Dear IOP Community,
During the past month, we had the opportunity to celebrate Pride, an important time to reflect and observe the progress and achievements as well as the remaining work toward full equality for the LGBTQ+ community.
We also remember the struggle of LGBTQ+ people and revolutionary trailblazers. Last year, in-person celebrations and parades were cancelled as the pandemic constricted our ability to come together. Thankfully, as vaccinations permit more gatherings, Pride celebrations can reflect more of the parade traditions to stand up and walk together for us to exclaim, “We are here!”
We have highlighted community and national organizations dedicated to uplifting the LGBTQ+ community and ways you can get involved in supporting them. We hope this encourages you to participate in a way that you find meaningful and valuable in your own life.
This year marks the five year anniversary of the Pulse Nightclub tragedy, and the Orlando community still honors and celebrates the 49 shining stars we lost that night. That senseless killing highlights the need for Pride today, as young people learning about who they are and how they can be in the world is still a struggle for so many. At the same time, trans women of color continue to be the target of similar hate crimes across the country, and their unique struggle also deserves attention to combat the hatred they face on a daily basis. This year, we honor all those who have paved the way for the LGBTQ+ community in so many ways, especially those who had the courage to participate in the very first marches for rights, equity, and our very lives. We have come so far, yet there is still so much work to do.
We wish you all a Happy Pride Month and a great summer.
IOP Exec and Staff
- GLAAD rewrites the script for LGBTQ acceptance. As a dynamic media force founded in response to the media’s problematic coverage of the LGBTQ+ community, GLAAD tackles tough issues to shape the narrative and provoke dialogue that leads to cultural change.
- The onePULSE Foundation is a 501(c) 3 incorporated by the owner of Pulse nightclub. The Foundation was established to create a sanctuary of hope following the mass shooting. This fund is intended to support a memorial that opens hearts, a museum that opens minds, educational programs that open eyes and legacy scholarships that open doors.
- GLSEN works to ensure that LGBTQ students are able to learn and grow in a school environment free from bullying and harassment.
- PFLAG is the first and largest organization for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ+) people, their parents and families, and allies.
- The Trevor Project is the leading national organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer & questioning (LGBTQ) young people under 25.
- Lambda Legal is a national organization committed to achieving full recognition of the civil rights of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people and everyone living with HIV through impact litigation, education and public policy work.
- The It Gets Better Project is a nonprofit organization with a mission to uplift, empower, and connect lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer youth around the globe.
- The Victory Fund works to achieve equality for LGBTQ+ Americans by increasing the number of openly LGBTQ+ officials at all levels of government. Over the past 25 years, hundreds of candidates have received campaign, fundraising and communications support from the Victory Fund, and they have in turn represented the community and advocated for policy and legislation in favor of the LGBTQ+ community.
- The Sylvia Rivera Law Project works to guarantee that all people are free to self-determine gender identity and expression, regardless of income or race, and without facing harassment, discrimination or violence.
- The Okra Project is a collective that seeks to address the global crisis faced by Black Trans people by bringing home cooked, healthy, and culturally specific meals and resources to Black Trans People.
- By inspiring and engaging individuals and communities, the Human Rights Campaign strives to end discrimination against LGBTQ people and realize a world that achieves fundamental fairness and equality for all. HRC envisions a world where lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people are ensured equality and embraced as full members of society at home, at work and in every community.
- Since 2003, the National Black Justice Coalition (NBJC) has been America’s leading national civil rights organization dedicated to the empowerment of Black lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer+, and same gender loving (LGBTQ+/SGL) people, including people living with HIV/AIDS through coalition building, federal policy change, research, and education.
- ACT UP is a diverse, non-partisan group of individuals united in anger and committed to direct action to end the AIDS crisis.