The GLAAD Media Institute wraps up an LGBTQ advocacy training tour in Australia

The GLAAD Media Institute recently finished its 2022 training tour of Australia! The Equality Project, a national charity dedicated to affirming and supporting LGBTQ Australians, worked with GLAAD’s Media Institute Vice President, Ross Murray, to lead a tour across cities Sydney, Adelaide, Melbourne, Brisbane, and Wangaratta. Offerings included a multi-day masterclass for Australians interested in learning more about LGBTQ advocacy, as well as supporting employee leaders looking to make their organizations more LGBTQ-welcoming and inclusive. This advocacy masterclass collaboration was reintroduced after a three year hold due to the pandemic.

Blue GLAAD logo on TV behind Ross Murray. standing, wearing a grey suit. Participants sitting with backs to the camera.

This training tour is the fifth and longest tour GLAAD has done alongside The Equality Project in Australia. The Advocacy Masterclass teaches participants how to become media advocates for the LGBTQ community. This starts with participants learning how to share their own stories, while learning how to reach their target audience with stories and messages that resonate and engage the media with the issues impacting the LGBTQ community today. Suicide prevention, healthcare, elders, and transgender representation were key topics discussed by participants in the training, among several others. These topics are important to speak on because inauthentic representation and lack of access to healthcare can lead to detrimental results for the LGBTQ community. 

Since the COVID-19 pandemic, mental health and wellness have become even more important for queer and transgender people, who tend to experience more psychological distress. This year, as it has in years past, the masterclass allowed participants to delve into truly relevant topics and come away with a stronger understanding of the subject matter.

Ross Murray also met with The Australian Film Television and Radio School, (AFTRS) a school dedicated to the education and training of students’ creative talents in both screen arts and broadcast industries. Murray spoke with faculty about teaching students the impact of LGBTQ inclusivity in media representation, for the workplace and in the classroom. Over the years, he has also presented to students about LGBTQ representation in the media and GLAAD's work, including giving a high level introduction to GLAAD's film and television entertainment reports.

Ross Murray also supported work in an Equality Project training called “Building a Rainbow Positive Organization.” It is a tailored program for individuals or staff wanting to acquire a better understanding of LGBTQ health and inclusive practices. Participants are taught about minority stress, visibility and cultural safety, and insights into the latest research on the health and well-being of LGBTQ communities. A goal of this training is to help organizations learn how to become Rainbow Tick accredited, an accreditation process proving that their organization is officially welcoming and supportive to LGBTQ employees.

Since its partnership with GLAAD Media Institute, The Equality Project has trained over three thousand individuals, whether they are dedicated activists or everyday people intending to create positive change in their world. Learn more and register for one of their upcoming courses in the United States!