Created to address the concerns of the Gender and Sexual Diversity community and their allies at Eastern Illinois University and the surrounding area, the Safe Zone Project is a way to reach out to these students and welcome them in all areas of the EIU community. Safe Zones are areas on and around campus where supportive people provide information and work toward the elimination of myths, misconceptions, and stereotypes.
By participating in the Safe Zone Program, you pledge that your Safe Zone is a place members of the Gender and Sexual Diversity community and their allies can:
feel comfortable and safe in a confidential environment.
express any issues and concerns in an atmosphere of acceptance and support.
access informational and educational resources including: organizations, phone numbers, web sites, and books.
Safe Zone Core is open to any student, staff, or faculty member who is interested in becoming an ally for the LGBTQA+ community, and learning more about gender and sexuality related issues. Topics that will be addressed include: GSD terminology, the coming out process, heterosexual privilege, facts and myths about the GSD community, the Riddle Homophobia Scale, and ways to engage in quiet activism. Completion of Core will result in becoming an identified Safe Zone Ally.
This one-hour brown bag focuses on asexuality. Briefly, an asexual person is someone who does not experience sexual attraction. The workshop will cover questions, such as
What does it mean to be asexual and/or aromantic? How do individuals experience asexuality different from one another?
What makes asexuality a distinct identity rather than a behavior (such as celibacy) or medical disorder?
How does asexuality overlap with and differ from other identities within the Gender, Sexual, & Romantic Diversity (GSRD) community?
What specific challenges and prejudices might asexual people face in a society that assumes all people are sexual?
How can we support asexual and aromantic students on Eastern’s campus?
The Beyond Bystander training complements the Safe Zone Core training taking a more thorough look at how to effectively advocate for members of the GSD community. This training will provide an interactive platform to assist in being a better advocate and ally for the Gender and Sexual Diversity community.
Bisexual and Pansexual Awareness discusses the misconceptions, myths and stereotypes concerning Bisexual and Pansexual individuals. This session will also educate participants on the differences, intersectionality of Bisexual and Pansexual identities and reflections on your own experiences.
In this session, the lives, works, and experiences of GSD African-Americans in history will be introduce to some and re-introduce to others. Significant times in history that will be discussed are the Harlem Renaissance, the Civil Rights and Black Power Movement, as well as, the contemporary Black Lives Matter Movement. Black GSM finding their “space” in white spaces like the Women’s and Gay Liberation Movements will also be a part of the discourse.
Were you taught the history of the GSD community in school? Most of us were not! This is an opportunity to dive into the past to better understand how we got to where we are now. Throughout this presentation the history of LGBTQA+ individuals in the United States and the history of GSD at Eastern Illinois University will be evaluated.
Queering Faith: The Bible is a training that takes an in-depth look at common verses in the Bible that are typically used to combat homosexuality. The historical context the verses were written in will be evaluated, and the translation of the verse will also be analyzed. This training addresses the complicated relationship between religion and sexual minoritized individuals.
Trans 101 is an interactive and exploratory presentation which reviews basic terminology, statistics, and best practices regarding the transgender umbrella. This presentation is truly a 101 and audiences can expect to leave with the proper building blocks in being a proactive ally.
Trans 201 takes an in depth look at transgender history and special topics such as: domestic violence, sexual assault, and health pertaining to the transgender community. This is a highly interactive and discussion based presentation that relies heavily on audience participation. Please note that Trans 201 does not cover terminology covered in 101.