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Get Involved: National Coming Out Day

Every year, the United States celebrates National Coming Out Day on October 11, and 2018 marks its 30th anniversary. It was started by Robert Eichberg and Jean O’Leary in 1988. Eichberg explained the need for the day by saying, “Most people think they don't know anyone gay or lesbian, and in fact everybody does.”
Get Involved: National Coming Out Day

by Katherine Durgin-Bruce

October 11, 2018

People come out by telling friends, family, and society that they are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, or as an ally to LGBTQ people. National Coming Out Day began on the 1st anniversary of the 1987 National March on Washington for Lesbian and Gay Rights. The month of October is also LGBTQ History month.

Wondering what more you can do to support the LGBTQ community? Start with these resources, then check out our interview with Nadine Smith, who attended the 1987 March and co-organized the 1993 March, as well as co-founded LGBTQ civil rights organization Equality Florida.


“You Can Tell Just By Looking”: And 20 Other Myths about LGBT Life and People by Michael Bronski, Ann Pellegrini, and Michael Amico, for misconceptions and truths from lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people
+ The Letter Q: Queer Writers’ Letters to their Younger Selves, edited by James Lecesne and Sarah Moon


Human Rights Campaign’s topic resources, coming out stories, and resource guides 
+ GLSEN’s resources for students


Coming out videos on YouTube with this list from Wired for direct links to some great ones 
+ The PBS collection of LGBTQ-related films, series and short stories


Your kindergarten through twelfth graders using GLSEN’s LGBT-inclusive lesson plans about identity, bullying, and diversity 
+ Scholastic's
 book and resource recommendations for creating an LGBT-friendly classroom library
Anti-Defamation League's LGBTQ Pride Month lesson plans


Battery Park City’s showing of Love, Simon, starting at 7 p.m. on October 11 in Rockefeller Park
+ A poetry reading hosted by the School of Visual Arts for National Coming Out Day from 7–9 p.m. on October 11 in Manhattan
+ New York City Department of Parks & Recreation’s picnic celebration for National Coming Out Day from 2–5 p.m. on October 13 in Staten Island


With The Trevor Project, which provides crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to LGBTQ youth
+ Share your story with It Gets Better Project


Illustration by Benjamin Tuttle / Ultravirgo

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