NFL launching initiatives throughout LGBTQ History Month

NEW YORK (AP) — The NFL has launched a series of initiatives associated with LGBTQ History Month, which includes National Coming Out Day on Sunday and Spirit Day on Thursday.

Included are a dedicated website (NFL.com/PRIDE ); a PSA celebrating former NFL players who have come out voicing support; expanded partnerships with GLAAD and The Trevor Project; a pride-themed NFL shield; and an assortment of LGBTQ content airing on NFL Network throughout October.

“The LGBTQ community is an important audience for our sport and a critical part of the NFL family,” said Jonathan Beane, the NFL’s chief diversity officer. “We continually strive to provide an inclusive and welcoming environment for all.”

The PSA that will debut Sunday will feature former NFL players Wade Davis, Ryan O’Callaghan, Ryan Russell and Jeff Rohrer. Current players Anthony Barr, Calais Campbell, Rob Gronkowski, Anthony Harris, Marlon Humphrey, DeAndre Hopkins, Jarvis Landry and Dalton Risner will offer their support for the LGBTQ community.

In an NFL.com op-ed, Troy Vincent, who overseas league football operations, discusses his commitment to fostering a welcoming and safe environment to active NFL players who are contemplating coming out.

On Thursday, the NFL will join the pledge to “go purple” to support LGBTQ youth in a united stand against bullying.

NFL PRIDE is an employee resource group that aims to heighten the visibility and celebrate members of the LGBTQ community across NFL offices and teams so that employees of all gender identities and sexual orientations can feel comfortable in the workplace. It also helps provide perspective and advises on league initiatives relating to the LGBTQ community and helps administer an advisory working group consisting of players, staff and advocacy partners.

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