High school clubs to host community forum on anti-LGBTQ hate
Student-led forum takes place after hate crimes and National Coming Out Day
– Students from Paso Robles High School will organize a community forum on combating hate and creating safe spaces within a high school setting. The forum, titled “Coming Out Against Hate”, takes place Wednesday, October 20 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Performing Arts Center at Paso Robles High School. Students, teachers, parents, allies, friends, media and community members are welcome to attend.
This student-run forum takes place after an anti-LGBTQ hate crime at PRHS as well as National Coming Out Day, October 11. In late September, a Tik Tok video was circulated widely involving a local student defecating over a pride flag. This forum seeks to unite to condemn anti-LGBTQ fanaticism and provide a safe space where LGBTQ students and their allies can share their experiences and visions for a more welcoming and inclusive educational environment. This is the first forum of its kind in Paso Robles.
For the forum, students will share their stories and a short film will be screened featuring LGBTQ students talking about high school challenges. There will be a question and answer session after their stories.
“When you’re a high school student in the LGBTQ community, you walk into every classroom and every bathroom not knowing if you’ve entered a safe space,” says Danny Perez, one of the guest speakers. “You endure angry stares and micro-aggression assaults that reduce your self-confidence. It’s exhausting. “
“We hope to raise awareness in the community about the reality of LGBTQ youth,” says Eve Barajas, president of the PRHS Equality Club. “We are here and it is time for our voices to be heard. “
The event is sponsored by the PRHS Equality Club, ACT Club, OJOI Club, BSU, NOSB, MEChA and the Associated Student Body of PRHS.
For more information, contact Geoffrey Land, PRHS professor, [email protected]