Shuck and Jive

Opinions expressed here are my own and do not represent the views of the congregation I joyfully serve. But my congregation loves me!

Monday, April 07, 2008

Ten Things You Can Do to be a Straight Ally

Several of us from PFLAG Tri-Cities answered phones for the WETS pledge drive during Susan Lachman's show, Women On Air. Susan is awesome. They normally don't take pledges on the weekend. But it is a good thing we did as we took pledges for $1207!

Our first PFLAG Tri-Cities meeting is April 17th at 7 p.m.

Here are ten things you can do as a straight ally:

There are literally hundreds of ways that you can show support as a straight ally -- from the way that you respond in conversations to what companies you support to which legislators you elect.

Here are 10 simple ways to get started.

Be sure to come back on October 11 to learn more with the first official publication from Straight for Equality!

Become informed about the realities, challenges and issues affecting the lives of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender (GLBT) people’s lives through websites, books, documentaries, and educational materials.

Be open about having GLBT friends, family or acquaintances that you value, respect, and are grateful to have in your life. When you talk about them, don’t omit the fact that they are GLBT.

Speak up when you hear derogatory slurs or jokes and don’t use them yourself.

Ask if you are unsure how a GLBT friend, family member or acquaintance would like their significant other to be referred to or introduced, rather than avoiding acknowledgment of the relationship.

Help your kids learn about and appreciate all different kinds of families. Be mindful of the day-to-day messages that they are receiving about GLBT people and issues in school, from friends, and on TV and talk about what they encounter with them.

Quit or don’t join organizations that overtly discriminate. Let them know why you are leaving or not joining in the first place.

Support GLBT-owned and GLBT-friendly businesses.

Encourage and support company policies and programs that promote a positive work environment for GLBT employees at your workplace. If your company has a GLBT network group, join and encourage them to include straight allies so more people can be openly supportive of their work.

Write letters to the editor of your newspaper to comment as a straight ally on why you support respectful and equal treatment for GLBT people.

Call, write, e-mail, or visit public policy makers and let them know that as a straight person who votes, you support laws that extend equal rights and protections to GLBT people.

And here's one more...
If you haven't already, take the Straight for Equality Pledge and get a friend (or two) to do the same!