Todrick Hall grew up in the Texas panhandle and now his state is America’s deadliest place for trans people.
The multi-talented singer, songwriter, actor, director, dancer, choreographer is partnering with Skittles who has pledged $100,000 to the National Black Trans Advocacy Coalition, a Texas-based organization addressing the inequities faced by the Black transgender community.
Hall told PinkNews.
“I can’t stress enough that in my entire life growing up as part of the queer community, I never thought that I would see a day where a company like Skittles is talking about the trans community.
“I love that they are so willing to support this group, because I think they need it, they deserve it, and anything that I can do to help keep our trans community safe is something that I’m one thousand percent willing to jump off.”
Todrick Hall inspired pal Taylor Swift to speak out for LGBTQ equality and to use her voice for positive change. But Hall has a powerful voice of his own, and he’s keen to use it to highlight the Black trans deaths that are so frequently overlooked.
“A lot of news outlets are afraid to [report] it or it just isn’t important enough to them, or it isn’t ‘pop culture’ enough for it to matter.
And I think that this story is so important, the story that these people, these creative, gorgeous people have lost their lives because people didn’t understand them and because they were afraid of them.”
The Human Rights Campaign reports that this year transgender people are being murdered at the highest rate since their records began, with Black trans women most frequently targeted by violence and harassment.
“I mean, I grew up there, it obviously doesn’t make me feel great to be connected to all that is happening.
I think that the main reason why the numbers are so high there is because the Bible Belt is such a strong and powerful thing.
There’s this pressure in that state specifically, to be perfect, to not break rules, to not color outside the lines, to stay in inside a box, the conservative Christian Republican box.
And it’s something that causes a lot of pressure that I feel, that a lot of people from the LGBTQ community as a whole feel, specifically the trans community. People just don’t understand because their their mind hasn’t been opened to it.”
“I feel like Obama healed our country in a way that spread so much love, but the LGBTQ+ community has been marginalized for so long, and everybody feels so beat down and battered.
I think that right now we need everybody to use their voice, to use their social media, for positive change. And I also think we need to accept the fact that some people are just unaware, and we need to try to teach them as opposed to trying to fight with them.
I think they’d be more willing to listen to us if we lead with love and understand that certain people have not had these experiences. So their hate is coming from a place of ignorance.”
While Todrick Hall never expected to be backing Skittles in this fight, he sees genuine sincerity in this campaign and most importantly, the dollar bills, ya’ll.
As well as the National Black Trans Advocacy Coalition, Skittles has also donated $100,000 to GLAAD.
“This is the first company that I’ve ever worked with that has thought about that from the perspective of LGBTQ community. I really appreciate that because it is something that is forgotten in most major corporations
“They understand that these people are not just here during Pride month, they’re here all around and they need your help. They need your love. They need your support.”
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Most brands think that Pride only lasts for the month of June. I’m proud to partner with @Skittles to show that Pride lasts all year long and that my Black LGBTQ+ brothers and sisters deserve visibility and support beyond just June. That’s why we’re donating $100k to @blacktranscoalition #OneRainbow #ad
(Photo, Avalon; via Pink News)