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Allyship

10 min
In this unit, we will explore how you can be an active ally to the LGBTQ2+ community.

Content created by our partner OK2BME

Take 2-3 minutes to reflect on the question below and note your answers.

Can you think of examples of popular media, like movies and shows, that have queer and/or trans characters?

What examples were you able to imagine? You might have recognized any number of things, including:

  • That LGBTQ2+ folk are often underrepresented in popular media.
  • It is a privilege to easily think of people who represent your identity in popular-media, the workplace, academia, health and other areas of our society.

We invite heterosexual and cisgender learners to complete this privilege reflection to understand the privileges their identity affords them. Once you answer the questions continue to the next slide.

We recognize that people can experience a combination of some of these privileges due to identities beyond gender and sexuality. This activity is not to shame anyone for having privileges, as many privileges we have are automatic because of our identities. However, it can be helpful when trying to promote inclusion and equity, to be aware of our unearned privileges.

  1. Do you fear interactions with police officers due to your gender identity?
  2. Would you be granted immediate access to your loved one in case of an accident or emergency?
  3. Do you worry about being evicted if your landlord finds out about your sexuality?
  4. Can you easily find role models and mentors to emulate who share your identity?

(It's Pronounced Metrosexual)

We complete the privilege reflection on the previous slide to highlight how the realities facing LGBTQ2+ folks differ from those of cisgender and heterosexual people. We do this to stress the importance of allyship.

What is allyship?

Allyship is an active and ongoing practice in which someone outside of a community aims to work in solidarity with a community, often one that faces marginalization.

Allyship calls individuals to look beyond their personal experiences and empathize with a person or group’s marginalized experiences.

Key aspects of allyship are:

Allyship dos:

  • Do be supportive.
  • Do listen to your friends and community.
  • Do stand up to people if you observe discrimination against someone because of their gender or sexuality.
  • Do ask yourself, if I was LGBTQ2+ would I feel comfortable here? What would make me feel comfortable?
  • Do use folks’ authentic names and pronouns.
  • Do lead by example to ensure those around you are aware of their responsibility and power to promote inclusivity.

Allyship don’ts:

  • Don’t be a bystander.
  • Don’t make assumptions.
  • Don’t ask intrusive personal questions.
  • Don’t be afraid to seek additional knowledge from sources offering education.
  • Don’t accept hate and being uncomfortable as “normal.”
  • Don’t think it has nothing to do with you.

Things to remember:

Allyship is a lifelong commitment to learn.

Allies are diverse and recognize that support comes in many forms.

Allies reflect on their values and beliefs to be better supports.

How would you rate this education unit?
1 = would not recommend; 5 = would recommend

  • 5
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  • 1

Did you learn something new?

  • Yes
  • No

Congratulations. Unit Complete!

"We should indeed keep calm in the face of difference, and live our lives in a state of inclusion and wonder at the diversity of humanity.”

- George Takei