“It’s the un-education that leads to violence, ignorance, and abuse of our communities, so I think it’s pretty important that allies are aware of this,” said Shannon Hart, transgender rights advocate.
P.R.I.D.E., or people respecting individuals differences and equality, wants to educate the community so that people can better understand others and even themselves.
“It’s meant to draw them into the discussion and have them ask questions that might be a little uncomfortable but that’s the only way they’re ever gonna be educated,” Hart said.
Last week they held a panel called “SafeZone,” in which they discussed terminology in regards to the LGBT community so that those who attended would better understand individual differences, and could learn ways to help others with those differences.
“Try taking cultures from around the world and go, and well in China, pink was traditionally a boys color, and they’re gonna go peeewww,” Hart said.
P.R.I.D.E. also wants to stand up for what they believe in.
The University of Arkansas Board of Trustees in Little Rock recently made the decision that student health insurance will no longer cover gender dysphoria amongst transgender students.
P.R.I.D.E. is organizing a protest on the fourth of march in order to stand up against this decision. They have been collecting signatures for a petition, and spreading awareness outside of the union.
“The reason that it’s so important to speak out is that one act of discrimination and one act of prejudice, it impacts all of us. Whether you’re straight, white, cis and male, it still impacts you because trans rights are human rights,” Hart said.
Story by UATV Reporter Ramsey Minto