Alexandra Bolles, Associate Director of Campaigns & Spirit Day Program Manager, GLAAD
Spirit Day is the largest and most visible anti-bullying campaign in the world accelerating acceptance of LGBTQ youth. It inspires millions of people around the world to wear purple or ‘go purple’ online in a unified stand against bullying and to show their support for LGBTQ youth. Each year, Spirit Day draws the participation of celebrities, corporations, media outlets, sports leagues, schools, faith institutions, national landmarks, and individuals.
Coinciding with National Bullying Prevention Month, Spirit Day began in 2010 after a high school student posted the idea to her Tumblr page following the suicide deaths of several LGBTQ and LGBTQ-perceived young people. According to GLSEN's most recent National School Climate Survey, 57.6% of LGBTQ students felt unsafe at school because of their sexual orientation and 43.3% because of their gender expression. GLSEN also reported that 85.2% of LGBTQ students experienced verbal harassment (e.g., called names or threatened) at school based on a personal characteristic.
iHeartMedia will ‘go purple’ for its fifth consecutive year and released PSAs that encourage listeners to ‘go purple’ and take the Spirit Day pledge to unite of against the bullying of LGBTQ youth. Halsey, Lady Gaga, and Elvis Duran are just a few of the personalities to participate in the PSAs. iHeartRadio, iHeartMedia’s free all-in-one digital music, podcasting and live streaming radio service, went purple in-app, on iHeartRadio.com, via social media and on its Snapchat Discover channel.
For 2017, the music industry is out in full force supporting Spirit Day with Celine Dion, Britney Spears, Halsey, Fergie, Christina Aguilera, Wrabel, Luis Fonsi, Michael Ray, and more participating.