Joe Biden has delivered a powerful, urgent message of positivity and hope to America’s embattled LGBT+ youth.
The president of the United States recorded a message for the It Gets Better Project, which shared inspiring stories of hope with LGBT+ youth.
“Hi everybody,” Joe Biden said in the pre-recorded video message. “If you’re a young person in the LGBTQ community and you’re going through a tough time right now, I want you to know a few things.
“First, I’m proud of you for being who you are, for being true to yourself. I want you to know that you’re not alone – your president has your back, and lots of other people do as well.
“Second thing I want you to know: that it will get better. Trust me. Whatever bullies say about you, it’s never about you, it’s about them. You’ve got a bright future ahead because you have the strength and courage they’ll never possess.
“Third, my administration – the Biden administration – will always stick up for you. We are committed to advancing equality in the classroom, on our sports fields, at work, in our military, in our housing, in our healthcare system, everywhere, equity.”
Joe Biden thanked LGBT+ youth for being themselves
Biden went on to note that his administration has appointed LGBT+ people in senior roles, name-checking Pete Buttigieg and Dr Rachel Levine, who respectively serve as secretary of transportation and assistant secretary for health.
“Wherever or however you seek to contribute, in school, at work, in public service, you belong,” Biden said.
“Remember, it will get better. Thank you for being who you are. God bless you.”
The president’s message comes after a turbulent few months for America’s LGBT+ community. Numerous anti-LGBT+ bills have been introduced in state legislatures across the country, including a ban on affirming healthcare for transgender youth in Arkansas.
Others states have implemented bans on trans athletes competing on teams that correspond with their gender identity.
Biden also marked Pride Month at the beginning of June with a formal proclamation that saw him reference the significance of the 1969 Stonewall riots.
“Pride is a time to recall the trials of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) community has endured and to rejoice in the triumphs of trailblazing individuals who have bravely fought – and continue to fight – for full equality,” Biden said in the proclamation.
“Pride is both a jubilant communicable celebration of visibility and a personal celebration of self-worth and dignity.”
He went on to note that the LGBT+ community has achieved “remarkable progress since Stonewall”, but acknowledged that queer people still lack protections in many states.
Biden also drew attention to the epidemic of violence against transgender people – particularly transgender women of colour – in his speech.