(August 11, 2021) GLAAD, the world's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) media advocacy organization, is highlighting how this year's historic number of out LGBTQ athletes repeatedly stood up for the community during the Tokyo Games. A record 182 out athletes participated this year, up from the previous record of 56 out LGBTQ athletes at the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro. Many of this year's medal winners and historic-first athletes spoke out or issued statements after competing that specifically pointed to being LGBTQ, serving as role models in the community, and calling for acceptance and inclusion.
GLAAD published a blog citing just some of these transformative speeches, social media posts, and press statements. Together, the athletes highlighted by GLAAD offer a model of diversity and inclusion in sports, and the core ethos of the Olympic Games: the world's most driven and talented athletes representing their communities with pride.
- Team USA swimmer Erica Sullivan dedicating her swim to the "girls, gays, and theys"
- Canadian soccer player Quinn becoming the first out trans Olympian to compete
- Filipino boxer Nesthy Petecio calling on the LGBTQ community to "fight!"
- And so many more
Read the full list of highlights: www.glaad.org/blog/how-out-olympians-used-tokyo-games-platform-lgbtq-acceptance .
GLAAD's Olympics work this year also includs publishing a coverage guide for journalists, alongside partners Athlete Ally and Pride House Tokyo, that helps reporters cover LGBTQ athletes fairly and accurately and avoid perpetuating myths around transgender athlete participation.
Read the guide "Covering LGBTQ Athletes at the 2020 Olympics and Paralympics:" www.glaad.org/sites/default/files/GLAADOlympicsMediaGuide.pdf .
GLAAD also collaborated with Outsports to create a list of some of the most impactful moments for LGBTQ visibility at the Tokyo Games, including the six out LGBTQ athletes selected to represent their home countries as flag bearers during the Opening Ceremony.
In separate coverage, Outsports noted that if Team LGBTQ were a country, it would have placed 7th at the Olympics in total medals won by nationmore medals than any single nation that criminalizes homosexuality. In total, 56 out LGBTQ athletes won at least 32 medals.
GLAAD looks forward to highlighting more inspiring out LGBTQ athletes at the upcoming Paralympics, which run August 24th through September 5th this year, and at the 2022 Winter Olympics next February.
GLAAD rewrites the script for LGBTQ acceptance. As a dynamic media force, GLAAD tackles tough issues to shape the narrative and provoke dialogue that leads to cultural change. GLAAD protects all that has been accomplished and creates a world where everyone can live the life they love. Follow GLAAD on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.