“Handle Their Words With Care”
New poster campaign offers help when LGBT kids come out
TORONTO, Sept. 27, 2016 – A groundbreaking new poster campaign on Toronto’s transit system offers advice and support for parents who may be hearing the news that their child is lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT).
The advice is “handle their words with care,” and the support is offered by Toronto Pflag, a volunteer-run charity that is part of a world-wide Pflag network (originally known as Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays). Today Toronto Pflag is known as parents, families, friends and allies of Toronto’s LGBTQ community, and it offers a confidential support line (416-406-6378) staffed by parents who have been through the coming out process with their own children, as well as monthly support meetings at two Toronto locations.
“No matter how prepared you think you are, parents often inadvertently do or say the wrong thing. A child will have had years to process their sexual orientation or gender identity but as a parent you have only seconds to respond in that moment,” says Anne Creighton, President of Toronto Pflag. “We know that handling these moments with care can ensure the relationship between parents and their children remain intact.”
Created by local advertising agency J. Walter Thompson, each poster features words made out of delicate materials such as glass and porcelain, including “Mom, Dad I’m gay” and “Mom, I’m not a girl,” with the tagline “We’ll help you handle their words with care.”
The campaign includes 68 posters on subway platforms and more than 700 posters in buses, streetcars and subway cars for the four weeks leading up to National Coming Out Day on Oct. 11 – a time when LGBT students returning home from college or university often choose to come out to their families.
“The TTC is used by thousands of people with different backgrounds each day, so our message had to be clear first and clever second, especially to cultures where coming out may be a sensitive topic,” says Ari Elkouby, VP Creative Director at J. Walter Thompson. “Once we had the idea, we really pushed to bring it to life in a visually arresting manner that would literally stop people in their tracks.”
Pattison Outdoor provided the transit advertising spaces, and RBC sponsored the campaign production costs.
Media Contact: Jill Holroyd or Michael Ain at firstname.lastname@example.org
Poster images (Click here to view larger formats)