Laramie County Community College hosted the first Safe Zone training of the year on Sept. 29. Zeke Sorenson, student life division coordinator, led the training with three faculty attendants.
Nate Huseman, LCCC english instructor and LGBT+ ally, said the Safe Zone trainings are held to create an inclusive environment for members of the LGBT+ community and its allies. Huseman added that the training seeks to ultimately educate individuals on LGBT+ issues. The Safe Zone training takes a look at LGBT+ issues by discussing diversity, inclusion and acceptance.
Safe Zone is open to all students and faculty who are interested in learning LGBT+ issues and they can sign up online at http://www.lccc.wy.edu/services/safezone. Trainings will be held once a semester for four hours at a designated time. After the attendants complete the training, they receive a laminated Safe Zone logo that identifies that person as an ally, and they receive a certificate that shows they completed the training. Faculty members can place them on their office or desk.
“It basically means that it is a judgment-free zone.” Sorenson said.
According to Karen Reynolds, administrative assistant of the Arts and Humanities and LGBT+ ally, a group from the University of Wyoming presented the Safe Zone program around a decade ago but it did not take off.
Huseman and Reynolds took interest in reviving and updating the program here at LCCC and developed the training and its materials.
Huseman explained that most institutions have a form of the Safe Zone program, and LCCC needed to revise and revive its program for today’s changes in the LGBT+ community.
“It’s all about creating an inclusive environment,” Huseman said.