Jill Zarin, Joel Burns, Ryan Seacrest Join GLAAD to Support Spirit Day

Tomorrow, millions of advocates and allies will join together to show support for LGBT youth by wearing purple in memory of those young people who have lost their lives to anti-LGBT bullying. ‘Spirit Day’ is also drawing the attention of top media outlets and allied celebrities who have 'gone purple' on Facebook and Twitter. (To customize your Facebook and Twitter pictures, go here) Fort Worth City Councilman Joel Burns, who recently attracted national headlines after delivering a heartfelt message to LGBT youth during a city council meeting, will be wearing purple on the Ellen DeGeneres Show this week, while MSNBC news anchor Thomas Roberts, E! News’ anchors Ryan Seacrest and Giuliana Rancic, E! News Now anchors Amy Paffrath and Melana Scantlin, E! columnist Marc Malkin, fashion icon Jay Manuel and star of Bravo’s Real Housewives of New York City, Jill Zarin, have also agreed to ‘go purple’ and support Spirit Day. Thousands have joined GLAAD’s call to change their Facebook and Twitter profile pictures to Spirit Day purple, and the Spirit Day Facebook event page has over 1 million attendees. Several local and national organizations have also signed on to the campaign, including Equality California, Equality Illinois, Equality New Mexico, Equality Pennsylvania, Equality Texas, Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network (GLSEN), Gay Straight Alliance (GSA) Network, Georgia Equality, Human Rights Campaign (HRC), Indiana Equality, MassEquality, Michigan Equality, the National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR), the Trevor Project and Vermont Freedom to Marry. Earlier this month, GLAAD announced a new partnership with Facebook after supporters alerted us to several violent and hateful comments being posted to the Spirit Day event page. Facebook confirmed to GLAAD that the company would adopt new measures to respond more quickly to homophobic abuse on its site. For more information, please visit these events on Facebook: "R.I.P. ;; In memory of the recent suicides due to gay abuse, wear purple" and Spirit Day, A GLOBAL Day of remembering. LGBT youth in need of immediate help should contact The Trevor Project 's 24/7 Lifeline at 866-4-U-TREVOR (866-488-7386) or The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).