The LGB Safe Place Program identifies offices of MSU faculty and staff that are safe places for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people. Such offices are identified with a decal. The decal has a green circle with two triangles in the center, one pink and one black. It reads LGB SAFE PLACE. Some of the people who display the decal are lesbian or gay, while others are supportive of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender individuals.
The LGB decal signifies the displayer's willingness to be supportive of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people. LGB Safe Place Programs have been established at various universities throughout the country. The intended message of the symbol is that the person displaying this decal is one who will be non-judgmental, under- standing and trustworthy should anyone need help, advice or conversation.
Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people may face instances of homophobic harassment on campus or in their communities and may wish to speak to a support- ive person about this. Gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people may be con- fused about sexual orientation or identity or just want to speak to someone about life issues that they face because of their sexual and affectional orientation. Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people may have fears about coming out and wish to speak to someone about those concerns. Individuals may not have accurate information about the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities or any role models that meet their needs as a gay, lesbian or bisexual people. The basic assumption of the program is a belief that people can be resources for each other.
The most important thing is that you will encounter a person you can talk to who is non-judgmental, understanding and trustworthy. Good listening and support can be expected. The creation of a sense of safety can contribute to a sharing of feelings and learning about lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. Your discussion will be confidential. If you're speaking about a problem you've encountered at MSU, you can expect a person in a Safe Place to help you find out what to do about that Iroblem. If needed, you can obtain names of resources on campus and in the community for emotional support, legal advice, health services and social contact, md information about organizations in the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities.
The individual whose office you are visiting will not be your counselor. There will be no pressure to take action or change your life or lifestyle. There will just be support.
The LGB Safe Place Program was established at MSU in 1997. The program is ,ponsored by the Gay and Lesbian Faculty and Staff Association of MSU (GLFSA) and the Student Development and Campus Life Division of the Office of the Dean of Students. It was announced to the campus community on National Coming Out Day and its existence has been publicized through campus publications and the Office of Student Services. In addition to providing support to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people on campus, this program also educates the campus about the prob- lems of homophobic harassment and the needs of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people for support and inclusion. It is part of GLFSA's efforts to reduce fear, prejudice and discrimination on campus by fostering a safe and comfortable environment for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students, faculty and staff.
The pink triangle was used by the Nazis to label gay men and the black triangle was used to label lesbians (and other "anti-socials"). These symbols have been adopted as symbols of LGB identity, pride and self-esteem. The area bisecting these triangles represents the diversity of sexual "minorities" which includes bisexuals. The inter- connectedness of human sexuality is thereby represented. The green circle, the opposite of the familiar red circle with a slash, signifies the displayer's willingness to be supportive to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. It also represents the inclusion of straight allies of these communities.
For more information, please contact Amie MacMath or Marie Cascarano.