Wear It Purple Day Date in the current year: August 26, 2022

Wear It Purple Day Thousands of Australians wear purple on the last Friday of August to support the LGBTQIA+ community, especially queer young people, and celebrate diversity. Wear It Purple Day has been observed annually since 2010.

According to research, suicide attempt rates and suicidal thoughts among LGBTQ+ youth are significantly higher than among the general population. The Trevor Project states that bisexual youth, transgender and non-binary youth, and LGBTQ youth of color are especially at risk. It should be noted that LGBTQ youth aren’t inherently more prone to suicide. Their higher suicide risk can be attributed to mistreatment and stigmatization, discriminatory legislation, bullying, and institutionalized and internalized homophobia.

The Wear It Purple campaign was co-founded by Katherine Hudson and Scott Williams in 2010 in response to the suicide of Tyler Clementi, an American student who was bullied by his roommate and jumped from the George Washington Bridge on September 22, 2010, as well as stories of other queer teenagers who had killed themselves due to being bullied and harassed because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. Their main goal was to support queer young people and show them that there’s hope and it does get better.

The inaugural Wear It Purple Day was observed on October 15, 2010. It received support from the Minister for Health, Minister for Education, members of Parliament from almost all parties, the Teachers Federation, R U OK? (non-profit suicide prevention organization), and Coming Out Australia. In 2011 and 2012, Wear It Purple Day was held in early September. Its current date, the last Friday in August, was adopted in 2013.

Over time, the focus of Wear It Purple Day has shifted from raising awareness of the high rates of bullying experienced by LGBTQ+ teens and honoring the memory of suicide victims to celebrating pride and diversity and empowering LGBTQ+ youth.

One of the most amazing things about Wear It Purple Day is that it was created by young people for young people. Wear It Purple’s projects are coordinated by the Young Action Council that consists of young people aged 24 or under who understand the movement’s demographic because they belong to this demographic themselves.

Although Wear It Purple Day originated in Australia, you can participate regardless of where you live. You can support the campaign by wearing purple (obviously), donating to Wear It Purple or any other LGBTQ or suicide prevention organization, reaching out to LGBTQIA+ teens who need your help, sharing links to resources for LGBTQ+ youth, and spreading the word on social media with the hashtag #WearItPurpleDay.

Wear It Purple Day should not be confused with Purple Day. The former is an LGBTQIA+ awareness campaign, while the latter is an international grassroots campaign dedicated to increasing epilepsy awareness around the globe. There’s also an international observance similar to Wear It Purple Day called Spirit Day. Inaugurated the same year, it is held on the third Thursday of October to raise awareness of bullying-related suicides of LGBTQ+ youth.

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Category

Other Observances

Country

Australia

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Wear It Purple Day, observances in Australia, LGBT awareness days, LGBTQIA+ awareness days, Wear It Purple campaign