How to Celebrate Pride Now — and All-Year Round

The fight for LGBTQIA+ rights isn’t an annual event. Here’s how to lend ongoing support.

By Caitlin Kilgore
Two women with rainbows painted on their arms embrace.

The month of June marks the celebration of Pride in many cities across the globe, but the occasion hasn’t always been about the joyous parties, parades and festivities we associate it with today. 

It began as a protest — or more accurately, a riot — against unjust belief systems and a desperate fight for equal rights for the gay community (which is now the more inclusive LGBTQIA+ community — lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and/or questioning, intersex, asexual).

The History of Pride

In New York City, over fifty years ago, the Stonewall Riots helped spur the beginnings of the modern LGBTQIA+ liberation movement

On June 28,1969, the police stormed the Stonewall Inn — a bar that was a safe haven for gay New Yorkers. Police raids of bars were not uncommon at the time due to a city liquor law that deemed “the gathering of homosexuals to be disorderly. As the police began arresting bar patrons, violently forcing them out on the street and into cop cars, the crowd decided to fight back and the confrontations continued over several days. 

The following year, thousands marched from Christopher Street to Central Park in what became the first gay pride parade. Every year since, that spirit of resistance has erupted into a celebration of individuality and a continued fight for equality.

Progress is Not Perfection

Where we are: Same-sex couples can now legally get married in all 50 states, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals can serve in the military and laws banning homosexual activity have been overturned. Despite these meaningful strides, the LGBTQIA+ community is still marginalized and in danger. Twenty seven trans individuals have been killed from January to May this year alone. 

So while you’re celebrating (and you should!), don’t forget the importance of supporting and championing the LGBTQIA+ community 365 days a year. 

Read on for resources and organizations that can help.

Mental Health Resources for the LGBTQIA+ Community

There is a great disparity within marginalized communities when it comes to mental health, particularly for those who identify as LGBTQIA+. 

According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, LGBTQIA+ adults are “more than twice as likely as heterosexual adults to experience a mental health condition. Transgender individuals are nearly four times as likely as cisgender individuals (people whose gender identity corresponds with their birth sex) to experience a mental health condition.”

It’s also estimated that LGBTQIA+ adults are twice as likely as heterosexual adults to develop substance abuse disorders and LGBTQIA+ youth have a 120% higher risk of experiencing homelessness

Below, organizations that offer mental health resources and support:

Organizations to Support: 

For Further Education:

Podcasts:

In the mood to jam to some tunes? Here’s Nikko Medina’s Pride Playlist of favorite gay anthem songs and music by queer artists.

Books:

Articles:

Want to be a good ally? Read “An Ally’s Guide to Terminology.

Movies and TV Shows:

These lists are by no means exhaustive —  we will continue to add to it. 

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