What is an Ally?
An Ally is a visible member of the Claremont Colleges (staff, faculty, or student) who is supportive of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, and intersex community, and willing to provide a safe space and a ready ear to anyone concerned with issues of sexual orientation or gender identity.
Qualities of an Ally
- believes in the equality and dignity of people who are LGBTQ and their right to live and pursue their goals free from intolerance, discrimination, and harassment
- generally has more power than the group they are standing up for
- works to develop an understand of people who are different from them
- seeks to develop an understanding of heterosexism, homophobia, and transphobia
- expects to make some mistakes but does not use mistakes or fear as an excuse for non-action
- works to develop an understanding of how prejudice and discrimination against people who are LGBTQ oppresses those individuals, while also providing societal privileges to people who are heterosexual
- refuses to ignore or accept discrimination, homophobia, transphobia and other oppressions that exist in their environment
- attends QRC events!
- * attends an Ally training to receive an Ally placard to display in room or office.
Four Basic Levels of Becoming an Ally
- Awareness: Explore how you are different from and similar to gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, queer and questioning people. Gain this awareness through talking with LGBTQ people attending workshops and self-examination.
- Knowledge/ Education: Begin to understand policies, laws and practices and how they affect LGBTQ people. Educate yourself on the many communities of LGBTQ people.
- Skills: This is an area that is difficult for many people. You must learn to take your awareness and knowledge and communicate it to others. You can acquire these skills by attending workshops, role playing with friends or peers, and developing supportive connections.
- Action: This is the most important and frightening step. Despite the fears, action is the only way to effect change in community as a whole.
Options for Visibility as an Ally
- Display your “Ally placard” in a visible location that is clearly associated with you, the Ally
- Attend events with LGBTQ themes (movies, speakers, etc.)
- Support LGBTQ groups through attending events, promoting the groups, encouraging involvement
- Confront homophobic/transphobic language
- Interrupt offensive jokes
- Celebrate LGBTQ cultural holidays: National Coming Out Day (Oct. 11th), Pride Week, Day of Silence, Transgender Day of Remembrance, Intersex Awareness Day, etc.
Materials adapted from Arizona State University’s Becoming An Ally
What is the Ally Training About?
- In a safe space participants will learn about issues faced in the LGBTQQI community, discuss issues of homophobia, heterosexism, receive resources, and learn how to be an Ally.
You don’t’ have to be an expert.
- You don’t have to be a counselor.
- You just have to be there.
For more information about scheduling an Ally Training or to find out when our next training will be held please contact Adriana di Bartolo.