Doyle Center LGBTQ posters disappearing

The Doyle Center provides a safe zone and a series of events that encourage the University of Wisconsin-Platteville students to talk about gender and sexuality.
Recently, an email was sent out to faculty by the Doyle Center informing of systematic removal of posters regarding lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning events on campus and the removal of gender neutral bathroom signs. According to the email, the posters were replaced with the following words,

“Are you LGBTQ? Supporting the Syrian Refugees puts your rights at risk,” and included a quick response code that would lead to a xenophobic website. UW-Platteville Fellow of Gender and Sexuality Clare Forstie encourages students who see offensive posters to notify the Doyle Center and also report it to the Ubit system so that the university can see what is happening.

“What bothers us at the Doyle Center is that it’s anonymous,” Forstie said. “It’s up to students to decide what they want to do [with the posters]. They can create counter posters to say how that’s wrong. Taking down the posters is never the way to go.”

The Doyle Center puts on events that are LGBTQ friendly. Taking down the posters makes the university seem to be less of a safe place. For sophomore Uriah Severinsen, this is one of the first times he has seen homophobia on campus.

“I don’t understand why a human would hate another human,” Severinsen said.

In order to make Platteville aware of the issues in the LGBTQ community, members are conducting safe-zone training for local businesses. Often times, LGBTQ members only know of spaces that are accepting by word of mouth. Forstie hopes that more local businesses will go through the training and be able to put some sort of sign up to help show that their business is a safe place to be, similar to the way UW-Platteville does with the safe zone triangle stickers.

“More than one in ten people are gay, that was a statistic that was found ten years ago,” Severinsen said. Not all LGBTQ people are the same and that is something that needs to be communicated. Like in any other friendship, individuals have to make the connection within the community and be constantly learning.

The Doyle Center welcomes everyone and is open from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m., Monday through Friday and is located in Warner Hall.

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