FOR me, Wear it Purple Day represents an opportunity to actively express my opinions and feelings about the issues facing the rainbow community.

As a leader of the Wear it Purple Youth Advisory Council, I assist in brainstorming and planning, which gives me significant creative and social output all year round. As a member of the rainbow community, my dream is to live in an accepting and diverse society where self-expression is encouraged, not suppressed.

Wear it Purple Day represents the potential to achieve equality. For one day, all participants — rainbow or otherwise — are encouraged to wear purple in order to show their support. The participation is overwhelming. Last year, hundreds of students at my high school, Fort Street High School, wore purple and participated in events. Looking out at the flood of purple from the assembly lectern was a massive encouragement and inspiration. This one day gives me confidence about the future and my own personal experiences down the road outside of school.

Equality is about safety and the holistic acceptance of the rainbow community. By participating in Wear it Purple Day, we not only demonstrate support, but also create a safe environment for all gender and sexuality-diverse young people. Every person I see wearing purple on August 29 this year is another ally, another person that I can trust that will not harass me because of who I am.

Wear it Purple has been growing at an exponential rate. This year so far, an overwhelming 61,000 people have registered to participate as part of the enlisted 79 schools, 18 workplaces, 11 tertiary institutions and 18 community organisations. The increasing support for Wear it Purple bears witness to the changing societal attitude that we’re seeing. Everything is changing for the better.

Participation in Wear it Purple Day is easy. Needless to say, you only have to wear purple. You are also encouraged to muster support from your workplace, school or tertiary institution. Come wearing your most unique purple clothing and show everyone “you have the right to be proud of who you are”. On the day, you can also go online and watch our new video that tackles stereotypes and preconceptions. Share your messages and images of support using the hashtags #wearitpurple and #dontboxme. You can also and like the Wear it Purple Facebook page.

Wear it Purple Day is only one day in the year, but I hope that the support and love of this day carries on throughout the other 364 days. By creating a supportive environment for one day, we learn how to continue this attitude in our daily lives. We are encouraged to rethink our use of language, our preconceptions based on identity, and most of all the way we treat other people.

I hope to see a tsunami of purple this month. Look forward to August 29, an exciting, fun and most of all encouraging day for all members of the rainbow and wider community.

**This article first appeared in the new September issue of the Star Observer, which is currently available in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Adelaide and Canberra.  Click here to find out where you can grab your free copy or click here to read the magazine in digital flip-book format.


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