National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Weekly Update
April 3, 2008

In the News:

Task Force Action Fund playing critical role in efforts
      to block California anti-marriage measure
California commentary: Running the perfect play to win equality
Overwhelming response to Task Force’s roll call
      recognizing women leaders
New York Leadership Awards this Monday — get your tickets now


 

Task Force Action Fund playing critical role in efforts to block California anti-marriage measure

The Task Force Action Fund has donated $70,000 to support Equality for All, which has launched a statewide campaign to stop the “Limits on Marriage” initiative from qualifying for the November 2008 ballot. The Task Force has sent three additional field organizers from the East Coast to join our five California-based field organizers to help coordinate work in targeted regions throughout California. If passed, the initiative would change the state Constitution to permanently ban same-sex couples from marrying. Proponents of the discriminatory measure are working furiously to gather the necessary 700,000 valid signatures by the April 28 deadline. Many of those collecting signatures are being paid to do so.

Every day in six cities across the state, staff and volunteers are going toe to toe with these signature-gatherers at retail areas to ask shoppers not to sign the initiative petitions. In just over a month, Task Force organizers have worked with staff from other national and state organizations to help build a phenomenal team of 2,073 volunteers who have convinced 34,855 shoppers not to sign the petitions.

Photo: Task Force organizers train volunteers in Palmdale, Calif., before heading into the field to ask shoppers to decline to sign the “Limits on Marriage” initiative petitions.

[ Get involved in Equality for All ]
[ Read our California Updates for full details ]


 

California commentary: Running the perfect play to win equality

“Never in a million years did I think that my elementary, middle and high school basketball ‘career’ would prepare me in so many ways for my life as an organizer. My nickname back then was ‘Lil’ Bit.’ Today, I prefer ‘Mr. Campaign Manager, Sir.’

“For the last 35 days, I’ve had the great pleasure of serving as the regional organizing coordinator for the Equality for All campaign in San Diego. Basketball metaphors abound. I have what one might call the ‘Dream Team’ of staff organizers and volunteers. ... And, like a well-run team, folks take on their tasks, run their ‘plays’ and execute the myriad complex components of this campaign with finesse, hard work and phenomenal attention to detail.”
— Sarah E. Reece, Organizing & Training Project Director

[ Read the full commentary ]


 

Overwhelming response to Task Force’s roll call recognizing women leaders

Lesbian, bisexual and transgender women leaders abound! OK, we knew that, which is why we recognized many of these amazing figures throughout Women’s History Month in our Web profiles. But it’s been incredible to hear from you: Dozens and dozens of names have been submitted to our new online roll call honoring lesbian, bisexual and transgender women since we invited the public to begin submitting names last week.

From judges to artists to executive directors to environmentalists, these women are leading the way in a number of diverse fields. See our ever-growing roll call here.

Want to submit a name to the roll call? Include the woman’s name, organizational affiliation, a sentence describing her leadership (feel free to include a link to a bio), her organization’s Web site (or an article that might describe her work), and e-mail your submission to OutSpoken@theTaskForce.org.


 

New York Leadership Awards this Monday — get your tickets now

Online ticket sales for the 2008 New York Leadership Awards close at noon this Sunday, April 6, but sales of the $150 cocktail standing-room-only tickets will continue at the event this Monday, April 7. The 2008 New York Leadership Awards is poised to be the social event of the season! Held at the fabulous New York Times Center, this year’s gathering honors New York Gov. David Paterson (pictured), filmmaker John Waters and the National Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce, with performances by the legendary Debbie Harry and Miss Guy. And this just in — our guests can enter a raffle for two roundtrip tickets to anywhere in the continental U.S. courtesy of Delta Airlines, and a complimentary weekend stay at any W Hotel in the nation.

[ Get your tickets before it’s too late ]


 

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