The organisers of today’s Wear it Purple Day are pleased to announce that over 750 schools, community groups, workplaces and universities are taking part in 2019 to show LGBTQI young people that they have the right to be proud of who they are in public, at work and in educational settings – reaching an estimated 600,000+ people.

This year’s theme is “Stand Up, Stand Out” which organisers say pays tribute to those who’ve paved the way for LGBTQI people and welcoming the positive impact of those who’ve been able to be out, proud and visible.

“We hear from young LGBTIQ+ people in our Wear it Purple youth action council (YAC) and broader youth networks that they face fear of being rejected or discriminated for simply being true to who they are,” Wear it Purple president Ross Wetherbee said, earlier today.

“Research shows us that 75% of LGBTIQ+ youth experience some form of discrimination. Without visible signs of inclusion explicitly showing rainbow youth that they are accepted, supported and included, young people find themselves adopting a path of hiding themselves to fit in, rather than standing out as their authentic self which can impact their long-term health and wellbeing.”

“Fitting in and assimilating to the dominant culture can be a major barrier to creating belonging in schools, workplaces and our society more broadly. We want young people to truly feel that they have the right to be proud of who they are and that’s why we are inviting the community to stand up, stand out and wear purple on Friday 30th August.”

Wear it Purple Day has been celebrated since it was founded in 2010 in response to a number of LGBTQI young people taking their lives after being bullied and harassed.

Wear it Purple is a volunteer-run event and relies on the support of organisations including Telstra, Commonwealth Bank, Volley, Ashurst and Pure Finance.

Many of those corporate supporters are holding events today.

Law firm Baker McKenzie are holding a trivia and silent auction night with Sydney drag queen Hannah Cond, while HSBC will be lighting up International Towers Sydney in the colour purple.

Volley brand manager John Szwede said his organisation was proud to support the event in 2019.

“There is nothing clever about bullying, it’s a sad insecure trait that causes immeasurable destructive pain to those targeted,” Szwede said.

“Wear it Purple is important to me as it celebrates inclusivity so that every person on this beautiful earth can feel safe being in their own skin.”

Ashurst partner Andrew Carter said Wear it Purple Day was an opportunity to “visibly show all LGBTI+ people we stand with them and their right to be proud of who they are.”

“Wear it Purple Day is celebrated across Ashurst’s international network and each year it grows in support, spreading this positive message of inclusivity and acceptance,”

Kylie Fuller, Head of Diversity & Inclusion at Telstra, said taking part in the event was valuable for employers who wanted to let people know they were welcoming and supportive workplaces.

“We want rainbow young people to know that there are inclusive workplaces that will welcome and value them, not only for their skills, but for their unique perspectives and ability to represent our LGBTIQ customers and community,” Fuller said.

For more information, go to www.wearitpurple.org

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