It Gets Better Project, Whisper and the Orlando Police Department Partner To Share Messages of Hope With The City of Orlando At Upcoming Pride Festival
(Orlando, FL) The It Gets Better Project, Whisper and the Orlando Police Department (OPD) are kicking off their LGBT community outreach by releasing an It Gets Better video featuring Orlando Police Lieutenant James Young. Lt. Young has been with OPD for nearly 20 years and was appointed by Chief John Mina to uphold the department’s promise to serve everyone with dignity and respect as the agency’s LGBT Police/Community Liaison.
After the Pulse Nightclub tragedy in June, the It Gets Better Project partnered with Whisper and asked Whisper users to send their messages of hope and support to the victims.
Thousands of responses were received from around the world. Together, It Gets Better and Whisper translated the best responses into postcards and posters — all different colors of the rainbow to share with the people who have been most affected by the tragedy.
The Orlando Police Department and the City of Orlando have disseminated these postcards to the Orlando LGBT Center and the Pulse Nightclub site and will continue to during the Orlando Pride festival on November 12th and beyond. A poster has also been sent to the City of Orlando to be featured in a permanent memorial that is being created in honor of the 49 we have lost.
“When confronted by unthinkable acts of violence and despair, the human spirit finds ways to lift and heal itself,” said Brian Wenke, Executive Director of the It Gets Better Project. “We are proud to partner with Whisper and the Orlando Police Department on this initiative to reach those who have been directly impacted by the Pulse nightclub tragedy. We hope the Whispers shared by concerned people from around the world will touch the hearts of every survivor and the loved ones of those we lost. It is so important for all of us to be reminded of the good in this world.”
“We are honored to partner with It Gets Better Project and the Orlando Police Department for this important outreach initiative, which perfectly aligns with Whisper’s mission of creating a more empathetic world,” said Joe Berg, Whisper’s Director of Communications. “We are particularly proud to see the Whisper community come out in droves to share these insightful and heartfelt messages of hope with those most affected by the devastating Pulse tragedy. We hope that these postcards serve as a reminder that love always trumps hate, and that compassion and support can always be found.”
“We are thrilled to partner with It Gets Better Project and Whisper — both to spread the Orlando Police Department’s message of inclusion and acceptance and to receive these heartfelt messages of support from so many in the wake of the Pulse tragedy,” Chief Mina said. “June 12 was a dark day for the City of Orlando; nothing can erase the pain we all feel at such a senseless and brutal loss of life. But these messages of love and support prove what we already know: No act of terror can defeat kindness, compassion and love.”
To send your own message of hope to those affected please visit: www.itgetsbetter.org/orlando
ABOUT THE IT GETS BETTER PROJECT
Launched by syndicated columnist Dan Savage and his partner Terry Miller, the It Gets Better Project is a 501©3 nonprofit organization that leverages the power of media to reach and provide critical support and hope to LGBTQ young people around the world. Through collaborative partnerships elevating positive portrayals of the LGBTQ community, the It Gets Better Project strives to communicate to LGBTQ youth that it gets better — and inspire the changes necessary to make it better for them. The It Gets Better Project received the 2012 Governor’s Award from the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences and has garnered support from President Obama and 500,000 others who have taken the pledge to share messages of hope and to speak up against intolerance.
ABOUT ORLANDO POLICE DEPARTMENT
OPD is a nationally recognized law enforcement agency that is focused on the safety of Orlando’s residents, visitors and businesses. The City of Orlando and the Orlando Police Department are committed to making sure that all members of the community are represented and have the same access to services. OPD is among the first law enforcement agencies in the country to appoint an LGBT Police/Community Liaison to uphold the department’s promise to serve everyone with dignity and respect.
Whisper is a leading media company based in Venice, California. Whisper’s mobile app is the largest online platform where people share real thoughts and feelings, forge relationships and engage in conversations on an endless variety of topics — without identities or profiles. Whisper content and stories reach hundreds of millions of people each month across platforms. Whisper is spearheading a movement that believes that happiness starts with being your real self.
Whisper is backed by venture investors including Sequoia Capital, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Thrive Capital, Shasta Ventures, Trinity Capital, and CAA Ventures. Whisper is available on iOS and Android.