For the last 45 years, the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community has celebrated June as LGBT Pride month. Originally to commemorate the Stonewall riots in 1969, the celebration has since grown to be a time to take a stance against discrimination and for the right to live openly and proudly without persecution. Recently, President Obama released a proclamation to recognize June as LGBT Pride Month, just barely a year after the US Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage in all 50 states. The LGBT community has made tremendous strides in America to get the country on the right side of history.
With the rest of the world, the NAPA Board awoke Sunday morning to the news of the worst mass shooting in recent US history. NAPA is saddened by this unspeakable tragedy and its strike against the LGBT community. It is okay to be upset, frustrated, sad, and confused during this time; many NAPA members are still internally processing this day. As Americans deal with this event and the difficult path ahead, NAPA proclaims its deepest care for its LGBT members.
As organizations founded to promote awareness of Asian American, Pacific Islander, and Desi identities, NAPA truly believes that any act of hate is unacceptable and NAPA’s organizations will continue to foster and promote inclusive environments where its members can live authentically. NAPA encourages its members to seek out mental health services available to them on their campus or through a mental health care provider during this time. In addition, NAPA urges its heterosexual members to check in with loved ones, friends, or colleagues who identify as LGBT because it can make all the difference in how they are feeling right now.
To better serve its members and the association’s commitment to diversity, NAPA recently created the LGBTQ Initiative Project Lead position and appointed Toubee Yang, from Lambda Phi Epsilon International Fraternity, Inc., to develop initiatives and programs to raise awareness around these LGBTQ experiences. Toubee Yang and NAPA Vice Chair, Vigor Lam, have also facilitated two webinars featuring LGBT-identified NAPA members sharing their experiences and recommendations. Feel free to show pride and support with custom Facebook cover photos made for each NAPA organization. Please follow NAPA’s social media to receive news of upcoming LGBTQ programs and resources or contact NAPA’s LGBTQ Initiative Project Lead at firstname.lastname@example.org.