On May 17, Chateauguay Valley Regional (CVR) High School’s Gay Straight Alliance did an “Instagram takeover” of the school’s account, as a way to highlight the significance of the day. It changed the profile picture on the account to a rainbow-coloured CVR Spartan logo, and spent the day sharing queer content for anyone to consume.
May 17 is the International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia (IDAHBT). It started in 2005 and was originally just focused on homophobia. In 2009, transphobia was added to the title, and finally biphobia was added in 2015. This day is recognized by over 130 countries.
Some of the content on the school account included a quiz about LGBTQ2SIA+ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, Two-Spirit, Intersex, asexual, plus) history, ranging from important events to facts about influential queer people such as Oscar Wilde and Emily Dickinson. It also promoted popular Instagram accounts of queer creators who work to help educate their audiences; these include people like Dylan Mulvaney and Schulyer Bailar, who use their massive platforms to educate folks on queer issues and experiences.
The final portion of the takeover featured quotes from former CVR students who were asked what it was like growing up queer, what they love about being part of the queer community, and what advice they may have for any queer students right now. They ranged from folks who graduated more than 20 years ago to those who did so just recently.
The takeover was well received by students. It provided some great context for IDAHBT: how far we have come, and how far there is still to go.