Today, HRC Foundation announced the first-ever National #HBCUOutLoud Day, providing an important opportunity for everyone who cares about supporting the LGBTQ community and Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) to speak up and speak out. As part of #HBCUOutLoud Day, and in cooperation with the bipartisan HBCU Caucus and the Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus, HRC is today hosting a discussion on Capitol Hill exploring the ways Congress can partner with HBCUs to support LGBTQ diversity and inclusion efforts on campuses.
“For decades, HBCUs have been driving forces of social justice movements and equality around the country -- however, the stories, experiences and contributions of Black LGBTQ folks can often go unnoticed or under-recognized,” said HRC Foundation HBCU Program Director Leslie Hall. “HRC’s #HBCUOutLoud Day seeks to elevate the visibility, awareness and stories of LGBTQ students, staff and alumni of HBCUs who are challenging norms and stereotypes and pushing to create a more equitable and inclusive society.”
The HRC Foundation is also on the ground today at Prairie View A&M University (PVAMU) in Texas for the grand opening of the school’s LGBTQ+ Resource Office. The event will include a “Building an Inclusive Campus” workshop at 10 a.m., conducted by HRC Foundation HBCU Program Manager Rishard Butts, and a ribbon-cutting ceremony at noon. The office at PVAMU will be the fifth designated LGBTQ office or center at an HBCU in the U.S.
Research demonstrates that the landscape for equity and inclusion for LGBTQ students on HBCU campuses is improving, yet many still lack the policies and practices that seek to end discrimination, stigma and bias still experienced by too many. In creating the national #HBCUOutLoud Day, the HRC Foundation is not only raising public awareness about the HBCU LGBTQ community, but also providing easy ways for people to make a make a difference on their campuses and in their wider communities.
The HRC Foundation’s HBCU Program mobilizes and supports HBCUs in enhancing policies and services that promote excellence in LGBTQ inclusion, equity and engagement. The program focuses on promoting individual competencies and collective action, empowering leaders and stakeholders and building a network of committed leaders in pursuit of eliminating stigma and enriching the college experience for LGBTQ students and the entire student body.
HRC’s HBCU Program was founded to support LGBTQ students at HBCUs by providing resources and trainings to advance affirming and supportive college campuses. The program is supported by the Coca-Cola Foundation.
For more information about HRC’s HBCU Project, visit http://www.hrc.org/hbcu.