Dear campus community,
Yet another reminder of why we celebrate Pride month each June, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, there are 543,000 same-sex married couples. From its start as a Gay Pride Day to the current recognition of Pride month, we use this time to recognize the impact that individuals identifying their sexual orientation as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer or other (LGBTQ+) have had on history locally, nationally, and internationally.
The Stonewall Riots that began on June 28, 1969, following a police raid at the Stonewall Inn brought national attention to the police harassment and discrimination faced by members of the LGBTQ+ community. In 1998, President Bill Clinton issued the first US proclamation for Gay and Lesbian Pride Month. On June 1, 2009, President Barack Obama extended this recognition with a proclamation for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride Month.
While this month highlights past activists like Marsha P. Johnson, who is credited with leading the Stonewall uprising, as well as work by contemporaries at our LGBT Resource Center and other locations in the UCI community, we should not limit our activities to learn and support LGBTQ+ causes to a solitary month. The recent findings from an OC Hate Crimes report shows that the 35%-increase in hate crimes included 11% motivated by anti-LGBTQ+ bias. These acts of violence when targeting one group affect the safety and viability of our whole community.
I encourage your involvement this month and year in deeper study and allyship to support issues of interest in the LGBTQ+ community. Below are a few examples of these opportunities.
- Celebrate Pride week with events and activities at the LGBT Resource Center, May 31-June 3. Review details at the LGBT Resource Center website.
- Join the Queer Trans and Allies in Biological Sciences (QTABS) symposium, 1 p.m., June 2 in the CNLM Courtyard and Herklotz Conference Room. RSVP for details and registration.
- Explore the Gender and Sexuality Studies research databases hosted at the UCI Libraries.
- Arrange for hosting Safe Zone ally training for your immediate office through the LGBT Resource Center.
- Link to relevant UCI reports, webpages and resources to promote greater inclusion, particularly related to the Gender Recognition Act.
Please join me in dedicating to a month of greater exploration and education to support the LGBTQ+ community at and beyond UCI.
Douglas M. Haynes, Ph.D. (Pronouns: he/him/his)
Vice Chancellor for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion
Chief Diversity Officer
Director, ADVANCE Program
Professor of History