Ally: Typically any non-LGBTQ+ person who supports and stands up for the rights of LGBTQ+ people.
We invite you – no matter how you identify – to think deeply about how you can be an ally to LGBT peers. Allyship is about more than supporting equal rights for marginalized groups; it’s about advocating for those groups, uplifting their voices, and reflecting constantly on the powerful intersections of identity, privilege and justice.
HOW TO TAKE ACTION:
Make a personal and intentional vow to explore what it means to become an ally to LGBTQ+ identified individuals.
Intervene when you hear anti-LGBTQ+ language or remarks – how often have you heard “that’s so gay?” as a derogatory term?
Use “I” statements: In conversations about LGBTQ+ issues and allyship, be conscious of your privilege and speak from your own experiences, rather than presuming the experiences of LGBTQ+ students and others.
Read essays and articles written by LGBTQ+ people about LGBTQ+ issues.
Educate yourself about the equality movements, and make sure you don’t erase the contributions of LGBTQ+ people in famous movements.
Ask your LGBTQ+ friends (respectfully, and only if they’re willing to answer!) about their experiences and how you can be an ally to them.
Similarly, practice having conversations about LGBTQ+ issues without demanding personal information from others.
Listen. Be the megaphone, not the speaker – use your privilege to amplify the voices of the people fighting for equality. People will often pay more attention to straight, cisgender people than to LGBTQ+ people. Make sure you help LGBTQ+ activists reach these different platforms, rather than taking the platform for yourself.
Never assume a person’s identity based on how they look, who they do or do not spend time with, or what others say about them. Only that person can tell you how they identify, and on their own time and terms.