Oakland, CA– Gay-Straight Alliance Network is now Genders & Sexualities Alliance Network. The national LGBTQ youth organization also unveiled a new tagline today: “trans and queer youth uniting for racial and gender justice.” In order to be more inclusive and more reflective of the youth who currently make up the organization, GSA Network, which was founded in 1998, announced its name evolution today.
GSA Network’s new name underscores its focus on all genders and sexualities. In addition, the tagline highlights the organization’s commitment to racial justice and its mission of developing youth leaders who advocate for safe and supportive communities. The decision to change the name and tagline was a youth-centered process, and the leaders of GSA Network engaged as many youth leaders and other stakeholders as possible in conceptualizing a new name for the organization. Genders & Sexualities Alliance Network will continue to be known and commonly referred to by the acronym GSA Network, and will continue to connect student GSA clubs across California and the country. The organization has published a guide to its name evolution with Frequently Asked Questions here.
Joint statement from GSA Network Co-Executive Directors Ginna Brelsford and Geoffrey Winder:
“GSA clubs have been a powerful force for societal change, and trans, queer and gender nonconforming youth have pushed the LGBTQ community and broader society to new understandings of identity formation. This name evolution acknowledges the ways in which LGBTQ+ young people already understand their sexualities beyond ‘gay’ and ‘straight’ and that their genders are not confined to a binary. We are excited to continue to serve LGBTQ+ youth in leading the next generation into a more just, diverse and expansive future.”
Statement from youth activist and GSA Network Board Co-Chair Sam Alavi:
“GSA Network has always been at the forefront of the LGBTQ movement; over the years, I have watched the organization evolve and change as the movement does. So it makes sense that the organization’s name is equally evolving to best represent its communities. Ask any of the youth leaders, and they’ll tell you that the work we do is no longer just about gay or straight identities.
The name change may take some time to get used to, but it gives the opportunity for GSA Network to continue to fight at all the forefronts of oppression, making sure no identity or community is left behind.”
GSA Network is a next-generation LGBTQ racial and gender justice organization that empowers and trains trans, queer, and allied youth leaders to advocate, organize, and mobilize an intersectional movement for safer schools and healthier communities. In California, GSA Network connects over 1,000 GSA clubs through regional summits and youth councils. Nationally, GSA Network leads the National Association of GSA Networks which unites 40 statewide networks of GSA clubs, and GSAs Unite, an online campaign and petition platform supporting youth organizers across the country.