National Coming Out Day unites entire student body: Students celebrate and promote the LGBTQ+ community at Schreiber

Rebecca Charno and Valerie Mondschein

On Oct. 11, high school students celebrated National Coming Out Day all over the country.  This day acknowledges people in the LGBTQ+ community as well as allies, and students in the Schreiber Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) used this day to promote the acceptance of the LGBTQ+ community at Schreiber.  The members worked to help students realize that all people should be accepted no matter what by spreading positive words of inclusion.

Throughout the day, members of the GSA met in the lobby to hand out flyers explaining what the club hoped to accomplish on Coming Out Day. They walked around handing flyers out and making all students aware of the significance of this day.

“It made me feel really great that Schreiber has a program like this that can help teens who are struggling with their sexuality,” said freshman Max Goldman.  “Seeing what a group of high school students can do makes me want to join more clubs and get as involved as I can so I can have the same positive effects on our school.”

In addition to handing out flyers, members handed out ribbons, buttons, and rainbow pins.  The rainbow symbol represents the LGBTQ+ community and stands for the respect and inclusion that this day represents.

“When I received one of these pins, it made me happy to think I was contributing to the community and supporting my classmates,” said sophomore Daniela Stelcer.

The GSA set up a table in the lobby during 4-1 and 4-2, where they handed out pins, buttons, and free popcorn. Many students pinned the ribbons to their backpacks to support their classmates and friends. In addition, the GSA also handed out flyers provided by LIGALY, Long Island Gay and Lesbian Youth. These flyers explained the significance of National Coming Out day and provided information about how to provide support as an ally. This was done to show that everyone was able to come together and support and accept each other for who they are, no matter their sexual orientation or gender identity.

“On this day, I felt proud to support my friends who were brave enough to come out”, said freshman Arianna Asselta.

This celebration of this day allowed for students and staff come together to give support to the Schreiber LGBTQ+ community, so that they would have the bravery to come out and feel safe to be themselves at school.  The tradition began 28 years ago, on the anniversary of the National March on Washington for Lesbian and Gay Rights.

“I think it’s really awesome that people feel comfortable enough to all come out together and aren’t afraid to show their true colors in a day of acceptance,” said junior Amanda Krantz.

Members of the GSA put time and effort into making this day an event that the entire school knew about.  Their ultimate goal was to make sure everyone who came through the lobby stopped at their table, and learned what National Coming Out Day is and why it exists.

“I think it is amazing that people all over the school and country can unite in their support of the LGBT community,” said junior Lauren Seltzer.