Approximately 3.6 percent of the population in Ohio identifies as LGBTQ+, which means that LGBTQ+ and questioning students are present on our college campus, many of whom are in various stages of identity development and are in need of support. Moreover, homosexuality is an identity that is often invisible. The Safe Zone program asserts a visual statement of support to our lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ+) students. To see a partial list of other schools with an Ally & Safe Zone program visit the American College Student Personnel Association’s Standing Committee for LGBTQ+ Awareness.
- Increase the visible presence of LGBTQ+ allies and places that are ‘safe’ for LGBTQ+ students, staff and faculty across campus.
- Affirm that “Safe” as practiced in the program is the use of evidence-based and trauma-informed content to provide comprehensive student support.
- Have students, staff and faculty complete the session titled "LGBT 101" facilitated by the LGBT Community Center of Greater Cleveland.
- Have students, staff and faculty complete the session titled "Who Am I to Judge? Intersections of our Jesuit Catholic Mission and the LGBTQ+ Community" facilitated by the Theology and Religious Studies Department and Campus Ministry.
- LGBT 101 is facilitated by LGBT Community Center of Greater Cleveland
- Trans 101 is facilitated by OutSupport
- An Introduction to Parents and Families of Lesbians and Gays is facilitated by PFLAG Cleveland
- Who Am I to Judge? Intersections of our Jesuit Catholic Mission and the LGBTQ+ Community is facilitated by the JCU Theology and Religious Studies Department and Campus Ministry.
The Safe Zone series was developed and curated by staff in the Center for Student Diversity and Inclusion, with support from other university and external partners.
With the Safe Zone door decal, we hope to increase the visibility of their support. Allies have existed for a long time on campus … we’re just making this support loud and clear. Moreover, by directly addressing and attempting to reduce one type of bias, the campus is indirectly addressing and reducing other forms of bias at the University.
The reality is not all people on campus are supportive, knowledgeable, and understanding of LGBTQ+ people. While the University’s Statement on Diversity recognizes our diverse and vibrant community, it is important for LGBTQ+ persons to be affirmed regardless of their other social identities.
Is Safe Zone appropriate at a Jesuit university?
Yes. Students are educated at John Carroll University in the Jesuit tradition of cura personalis, the care of the whole person. Briefly stated, the mission of the University is “a commitment to a church within the world, serving the human search for truth and value, and for justice and solidarity.” John Carroll inspires individuals to excel in learning, leadership, and service in the region and in the world. To achieve this goal, the University creates an inclusive community where differing points of view and experience are valued as opportunities for mutual learning. Lastly, the University is committed to the intellectual, spiritual, emotional, and physical development of each student.
Programs like Safe Zone help to increase awareness and support for the LGBTQ+ community on campus. Many Jesuit Universities have Safe Zone programs, including Georgetown University, Santa Clara University, University of San Francisco, Boston College, and Loyola University Chicago. The Safe Zone program at John Carroll University was developed with input and support from campus stakeholders.
What is an ally?
In the most general sense, an “ally” is a person who is a member of the majority group who works to end oppression in their personal and professional life through support of, and as an advocate for, the oppressed population. Allies to racial, religious, a
What are the responsibilities of an ally?
Allies commit to foster a campus environment where homophobia is not tolerated and heterosexism is challenged. They continue to educate themselves on how to be an ally for LGBTQ+ people.
What are the benefits?
Safe Zone fosters the opportunity to interact and learn from one another in our diverse community. Allies make a difference on campus—even if they don’t see or hear it all the time. Allies live out the Jesuit mission by making a personal contribution to