Wellness Center hosts lunch ‘Tea Time’ event

The event provides a safe space for Colton’s LGBTQ+ students to talk about their concerns and seek support


Tucker Bynum

Ms. Evelin Villa welcomes students to “Tea Time” at the Wellness Center.

Colton, CA—Colton High’s LGBTQ+ students received an opportunity in the Wellness Center Thursday during lunchtime to discuss issues of importance to them.

“Tea Time,” hosted by the school’s PRIDEful Club in conjunction with the Wellness Club, provided LGBTQ+ students a safe space to explore concerns surrounding coming out to family, friends, and community.

“We are doing this event to make our LGBTQ+ students and allies welcome and to bring awareness,” said Evelin Villa, Wellness Center coordinator. “By doing this event, we can see what we can do to support them.”

During Tea Time, LGBTQ+ students and their allies made an agreement not to out anyone on campus. The only exemptions to this involve matters of abuse, as educators like Villa are mandated reporters under California law.

“With the communities coming together, it means a lot,” said junior Melanie Acosta about the event.

“It’s a fun place to meet new people,” said sophomore Briana McMullen.

“Tea Time” is an expression of importance within the LGBTQ+ community. In the mid-20th century, in many communities, especially on the east coast, it was illegal for establishments to sell alcohol to known homosexuals. This led queer leaders to find alternative venues, many of which were not licensed to sell alcohol, to hold gatherings and dances. Thus “tea time” was born as a moniker for the queer community to discover a place free from judgement.