Queer Intersections Association sets goals for new year

Club aims to collaborate with CWS organizations, build community

Members+of+the+Queer+Intersections+Association+create+coloring+pages+and+buttons+at+their+meeting+Sept.+14%2C+in+the+CUB.

BECCA WALKER

Members of the Queer Intersections Association create coloring pages and buttons at their meeting Sept. 14, in the CUB.

SHANA HUANG, Evergreen reporter

WSU’s Queer Intersections Association provides a space for queer and trans students of color to build community and express themselves.

The organization campaigns for the respect and celebration of the interconnected identities of queer POC through storytelling, art and media, according to its website

This year, QIA has an entirely new team of officers, said QIA Chair Lannan Ruiz (they/them).

They said the team is in the process of restarting the organization after a period of inactivity during the pandemic last year. QIA’s other goals for the year include outreach and getting the word out that the organization is looking to have more students join the community.

“Our goal is to help provide a space for specifically queer people of color to have a safe space and an environment in which people understand how the intersectionality of being queer and also people of color is very important,” they said.

They said it is important to keep the club going and ensure everyone feels welcome walking through QIA’s doors. 

Ruiz said that as chair, they are an alternate for the Coalition for Women Students (CWS) senate and that QIA’s delegate, Anna Mitre, attends meetings once a week with CWS to present ideas and ensure that all other organizations within CWS are supported. As an alternate, Ruiz attends meetings in place of Mitre.

“One of my goals is to try and collaborate with every organization that’s currently active within CWS,” Ruiz said. “We want people to acknowledge our space on WSU’s campus and that it’s not just something people just go to — we are really creating a community and it’s going to take a long time to do that, but by making sure we make people feel safe here, we will continue to grow throughout the years.”

Arthur Kearney, QIA’s historian, said his biggest goal is to build a community where people can go to discuss their problems and meet others of similar backgrounds. QIA’s service to other communities is important to him, and the intersectionality of the organization enables people to talk about more specific issues.

“I wanted to be involved in the community in some way and to be able to make a positive impact in someone’s life, so hopefully I can do that using this position, helping others like me find a sense of community,” he said.

Alexis Pabon, QIA’s public relations manager, said the organization gives a space and voice to people of color so they can talk about their experiences being queer.

“For me, it’s definitely been really nice to just be around people who understand. For me, I think that’s very important, and I think it’s something that should be important for a lot of people,” he said. 

Pabon said coming to WSU and having a space with others like him provided him with a community that understands what he is going through. 

“It’s about having a community and possibly even in the future having a second family,” Pabon said.