Shane Shananaquet is a 16 year old Native American, transgender, gay male, living in a rural area of Southern Michigan. Shane lives in a single parent, low income home is a high school junior.
His intersectioning identities aside, he is a regular teenager; he enjoys music, hanging out with his friends, choir, and musicals. But his passion lies in advocacy for LGBT rights, especially in the area of LGBT Youth. Shane has spoken before the Michigan State Board of Education in support of safe and supportive schools for LGBT youth and was a Youth Ambassador for the Women’s March on Washington. He was a workshop presenter at the 2017 “Time to Thrive” conference, sponsored by the Human Rights Campaign, is a member of the Michigan Department of Education’s HIV Review Panel, and a member of the Michigan Organization of Adolescent Sexual Health (MOASH) MiCAH (Michigan Communities Against Hate) Coalition, which seeks to institute a statewide integrated program of services and training to reduce hate crimes against LGBTQ youth. In June 2017, he was the featured speaker on the steps of the Michigan State Capitol for the Michigan Pride rally, where he spoke of the importance of amplifying youth voices. His future plans include attending the ACLU Summer Institute Program and participating in the YouthResource program for Advocates for Youth.
Shane walks the halls of school every day to taunts of “kill yourself” and worse. Where many of us would have crawled into bed forever, Shane has chosen instead to stand up and fight. He says that he wants to stand up and speak out for those that can’t yet find their voices. He takes the hit in hopes of preventing the next kid from having to do it. Shane is truly a change maker. Shane is WOKE! This kid is going places and you will know his name, well.
We’re so happy to have Shane as a Youth Ambassador! Learn more about the program and sign up here!