around the world, but there is also a strong presence offline. There are many physical spaces like Pride Parade held just for LGBTQIA+ members and allies who want to celebrate diversity and equality in society.
4. Support Lesbian & Gay Artists in the Entertainment Industry
Creating a safe space for the LGBTQIA+ community in the entertainment industry is important to provide them with the opportunity to express themselves freely.
We can all help create more inclusive and diverse workplaces by learning to become an ally. It’s a conscious and active process of ensuring that there’s equal opportunity in the workplace. Allies create safe spaces for marginalized groups, they push for diversity and work with organizations to make sure that their communities are being included.
The internet has been an amazing tool that's connecting communities across borders. Younger generations are increasingly more connected to their sexual identity, which is why it's crucial that we keep creating spaces for them on social media platforms like Instagram, Twitter or Facebook.
5. Support Gender Non-Conforming People by Fighting for Their Rights and Visibility
Gender non-conforming people are often discriminated against or attacked for rejecting the gender norms and expectations of the society. While gender fluidity is a relatively new concept, its acceptance in the society has been growing tremendously over the years.
Gender non-conforming people are those who do not identify with either of the two genders that are considered as traditional genders by most societies. These people often experience a lot of discrimination and violence because they reject what is expected from them in their society. They also experience identity issues because they identify themselves as neither male nor female. The concept of gender fluidity has made it easier for these people to experiment with their gender expression without being judged.
In order to make sure that these people have rights, we should fight
6. Wear, Read, Listen to or Watch Art Made by Other LGBTQIA+ Artists/Creators
My recommendation for this section is the new web series "Eggplant Emoji." It's a serialized mystery that follows a group of LGBTQIA+ artists as they solve another queer artist's murder. The best part about this show is that it's written by all LGBTQIA+ people and directed by a bisexual woman. What I love about this show is that it has created a space for queer creators to tell their stories to an audience who identifies with them.
The lack of representation has been an issue on TV for years, and now there are finally shows like "Eggplant Emoji" or "Queer Eye" where the audience can be immersed in the story from someone who understands what it means to experience life as queer.
7. Be an Ally and Work for Equality in Your Area of Expertise
What does it mean to be an ally? An ally is someone who supports people and communities that are marginalized. Allies work to create a more inclusive environment for all. Allyship can take many forms: as a teacher, as a coach, as a colleague, or just as a friend.
8. Reach Out to People One-on-One to Offer Kindness or Comfort
It is important to offer solace to those in need when we can.
If you are feeling upset, sad, or lonely, there are many people who would be willing to listen and help. Reach out to a family member, close friend, or someone you know is good at listening.