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LAST WORD

“I see your true colors And that’s why I love you So don’t be afraid to let them show Your true colors … are beautiful Like a rainbow.”

T

Cyndi Lauper

he Brooklyn-born, Queensraised writer of Kinky Boots cites her sister, Ellen – who is lesbian – as her inspiration and role model. A longtime LGBTQ+ activist, her 2005 song ‘Above the Clouds’ celebrates the memory of Matthew Shepard, who was beaten to death in Wyoming because he was gay. And she devoted her 2005 tour to spreading the message of the Matthew Shepard Foundation.

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Moved by the plight of homeless youth – LGBTQ+ young people are 120% more likely to become homeless than their peers – she launched the True Colors Fund (now True Colors United) in 2010. “When we saw this homeless situation, which is – you know the statistics, right? There are up to 1.6 million homeless kids and up to 40 percent are LGBTQ+ – you feel like, well, what the heck’s going on? You realize that you’ve got to do more.

DIGITAL EDITION

You’ve got to educate people, you’ve got to reach out to the kids.” She established the True Colors Residence in 2011, a 30-bed facility in Harlem, which provides shelter and support for vulnerable young people, and True Colors Bronx opened in 2015. Lauper was Grand Marshal of NYC Pride in 2012, and returns this year to perform at the World Pride opening ceremony on June 26, along with Whoopi Goldberg and Chaka Khan.

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W42ST Issue 54 - The Pride Issue  

Inside: How to be a true ally, understanding intersectionality; the facts about PrEP, the podcasting exes, The Cher Show, God's Love We Deli...

W42ST Issue 54 - The Pride Issue  

Inside: How to be a true ally, understanding intersectionality; the facts about PrEP, the podcasting exes, The Cher Show, God's Love We Deli...

Profile for w42st