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Editorial: Monthly observances aren’t the only time to recognize marginalized groups

With the recent end of Women’s History Month and Pride Month approaching quickly, it is important to reflect on the real purpose of these months: advocacy and awareness.

While Instagram infographics and educational TikToks can bring attention to these important events, our allyship cannot stop there.

Many companies release rainbow-themed merchandise without fail during the month of June with messages of support and love. As soon as the clock strikes midnight on July 1, however, all of the supposed support disappears. Corporations shouldn’t profit from people’s identities.

During Black History Month, show support for diversity, but make sure that that appreciation is felt all year. Black people have to face discrimination and prejudice every single day of their lives, so we should support them throughout the year.

In addition to being Sexual Assault Awareness Month, April is also Deaf History Month as well as Autism Acceptance Month. As a reminder on how to observe these months, listen to members of those communities. For example, associating a puzzle piece with autism spectrum disorder furthers the harmful notion that it is something that needs to be solved, rather than simply a part of life.

These are only a few clear examples that illustrate why monthly observances should only be a partial reason why you decide to take action.

By showing support to marginalized and oppressed groups when it isn’t expected, you are going out of your way to understand these communities when it’s no longer trendy to do so.

When the filter is deleted, when the hashtag is dead and when stories are past their 24-hour mark, you still need to be an ally.

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