The Love is Love club and the Organization of Latinx American Students hosted “LGBTQIA+ Through a Different Lens,” an event designed for students to address their concern and personal stories of what life is like for those in the LGBTQ community living in households of a traditional nature. The event was held on Oct. 7 in the EndZone.
The event was held to provide a platform for students to share their different perspectives on their identities and discuss the importance of allying and vocalizing support when possible, according to junior Kaitlyn Camperlino, president of Love is Love.
OLAS proposed the idea for the event to Love is Love; both organizations wanted to dive into intersectional ties.
“OLAS were the ones who came up with the event and asked us to tie onto it, as it’s imperative to have both the intersectional ties of this event present for a good discussion,” Camperlino said. “This event ties into other LGBTQIA+ events because it’s considering LGBTQIA+ from a perspective that’s often unspoken of.”
Camperlino spoke about how Latinx LGBTQ students can have a very particular struggle between their identities of race and their sexual or gender identity.
“It’s important to recognize the marginalization of those who fall under two minority categories and to recognize the intersection that happens between them,” Camperlino said. “OLAS truly provided insight into LGBTQIA+ through a lens that helps show that your sexuality [and] gender identity isn’t just what defines you.”
Camperlino explained that events such as “LGBTQIA+ Through a Different Lens” are important for representation and progression toward a more accepting campus.
“These events are vital for the campus because Iona needs to move in the direction that our world is heading towards. Students who fall into intersectional identities of any kind deserve a place here and should have a form of representation,” Camperlino said. “By hosting events that allow for intersectional representation, we then show that more identities are represented on this campus.”
Love is Love and OLAS want students to walk away with having learned something important.
“The takeaway I hope people took from our event is what speaking up about your experience can do to create solutions,” Camperlino said. “If we treat our experiences like ‘the elephant in the room,’ then there is no way for someone to understand where we come from. Vocalizing your experiences can spark others to join the conversations that are uncomfortable to have.”