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White House staff join millions standing against bullying for Spirit Day

Nick Duffy October 20, 2016

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Staff at the White House are wearing purple today, to celebrate LGBT anti-bullying event Spirit Day.

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Each year, celebrities, media outlets, brands, landmarks, sports leagues, faith groups, school districts, universities, and everyday individuals join GLAAD on Spirit Day to go purple in a united stand against bullying and to show their support for LGBTQ youth.

Pop superstar Britney Spears used her Wednesday night concert at Planet Hollywood Las Vegas to enlist her fans in participating in Spirit Day, including providing the audience with Spirit Day swag and replacing her regularly multi-coloured confetti with all-purple confetti as she closed the show.

President Obama’s staff also took part in the event today, posing for a group photo in purple.

A spokesperson said: “We are all more free when we are treated as equals. Today, White House staff stand against bullying and in support of LGBTQ youth.”

Target is participating in Spirit Day 2016 by turning up their #TakePride platform on Spotify with a special playlist to fill the world with positive vibes. Listeners can check out here and take a stand against bullying. The playlist, along with Target’s banner ads on Spotify, are expected to reach over 44 million listeners.

iHeartMedia went purple for its fourth consecutive year, and for the first time supported SpiritDay on air with PSAs featuring Lady Gaga, Troye Sivan, Elvis Duran and Andy Grammer. The PSAs are currently airing across CHR and AC stations nationwide and encourage listeners to go purple and unite against the bullying of LGBT youth. In addition, on-air personalities across the country are discussing the importance of Spirit Day with listeners and throughout their programs today. iHeartRadio, iHeartMedia’s all-in-one streaming music and live digital radio service, went purple in-app, on iHeartRadio.com, via social media and on its Snapchat Discover channel.

Toyota Financial Services supported Spirit Day by powering the “Go Purple for #SpiritDay” app. The free app allows users to take part in Spirit Day and support LGBTQ youth by making their social media profiles purple. The app also offers anti-bullying resources for students, parents, and educators.

Kellogg’s hosted a special Spirit Day breakfast at the Kellogg’s NYC café in Times Square inviting guests to start their Spirit Day with the “Official Spirit Day Bowl.” The event also featured special guest and America’s Got Talent finalist Brian Just Crum, who performed live and shared his personal story about how bullying affected his life. Additionally, Kellogg’s and 10 of its iconic brands proudly went purple on social media by encouraging followers to share their personal stories. Kellogg’s employees also showed their support for Spirit Day in video voicing their support for anti-bullying initiatives.

Viacom’s properties and talent are going purple for Spirit Day across networks with MTV, MTV2, VH1, Logo, CMT, Spike, and Paramount taking part. Talent participating includes Michelle Visage, MTV News’ Ana Marie Cox and Jamil Smith, the cast of Teen Mom, Holland Roden, Scout Durwood, Anna Lore, Rip Michaels, David Magidoff, Burpie, and Tonio Skits. Additionally, Logo’s Global Ally campaign is a sponsor of Spirit Day’s international efforts, including the Spirit Day Kit in six different languages.

Streaming service Hulu showed its support for LGBTQ youth this #SpiritDay with a special selection of LGBTQ-inclusive television series and short films for viewers to enjoy.

Comcast NBCUniversal went purple across properties and programs, including TODAY, Sprout, the cast of USA’s Eyewitness, E! News, as well has many local affiliates. In addition to wearing purple on air, hosts of TODAY shared a message of support for LGBTGQ youth on air during the show’s October 20 broadcast.

ABC celebrated Spirit Day with its Be Inspired Campaign, which urges people to #ChooseKindness throughout the month of October. This will be accomplished through original programming that reinforces the importance of being kind, and a customized public service announcement (PSA) campaign that will air on multiple platforms across ABC, ABC-owned television stations, Freeform, Disney Channel, Disney XD and Radio Disney. Good Morning America also took part in the day – with anchors wearing purple on the October 20 broadcast and speaking on air about the issue of LGBTQ bullying.

Spirit Day will culminate in a memorial at Pulse Nightclub in Orlando to honor the victims of the tragedy. Natalia (Nats) Getty, founder and designer of Strike Oil, is partnering with LA-based street artist, Mr. Brainwash, and The Girls’ Lounge to create a memorial mural to honor the victims, with proceeds going to the Pulse Foundation and GLAAD.

Screens across Times Square in New York City will feature special Spirit Day anti-bullying messages, including screens at MTV, NASDAQ, and Thomson Reuters. Additionally, Viacom’s 1515 Broadway headquarters will illuminate in purple for Spirit Day.

To commemorate Spirit Day, Twitter and Major League Baseball (MLB) teamed up to launch a #SpiritDay emoji in support of LGBTQ youth and to take a stand against bullying. Additionally, Billy Bean, the Vice President of Social Responsibility & Inclusion with MLB, will be at Dodger Stadium prior to NLCS Game Five where he will wear a special purple #SpiritDay t-shirt featuring the new Twitter emoji to demonstrate MLB’s commitment to the cause.

Spirit Day is made possible by the generous support of its presenting partners Target and Wells Fargo, official partners, NBA and WNBA, NFL, Viacom, and WWE, and supporting partners, American Eagle Outfitters, Barilla, Comcast NBCUniversal, Kellogg’s, Kirkland & Ellis, Toyota Financial Services, and Zipcar.

Spanish-language media and celebrities participating includes Patricia Velásquez, Ozomatli, The hosts of Un Nuevo Día on Telelundo, The hosts of Despierta América on Univision, the hosts Al Rojo Vivo, hosts of Aquí y Ahora, Hosts of Primer Impacto, Omar Velasco and Argelia Atilano, Aislinn Derbez, Fernanda Castillo y Sandra Echeverria, Enrique Santos, Roxana Chávez, Jessica Aguilar, Yarel Ramos, Raul Brindis, Pancho Mercado, Mariana Torres, Carla Medina, Mariana Seoane, and Rene Pineda.

Additional celebrity participants for Spirit Day include Kaitlyn Alexander, Thom Allison, Brittany Ashley, Elise Bauman, Sharon Belle, Michael Ian Black, Annie Briggs, Wade Briggs, Blossom Brown, Amy Bruni & Adam Berry, Aaron Chartrand, Kristin Chenoweth, Laverne Cox, Zackary Drucker, Gaby Dunn, Rhys Ernst, Popo Fan, Daniel Franzese, Billy Gilman, Gigi Gorgeous, Laura Jane Grace, Alexandra Grey, Ian Harvie, Kris Hayashi, Ty Herndon, Skylar Kergil, Steven Krueger, Chet Lam, Katie Leclerc, Trace Lysette, Charlotte McKinney, Stephanie McMahon, Dannii Minogue, Kenny Moffitt, Maria Munir, Hari Nef, Natasha Negovanlis, Stephanie Nogueras, Ozomatl, Maulik Pancholy, Trey Pearson, cast of The Residuals, Geena Rocero, Bamby Salcedo, Justin Tranter, Lena Waithe, Sam Waterston, Raquel Willis, and the cast of Wynonna Earp.

Sports organizations participating include GO! Athletes, Major League Baseball (MLB), Major League Soccer (MLS), National Basketball Association (NBA), OUT Sports, Sports for Sharing, Trans*Athlete, WWE, and Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA).

Additional media organizations participating include CBS, Diva, The Hamilcast, Nielsen, Oderland-Presse, OutNews Global, and Voice for China LGBT.

Other businesses participating include Anthem Inc- ANGLE (Employee LGBT Resource Group), Boyd Law, CNA Insurance, Dazeworks Technologies Pvt Ltd, DigitasLBi, Fourth Wall Events, Gordon, Elias & Seely, LLP, Happn, Law Offices of Jay Knispel, LEAGUE @ AT&T, Lendlease, Martian Entertainment, Nationwide Pride ARG- Scottsdale, Nielsen, Opportunies for Learning- Hawthorne, Optimedia, Publicis Groupe Egalite, Sony Playstation, Sterns & Walker, The Law Firm of Aaron A. Herbert, United Airlines, and USG Corporation.

Organizations participating include Amazin LeThi Foundation, Australian LGBTI Media Centre, Beijing LGBT Center (China), Beijing Gender Health Education Institute (China), BiCast, BiNet USA, Bisexual Resource Center, Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community Center, Council on Foundations, Danlan Welfare (China), The DC Center for the LGBT Community, Dharma & Martia- LGBTI Rights in the Middle East, Ditch The Label, Diversity Media Awards (Italy), DoSomething.org, Drury University Allies, Egalite/Publicis Group, Equal Ground, Equality for All Foundation (Jamaica), Equality Texas, Espectro CSF (Mexico), Fair Wisconsin, Federation of Gay Games, Feminist Scholar Activists, Footage Foundation, Gay Spot (China), Gay Men’s Health Crisis (GMHC), Gender Watch China, GLSEN Southern Maine, Harry Potter Alliance, J-FLAG, KnowYourself (China), Lambda Legal, Log Cabin Republicans, Los Angeles LGBT Center, LULAC, Milwaukee Pride, Music Business Association, My Kid Is Gay, National Womens Coalition Against Violence & Exploitation (NWCAVE), Nooga Diversity Center, NYC & Tri-State Area Clemson Alumni Club, Oderland-Presse, One Colorado, Out In Tech, OUTLaw WVU, PACER’s National Bullying, Prevention Center, PROMO, Queer Lala Times (China), Real Live Connection, Red de la diversidad sexual (Mexico), Resource Center, Safe Schools Action Network, South Carolina Equality, #StillBisexual , Sun Life Family Health Center, Temple Moor Science College, Tennessee Equality Project, Tennessee Transgender Political Coalition, The Village Family Services, The Global Justice Institue , To Love And Inspire, Tongyu Organization (China), Transgender Michigan, True Colors Fund, Tyler Clementi Foundation, United Nations Free & Equal, and Youth First.

Faith-based organizations participating include Cathedral of Hope, Covenant Network of Presbyterians, Dallas Universal Life Church, Inc., DignityUSA, Equally Blessed Coalition, Gay & Lesbian Vaishnava Association, Mumbai, Metropolitan Community Churches, Metropolitcan Community Church of New York, More Light Presbyterians, New Ways Ministry, Other Sheep, Reconciling Ministries Network, ReconcilingWorks: Lutherans for Full Participation, The Crossing Campus Ministry, The Naming Project, and United Church of Christ.

Each year school districts, high school gay-straight alliances, colleges and universities also participate. This year they include: AFSA High School, Alliance College-Ready Middle Academy #8, Association House High School, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Chino Hills High School LGBT Alliance, Counseling and Support Services for Youth at Redwood Middle School , De Rochebelle High School – Comité Alliés, Diversity LGBT+ Ningbo (China), Dr. Kenneth B. Clark Academy, Elkhorn High School’s Tolerance, Equality and  Acceptance (TEA) Club, Esperanza Academy Charter High School, Episcopal School of Baton Rouge, ETAP Graduate, Fairview High School, Feminist Scholar Activists, Flagship XJTLU (China), GLOBES @ UGA, LGBT-IMPAQ Equity & Equality Student Organization, James Madison Middle School and Magnet, Prince George High School GSA, Stephen F. Austin High School GSA, SYSU Rainbow Group (China), The Shipley School, University of WuHan (China), Williamsburg Charter High School and, Wilder’s Prepatory Academy Charter School.

Related: 13 ideas for a perfectly purple Spirit Day costume

13 ideas for a perfectly purple Spirit Day costume

More: Gay, LGBT, spirit day, US, US Election 2016, White House

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