How to be an Ally

Being an ally is the best thing you can do to support your LGBTQ friend or loved one.  It’s quite simple, really:

Affirm. Let your lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or queer (LGBTQ) family members and friends know that you love them just as they are.

Learn. Educate yourself about the issues that LGBTQ individuals and families face in your community

Teach your children that LGBTQ is simply another way people are made.

Be open about your LGBTQ friends and family (with their permission!). Secrecy breeds shame.

Respect. When you’re talking with LGBTQ folks, use the pronouns and relationship titles that they prefer. Ask them if you’re not sure.

Interrupt if you hear someone making an anti-gay comment or joke. Let them know that you don’t agree or approve, and why.

Recognize that being LGBTQ is not new. The many contributions of LGBTQ folk to society throughout history are only now coming to light.

Encourage open and honest discussion of LGBTQ issues in your home, workplace, and church. Help your community organizations and businesses to be open and affirming.

Speak up. Write or email your elected officials to protest anti-gay legislation and to support pro-gay or equal rights legislation.

Stand tall with those who believe that discrimination against anyone is a crime against humanity.

Join PFLAG Portland and support those who are working to end discrimination against LGBTQ people.

Breath! Being an ally can feel overwhelming. Don’t feel you have to be perfect; we’re all learning. Just keep moving forward!

If you’d like to know more about becoming an ally in your private, public, or business life, visit thePFLAG Straight for Equality Project website.

This guide will help you understand how straight allies fit in the effort to achieve equality for all. Learn more about what it means to be a straight ally and get some great tips and tools to being more supportive of your LGBT friends, family, and colleagues.