Laverne Cox urges the world to turn purple for Spirit Day

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American actress Laverne Cox has become one of the first celebrities to tweet their support for Spirit Day.

Cox, best known for starring in the comedy-drama Orange Is the New Black, said she was “taking a stand against bullying”.

Millions of people around the world wear purple in support of Spirit Day on 17 October, in order to speak out against bullying.

Observed annually since 2010, Spirit Day was created by Canadian teenager Brittany McMillan.

The initiative has also been championed by US LGBT media advocacy group GLAAD, which urges people to tweet about the day and turn their Facebook profiles purple.

The colour symbolises the “spirit” of the rainbow flag.

Users of Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and other networks can use an app to turn their profile pictures purple.

Twibbon allows users to easily update social media profiles to encompass Spirit Day.

Laverne Cox is the highest-profile transgender actress in the US.

She hit the big time in the Netflix original series Orange is the New Black, playing the ground-breaking role of “Sophia Burset,” an incarcerated transgender woman.

Cox was featured on the cover of TIME earlier this year, and was awarded GLAAD’s highest honour, the Stephen F Kolzak award, for her activism and advocacy work in April.