Just In Time For #SpiritDay, GLAAD's Video On LGBT Bullying Provides a Lot Of Food For Thought
Bullying of LGBT youth is a pervasive and on-going problem in schools across the country. And now GLAAD is putting a human face on that problem with a new video on LGBT bullying just in time for Spirit Day on October 16th. It's a needed reminder that, for all the progress causes like gay marriage have seen in recent years, the fight for LGBT equality and inclusion is far, far from over.
Although bullying in schools has declined overall in recent decades, bullying of LGBT youth still remains mind-bogglingly high. In a 2009 survey of 7,000 LGBT middle and high schoolers, for instance, eight out of 10 students said they had been verbally harassed at school in the past year. One in five had been the victim of physical assault over that same time period. Six out of 10 felt unsafe in school. Other studies have shown similar findings.
And, most disturbingly of all, often times school administrators either overlook incidents of LGBT bullying or are forced to remain "neutral" because of school district policies.
Looking to shine a light on this problem, GLAAD visited the Hetrick Martin Institute, a nonprofit serving the needs of LGBT youth in New York City, and spoke with some of the young people there, letting them talk about their own experiences with bullying. It's a powerful reminder of how much work still needs to be done, and of what's at stake.
To further show your support for LGBT youth, you can wear purple on Spirit Day, October 16th, and use the #spiritday hashtag on social media.