Creating safe and inclusive learning environments for K-12 LGBTQIA+ Youth
October is LGBTQIA+ History Month, which observes the history of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, asexual and agender communities. It also explores the civil rights movements that support these communities, as well as the importance in progressing their causes. To commemorate this month’s significance, we’re highlighting GLSEN’s life-changing work and the impact of our partnership with them.
What began as an alliance between a teacher and student in search of belonging and grown into a national movement led by GLSEN—a national non-profit we’re proud to support. Comprised of more than 1.5 million people, the organization is comprised of students, educators, education activists and families working together to create safer learning environments for K-12 LGBTQIA+ students. This requires a future-minded, multi-faceted approach and is accomplished through evidence-based initiatives pioneered by the organization’s diverse support base.
With 43 chapters across 30 states, GLSEN has the regional presence needed to conduct broad research that lends meaningful insight into the LGBTQIA+ youth population as a whole. This high-level perspective lays the foundation for every organizational initiative, including but not limited to informing comprehensive legislation and creating developmentally-appropriate resources for schools to leverage as they strive to create safer and more inclusive learning environments for their students.
At Quay, we may have a passion for fashion but our heart for people and desire to support the disenfranchised is our driving force. We believe in GLSEN’s good work, which is why we joined forces to further their pure-hearted efforts. One of the ways we supported their mission was by creating a Pride-themed collection of frames, each uniquely fabulous in its own way, and since launching our Pride collection in June 2022 with 100% of proceeds going back to GLSEN, we’ve contributed $100,000 to benefit LGBTQIA+ youth, thanks to the support of our amazing Quay community!
- 6% of LGBTQ+ students were harassed or assaulted at school
- 2 in 5 LGBTQ+ students of color were bullied or harassed because of their race or ethnicity
- 84% of transgender students felt unsafe at school because of their gender
- GLSEN research shows LGBTQ+ students with access to safe and supportive schools have less absences and higher GPAs, experience less bullying and harassment and feel an overall greater sense of belonging
We also created a Pride Committee to educate our team on how to be part of the solution individually and in their communities. This looks creating a safe space for people to bring and voice their authentic selves, as well as collaborate on ways to invest in supporting our local LGBTQIA+ youth community.
There are a variety of ways you can join the movement alongside us, and we encourage you to do so:
- Stay Informed: Educate yourself on issues LGBTQIA+ community faces and how to be a compassionate ally and friend
- Vote: Research local policies affecting the LGBTQIA+ community and cast your vote at the midterm elections this fall. To learn more, join GLSEN’s advocacy network here
- Give Back: Make a financial contribution, volunteer in your local community or donate LGBTQIA+-affirming K-12 books to your local schools: https://www.glsen.org/ways-to-give
- Learn more about GLSEN’s Rainbow Library initiative here
- Level-up your fashion game while creating a better future for K-12 LGTBQIA+ students by rounding up at checkout
It’s never too late to make a difference, but it takes all of us to do so. Here’s to creating a safer, more inclusive educational experience for K-12 LGBTQIA+ students.