Millions to 'go purple' for Spirit Day on October 19

Spirit Day apps allow users to turn Facebook and Twitter profile photos purple; American Apparel launches Spirit Day store, donates 10% of all 'purple proceeds' to GLAAD

Seth Adam
Senior Manager of Communications, GLAAD
(646) 871-8018
adam@glaad.org

October 16, 2012

Hosts of Good Morning America, The Talk, Days of Our Lives cast, Facebook, the NBA, Dianna Agron, Chaz Bono, DJ Pauly D, Fran Drescher, Fun., Joel McHale, Sir Ian McKellan, Maria Menounos, Wendy Williams and more pledge to wear purple in stand against bullying

NEW YORK, NY, October 16, 2012 – Hosts of ‘Good Morning America,’ ‘The Talk,’ ‘E! News,’ ‘Chelsea Lately,’ Dianna Agron, Sir Ian McKellen, Fun., Bernadette Peters join Facebook, Times Square, the NBA, the New York Stock Exchange, and millions of Americans in ‘going purple’ for Spirit Day on October 19 in a stand against bullying and to show their support for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) youth, GLAAD announced today.

Participants will wear purple on Spirit Day or go purple online by turning their social media profile pictures purple using GLAAD’s Spirit Day apps available at http://glaad.org/spiritday

American Apparel, the vertically integrated clothing manufacturer based in downtown Los Angeles, launched a Spirit Day store featuring the company’s purple clothing items. Spirit Day supporters will receive a special 10% discount on the purple items by using the promo code ‘SPIRIT’ at check out. American Apparel will also donate 10% of all ‘purple proceeds’ to GLAAD.

Hosts of ‘Good Morning America’ will wear purple on the October 19 show. ‘Watch What Happens Live’ host Andy Cohen will also wear purple for Spirit Day on the October 18 program. ‘Glee’ star Dianna Agron and host of ‘Extra,’ Maria Menounos, will join previously announced celebrity participants including Perez Hilton, Avan Jogia, Shay Mitchell, Shaquille O’Neal, George Takei and Wendy Williams as a Spirit Day Ambassador to help secure widespread participation.

Each year, GLAAD coordinates hundreds of national and local organizations, schools, celebrities, media, sports leagues, corporations, parishes, faith groups and landmarks. GLAAD is also working with gay teen Katy Butler who is calling for President Obama and Governor Romney to wear purple on Friday. Her Change.org petition has garnered thousands of signatures: http://glaad.org/purple2012. Earlier this year, Katy launched a Change.org petition to call on the MPAA to change the rating of the documentary BULLY. 

“By going purple for Spirit Day, millions of Americans are helping to send a clear message that no one should be bullied simply because of who they are,” said GLAAD President Herndon Graddick.

Additionally, celebrities including Louis Van Amstel, Bryan Batt, Chaz Bono, Bailey Buntain, Keenan Cahill, Margaret Cho, the cast of Days of Our Lives, Fran Drescher, Fun., Stephen Fry, Cheyenne Jackson, Peter Marc Jacobson, Kaya Jones, Keahu Kahuaui, Jennifer Knapp, Kara Laricks, Judith Light, Mario Lopez, Marlee Matlin, Dean McDermott, Sir Ian McKellen, Joel McHale, Cesar Milan, D.W. Moffett, Sonja Morgan, Mary Murphy, Matt Nordgren, Melissa Peterman, Bernadette Peters, DJ Pauly D, Cierra Ramirez, SallyAnn Salsano, Lindsey Shaw, Gail Simmons, Freddie Smith, Lea Thompson, Stephen Wallem, Marissa Winokur and Bruce Vilanch will also participate by going purple on October 19.

Celebrity participants and Spirit Day Ambassadors are also encouraging fans and supporters to donate to GLAAD, GLSEN and The Trevor Project by texting ‘PURPLE’ to 80888 to make a $5 contribution. AT&T is the exclusive underwriter of the Spirit Day Text Purple campaign.

The Duke Energy Tower in Charlotte, NC will join the New York Stock Exchange, Thomson Reuters’ Times Square screen, the LAX Pylon Lights and JFK traffic tower in lighting up purple for Spirit Day on October 19.

GLAAD and Toyota Financial Services last week announced the release of the “Go Purple for #SpiritDay powered by Toyota Financial Services” apps for iPhone and Android. The app provides users with anti-bullying resources, calls to action, and a tool that can turn photos purple and share to Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. The free app is now available in the Apple App Store and on Google Play. To download, visit: http://GLAAD.org/spiritday/app

Other previously announced participants include LGBT advocates Jordan Addison, Shane Bitney Crone, Brittany McMillan, Tiq Milan, Janet Mock, Jennifer Tyrrell, and Zach Wahls who will join Hilton, Jogia, Mitchell, Menounos, O’Neal, Takei and Williams as Spirit Day Ambassadors.

The Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD), the nation’s second largest school district with more than 640,000 students in over 900 schools, will participate by sharing information about Spirit Day with students on its website and through its social media channels. The National Basketball Association (NBA) and Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) will also participate through social media.

Corporations including AMC Entertainment, American Airlines, American Apparel, AT&T, atelier-lb, Caesars Foundation, Carat, Citi, Comcast, CreagerCole Communications, Delta Air Lines, Draftfcb, Digitas, Ernst & Young, Facebook, Hewlett-Packard Company, Hyatt, Johnnye’s East Texas Soul, LBNY, Leo Burnett Business, The McGraw-Hill Companies, Marquee Las Vegas, MediaVest, MetLife, MSL New York, Mobli, NBCUniversal, Nielsen, Omnicom Group, PepsiCo, Publicis Groupe, Publicis Kaplan Thaler, PwC, Saatchi & Saatchi, Southern California Edison, StumbleUpon, Thomson Reuters, Toyota Financial Services, tumblr, Viacom, Warner Bros., Wells Fargo, Yahoo! and Zenith Optimedia will also participate in Spirit Day. Participating companies will distribute information to employees about wearing purple and/or turn their logo purple on October 19.

Local and national groups and organizations including All Out; American Federation of Teachers; Athlete Ally; Bienestar; the BULLY Project; Campus Pride; CenterLink; Circle of Voices; Courage Campaign; Empire State Pride Agenda; Equality Florida; Equality Illinois; Equality Maryland; Equality Matters; Equality Michigan; the Equality Network; Equality North Carolina; Equality Ohio; Equality Texas; Equality Utah; Fair Wisconsin; FALGBT; Familia es Familia; Forty to None Project; Forum for Equality; Freedom to Marry; FriendFactor; Forum for Equality; Garden State Equality; Georgia Equality; Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders (GLAD); the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network (GLSEN); Gay Men of African Descent (GMAD); Give a Damn Campaign; GMHC; GSA Network; Hetrick-Martin Institute; Hispanic Black Gay Coalition (HBGC); Human Rights Campaign (HRC); Immigration Equality; Indiana Equality; It Gets Better Project; Latino Equality Alliance; Latino GLBT History; LGBT Faith Leaders of African Descent; Log Cabin Republicans; the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC); Mass Equality; Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition (MTPC); MOVILH; National Black Justice Coalition (NBJC); the National Bullying Prevention Center by PACER; the National Council of La Raza (NCLR); National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR); National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE); the National Hispanic Media Coalition (NHMC); One Colorado; OutFront Minnesota; Out & Equal; OutServe; Parents, Family and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG); Point Foundation; promo; Reaching Out MBA; Sean’s Last Wish; SAGE; Service Members Legal Defense Network (SLDN); Straight But Not Narrow; The Task Force; Tennessee Equality Project; Transgender Law Center; Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund (TLDEF); Trans People of Color Coalition (TPCC);Tennessee Equality Project; Trans Ohio; Trans People of Color Coalition; Trans Youth Support Network (TYSN); The Trevor Project; True Colors Fund; The Village Family Services; We Are Family; WikiQueer; and Youth Empowered to Act (YETA) will all participate by wearing purple on October 19, turning their social media channels purple, and encouraging members to participate.

In 2010, teenager Brittany McMillan called on her friends to wear purple as a way to memorialize those who lost their lives to bullying. With GLAAD’s help, Spirit Day has since garnered widespread support from celebrities, TV news and entertainment programs, corporations, organizations, schools, local communities, and even national landmarks. Spirit Day coincides with GLSEN’s Ally Week, as well as National Bullying Prevention Month.

"Showing support for your friends, family and teachers can make all the difference in the world to young LGBT people, whether they are going through a tough time or not,” said 17-year-old McMillan. “This year, Spirit Day is going to be bigger and better than ever, and I’m so thrilled to be going purple alongside some of my favorite celebrities, as well as millions of others in a united stand against bullying.”

Among those who participated in 2011: hosts of the Today Show, Good Morning America, Live! With Regis & Kelly, The View, CBS Evening News, NBC Nightly News, and ABC World News; celebrities including Tyra Banks, Cher, Ellen DeGeneres, Ricky Martin, Julianne Moore, and Oprah Winfrey; corporations like AT&T, Goldman Sachs, Facebook, MTV, and NBCUniversal; and national landmarks including Times Square, LAX, and the White House.