MESSAGES OF SUPPORT FOR LGBTQ YOUTH ECHO AROUND THE WORLD ON THE 10TH ANNIVERSARY OF GLAAD’S SPIRIT DAY

October 17, 2019

Mathew Lasky
Director of Communications, GLAAD
mlasky@glaad.org

MARIAH CAREY, BILLY PORTER, NICKI MINAJ, SENATORS ELIZABETH WARREN, BERNIE SANDERS, AND KAMALA HARRIS, JAMES CORDEN, STERLING K. BROWN, LILLY SINGH, BILLY RAY CYRUS, LAVERNE COX, KARAMO BROWN, WILLOW SMITH, KIM PETRAS, TEGAN AND SARA, REGINA KING, WILSON CRUZ, DAN LEVY AND MORE SHOW THEIR SUPPORT FOR LGBTQ YOUTH ON SOCIAL MEDIA

Entertainment Tonight, Access Hollywood, CNBC, MTV, VH1, CNN New Day, Good Morning America, the Today Show, The View, The Talk, Live With Kelly & Ryan, Red Table Talk, Elivs Duran and the Morning Show, The Kelly Clarkson Show, Watch What Happens Live, Strahan, Sara, and Keke, Buzzfeed AM 2 DM, The Price is Right, Logo, Despierta América, El Nuevo Dia hosts recognize Spirit Day on air.

Sports leagues including all 30 Major League Baseball teams, the NBA & WNBA, and the NFL also went purple. The New York Yankees invited GLAAD Campus Ambassadors to sit in the Judge’s Chambers in support of Spirit Day and spoke about Spirit Day during the game.

New York, NY - Thursday, October 17, 2019 - GLAAD, the world’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) media advocacy organization, celebrated Spirit Day, when participants around the world wear purple or go purple online in a united stand against bullying and show of support for LGBTQ young people. Since the inaugural Spirit Day in 2010, GLAAD organizes hundreds of celebrities, media outlets, brands, landmarks, sports leagues, tech leaders, influencers, faith groups, school districts, organizations, colleges and universities in what has become the most visible anti-LGBTQ bullying campaign. Purple symbolizes spirit on the rainbow flag.

For more on Spirit Day: http://www.glaad.org/spiritday, #SpiritDay. GLAAD has been sharing content from participants all day on GLAAD’s twitter.

For journalists, a list of live links to select social media posts from celebrities and other notables is available here.

In honor of Spirit Day, Democratic Presidential candidates Joe Biden, Cory Booker, Pete Buttigieg, Kamala Harris, Julian Castro, Bernie Sanders and Amy Klobuchar offered powerful words of advice to LGBTQ youth. Check out some of the videos below:

Joe Biden: https://youtu.be/9eTp9Vl3e2g

Cory Booker: https://youtu.be/nUGdLUQQn3c

Pete Buttigieg: https://youtu.be/zfwjALeLKPo

Kamala Harris: https://youtu.be/voW2Ygk-uJ0

Amy Klobuchar: https://youtu.be/vzw9Bch9tyk

Songwriter, activist and GLAAD Board Member Justin Tranter hosted the third annual ‘BEYOND,’ a Spirit Day concert benefiting GLAAD sponsored by the Ariadne Getty Foundation, CAA, and Ketel One Family-Made Vodka on Wednesday night in Los Angeles. Over 500 guests attended BEYOND, which raised more than $400k for GLAAD’s advocacy work, a record for the event. This year BEYOND showcased performances from Tranter, Bebe Rexha, Idina Menzel, as well as LGBTQ singer-songwriters Jesse Saint John and Jozzy. Guests included Troye Sivan, Shea Diamond, Monique Heart (RuPaul’s Drag Race), Emily Hampshire (Schitt’s Creek), August Getty, Frankie Grande, Parson James, Stephanie Rice, Karl Schmid, and Angel Bonilla. Photos from the event available here: https://assignments.gettyimages.com/v2/share/1fd2659d-af88-4d94-84f7-7c61ef92f1d0?page=1&order=desc.

Spirit Day presenting partners Pantene and Target, official partners Kellogg’s and the NBA & WNBA, as well as community partners Amazon, Johnson & Johnson, Kirkland & Ellis, and Wells Fargo all participated in the anti-bullying campaign today.

Links to social media posts available here.

#SpiritDay was trending on Twitter all throughout the day on Thursday, and was featured in a Twitter Moment. #SpiritDay garnered over one billion impressions on social media and over 100 unique press articles about LGBTQ youth and bullying.

A non-comprehensive list of #SpiritDay participants follows:

Democratic Presidential Candidates: Bernie Sanders, Cory Booker, Elizabeth Warren, Joe Biden, Julian Castro and Kamala Harris.

Celebrities including: Nicki Minaj, Mariah Carey, Bebe Rexha, Billy Porter, Ellen DeGeneres, James Corden, Dan Levy, Jazz Jennings, Karamo Brown, Matt Czuchry, Sterling K. Brown, Thomas Roberts, Shangela, Wilson Cruz, Willow Smith, Yara Shahidi.

Additional celebrity participants included: Abisha, Anne-Marie, Jack Be, Molly Bernard, Tyler Blackburn, Dylan Brady, Wayne Brady, Raymond Braun, Leah Capelle, Margaret Cho, Andy Cohen, Billy Ray Cyrus, Taylor Dayne, Leon Else, Jackie Evancho, Richard Fowler, Daniel Frazese, Chelsea Frei, Billy Gilman, Tom Goss, Kat Graham, Mollee Gray, Harvey Guillen, Mickey Guyton, Carlie Hanson, Hannah Hart, Marcia Gay Harden, Tiffany Hendra, Ty Herndon, Jenna Johnson-Chmerkovskiy, Regina King, Alex Landi, Livvia, LeeAnne Locken, Lisa, Loeb, andra Lynn, Nicole Maines, Jenny March, Ross Matthews, Casey McQuillen, Bethany Meyers, Julia Michaels, Rita Moreno, Morgxn, Manny MUA, Olivia Newton-John, Trevor Noah, Olivia Ooms, Emily Osment, Our Lady J, Nicky Paris, Nicole Ari Parker, Dasha Polanco, Paul Reiser, Brody Ray, Stephanie Rice, Adam Rippon, Angelica Ross, Joshua Rush, Phoebe Ryan, Karl Schmid, Johnny Sibilly, Christian Siriano, Jeremy Sisto, Jaclyn Smith, Cub Sport, Brandon Stansell, Tegan & Sara, Bex Taylor-Klaus, Zeke Thomas, Tiffani Thiessen, Nico Tortorella, Justin Tranter, Girl Ultra, and Carlos Vera.

Cast members from: Schitt’s Creek, Mad About You, One Day at a Time, Shameless, The L Word: Generation Q, Work in Progress, Black Monday, God Friended Me, The Neighborhood, Broke, Carole’s Second Act, Evil, Dead To Me, Diary of a Female President, Madam Secretary, Hawaii Five-0, Magnum P.I., Tommy, Mom, Bob Hearts Abishola, Young Sheldon, FBI, FBI: Most Wanted, SEAL Team, S.W.A.T., Bull, MacGyver, The Unicorn, Florida Girls, All Rise, The Bold and the Beautiful, Let’s Make a Deal, Innovation Nation with Mo Rocca, and Lucky Dog with Brandon McMillan, LOVE & MARRIAGE: HUNTSVILLE.

Networks and platforms including: CBS, Disney|ABC Television, FOX, Freeform, HBO, Hulu, iHeart Media, NBC, Pop TV, Showtime, The CW, Viacom, WarnerMedia participated on social media or through talent. WarnerMedia is turning the entire Vessel structure outside of their new headquarters in New York’s Hudson Yards purple for the occasion.

Media outlets including: NBC News, TODAY.com, Variety, the Hollywood Reporter, People, MTV News, AdWeek, Billboard, OUT, The Advocate, The Hill, New York Daily News, HuffPost, Seventeen, Bustle, Romper, Allure, Elite Daily, Washington Blade, Metro Weekly, NewNowNext, LGBTQ Nation, them., Go Magazine.

On-air hosts of: CNBC, Good Morning America, TODAY, CNN New Day, Despierta America, EXTRA, Entertainment Tonight, Access Live, The Late Late Show with James Corden, Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen, A Little Late with Lilly Singh, The Daily Show with Trevor Noah, The Dr. Oz Show, The Kelly Clarkson Show, The View, Strahan, Sara and Keke, Buzzfeed AM 2 DM, Despierta América and Univision.

On-air logos on: CNBC, MTV, Logo, VH1, CBS Interactive, and the Batwoman signal.

Sports leagues including: NBA/WNBA, MLB, NFL, WWE. Athlete Ally, MLS all participated. At tonight's ALCS game, the New York Yankees invited GLAAD Campus Ambassadors to sit in the Judge’s Chambers in support of Spirit Day and spoke about Spirit Day during the game.

Landmarks: the Vessel at Hudson Yards in New York, AT&T’s Global HQ in downtown Dallas, The Spheres at Amazon’s headquarters in Seattle, the Viacom, Thomson Reuters, NASDAQ, and American Eagle billboards and screens in Times Square in New York City.

The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) and its UN Free & Equal campaign also partnered with GLAAD for Spirit Day. The UN Free & Equal campaign has created an emotive campaign video, titled “Purple the World,” calling for action against anti-LGBTIQ bullying. The video is available in 7 languages (Arabic, Chinese, French, English, Russian, Portuguese and Spanish). Watch the “Purple the World” video here. UN Free & Equal has also created a landing page for Spirit Day, where visitors can educate themselves about the human rights concerns facing LGBTIQ youth and find information about how allies, teachers, and governments can support LGBTIQ children who are being bullied. To access the unique Spirit Day landing page, visit https://www.unfe.org/spiritday/.

“With LGBTQ rights under attack on a near-daily basis, Spirit Day could not be happening at a more critical time,” said Sarah Kate Ellis, GLAAD President and CEO. “On Thursday, LGBTQ young people will be flooded with messages of support from their peers, teachers, favorite celebrities, athletes, and more notables all reminding them that they are not alone. What a powerful and refreshing change of pace from the divisive rhetoric and bullying that have become all too common today’s charged political and cultural climate.”

In the lead up to Spirit Day, GLAAD released videos of celebrities discussing bullying and calling for Spirit Day participation:

Angelica Ross: https://youtu.be/fs-V213aGRo

Jameela Jamil: https://youtu.be/rkKI2WduKnc

Adam Rippon: https://youtu.be/Oqp--teSrOA

Karamo Brown: https://youtu.be/R1oTt6lvD2c

Paula Abdul: https://youtu.be/VW32ekLOnJc

Patricia Arquette: https://youtu.be/A_sKrMmqa14

Dan Levy: https://youtu.be/BOqSWKLjXUw

Jaboukie Young-White: https://youtu.be/Ql39LR-KFDE

Peppermint: https://youtu.be/ILoE2Fbfyfg

Nina West: https://youtu.be/awTHn__sl88

Grammy-award winning artist and LGBTQ ally Kacey Musgraves helped to kick off Spirit Day by donating two VIP seats and a special backstage meet and greet to GLAAD to her sold-out show at Radio City Music Hall in NYC on October 15. Check out her photo with the contest winner here: https://www.instagram.com/p/B3sLa4sgAvl/.

Comcast Cable donated $2M in PSA airtime across their cable systems, reaching homes in 39 states. The PSA features GLAAD Campus Ambassadors and can be viewed here: https://twitter.com/glaad/status/1184631403159441408

GLAAD previously announced the release of a LGBTQ-inclusive children’s book titled, Spirit Day: A Book About Spreading Joy. In partnership with Little Bee Books, Spirit Day: A Book About Spreading Joy is the sixth book to be released in an ongoing series of LGBTQ-inclusive children’s books. Illustrated by Joy Yang, Spirit Day: A Book About Spreading Joy is a beautiful, bold board book that teaches children about Spirit Day and its mission to stop bullying. The title can be purchased on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and at various in-store locations.

Coinciding with National Bullying Prevention Month, Spirit Day began in 2010 when then high school student Brittany McMillan created a Tumblr post asking students to wear purple following the suicide deaths of several LGBTQ and LGBTQ-perceived young people.

According to GLSEN's most recent National School Climate Survey, 70.1% of LGBTQ students report being verbally harassed. Additionally, 59.5% of LGBTQ students feel unsafe at school because of their sexual orientation and 44.6% because of their gender expression. GLSEN also reported that 87.3% of LGBTQ students experienced harassment or assault based on personal characteristics, including sexual orientation, gender expression, gender, religion, actual or perceived race and ethnicity, and actual or perceived disability.

For more information on Spirit Day, visit http://glaad.org/spiritday.