Fighting for Equality, Together – Pride 2021 at NextRoll

This year, Pride celebrations continue to look a bit different, given the global climate, but the goal of representation, reflection, and action within the LGBTQ+ community and with allies is as alive and vibrant as ever. 

And although Pride evokes colorful, glitzy celebrations, it’s also an important time to acknowledge and take action on many issues that continue to widen the equality gap for the LGBTQ+ community.

As of April, 33 U.S. states introduced more than 100 bills this year that aim to restrict the rights of people who identify as transgender. The Human Rights Campaign says this makes 2021 the worst year for anti-LGBTQ legislation in recent history

“Bills that have become law so far this year range from making it a felony to provide transgender youth with life saving health care to banning transgender girls from participating in sports to erasing LGBTQ people from school curriculum to granting broad licenses to discriminate against LGBTQ people. This crisis cannot be ignored and necessitates concrete action from all those with the ability to speak out,” said Alphonso David, Human Rights Campaign President.

In light of this continued fight and the need for allyship and support, RainbowRoll – NextRoll’s employee resource group focused on empowering and supporting LGBTQ+ Rollers, community members, and allies – is stepping up for the trans community and fundraising for trans youth in the U.S. and Europe throughout Pride Month. 

To keep the Pride spirit alive and this message top of mind with Rollers around the world, RainbowRoll has several events planned throughout June to engage Rollers – and friends, families, business partners – and inspire impactful actions and conversations. 

And it wouldn’t be Pride without some fun! So even though this year’s NextRoll events are virtual, rainbow threads and flashy fashion are highly encouraged for those who love to observe Pride with extra color!

Here are some ways we’re celebrating throughout June:

Pride Month Fundraiser

RainbowRoll is collecting donations during the month of June for GLSEN, a U.S.-based nonprofit with the mission of ensuring every member of every school community is valued and respected regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression.

RainbowRoll is also fundraising for LGBT Ireland, a nonprofit providing support, training, and advocacy to improve the lives of LGBTQ+ people across Ireland.

Donations will be accepted throughout June via Venmo.

“PRIDE” Documentary Discussion

On June 10th, RainbowRoll will host a virtual discussion of the documentary “PRIDE,” which is currently streaming on FXNOW and Hulu. The group will discuss the first three episodes of the documentary that chronicles the struggle for LGBTQ+ civil rights in the U.S. from the 1950s through the 2000s. Rollers are encouraged to bring topics, questions, and conversation starters! Free 30-day subscriptions to Hulu are available for those who don’t already subscribe.

Speaker: Michael Dumlao

The following week, Michael Dumlao, author of the upcoming book Wisdom of Guncles: Living Life from a Queer Perspective (to be released in August), will join the NextRoll team to host a discussion on the role of the “black sheep” in disrupting, defying and defining tradition, how recovering lost histories can help us design a better future and the ever-evolving nature of family and community. 

Virtual 5k – June 18th 

Grab your running shoes or hop on your bike, and recruit a workout partner, because RainbowRoll’s virtual Pride 5k is on June 18th! Get some exercise while supporting the LGBTQI+ community, and snap some photos along the way to share with the NextRoll group. Use the hashtag #NextRollCelebratesPride21, when you post on social media. 

Drag Brunch & Bingo Fundraiser

Wrapping up Pride month on a high note, NextRoll’s third annual Pride Brunch is full of fun! This year, Drag Queens will join Rollers for a sure-to-be epic game of virtual BINGO.

We’re also using the end-of-month event to remind Rollers and others about the charities we’re fundraising for, and RainbowRoll will announce how many donations they’ve collected so far. 

Pride Month is a time to come together to celebrate and have fun, but also to also bring to light the issues facing the LGBTQ+ community around the world, so we can support one another and support solutions for future generations – no matter how they identify, who they love, or how they express themselves.

Learn more about RainbowRoll and our employee resources groups on the NextRoll website