National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Weekly Update
July 8, 2008

In the News:

Academy for Leadership and Action coming to Michigan and Florida
Participants at Many Stories, One Voice Conference to remember
      those lost in tragic fire 35 years ago
Colorado rolls out the rainbow carpet of welcome
      to Creating Change 2009
OutSpoken Blog: Put the B back in LGBT
Check out media highlights in Task Force in the News


 

Academy for Leadership and Action coming to Michigan and Florida

The Task Force Academy for Leadership and Action — a premier leadership and skills development academy for the LGBT rights movement — will be hosting diverse training sessions in Detroit, Mich., and Miami, Fla.

On July 10, at the Alliance for Non-Profit Management Conference in Detroit, Mich., the Academy for Leadership and Action will host a training session for practitioners working with social movement organizations focusing on diverse communities. For more information, please contact Task Force Director of Capacity Building Lisa Weiner-Mahfuz at lmahfuz@theTaskForce.org or at 202.639.6325.

On July 26–27, the Academy for Leadership and Action along with Fairness for All Families, Florida Red and Blue and Safeguarding American Values for Everyone (SAVE) will host a training session on how to recruit a team of volunteers, talk to voters and coordinate large-scale actions to urge Floridians to vote No on 2 this November. Amendment 2 is a proposed constitutional amendment that would ban same-sex marriage, civil unions and possibly domestic partnership benefits for both gay and straight couples. To register, please contact Task Force Senior Field Organizer Becca Ahuja at rahuja@theTaskForce.org or at 202.360.8327.



 

Participants at Many Stories, One Voice Conference to remember those lost in tragic fire 35 years ago

Many of the hundreds of pro-LGBT Christians who will converge Sept. 4–7 in New Orleans, La., for the Many Stories, One Voice conference will revisit the site of a devastating fire that killed 32 people at a local gay bar known as the Upstairs Lounge. Conference attendees will also be able to participate in a jazz funeral to commemorate the 35th anniversary of one of the most tragic fires in New Orleans’ history.

“This jazz funeral will give participants at the conference an opportunity to both grieve and remember those killed in the Upstairs Lounge fire. But it will also give participants the opportunity to grieve and remember all of those whose lives have been lost to injustice or oppression and those who have fought the good fight.”
— Rev. Rebecca Voelkel, Institute for Welcoming Resources and Faith Work Director

[ Read the full press release ]
[ Learn more about the conference ]


 

Colorado rolls out the rainbow carpet of welcome to Creating Change 2009

The Colorado Host Committee for the 21st National Conference on LGBT Equality: Creating Change, recently hosted a Denver-area fundraiser to kick off the host committee’s work to roll out the rainbow carpet of welcome to all attendees at the upcoming Creating Change Conference.

Mayor John Hickenlooper, Denver’s pro-LGBT leader, regaled the crowd and announced his full support for the conference, which will be held Jan. 28–Feb. 1, 2009, in Denver. The event raised $1,800 for the host committee’s scholarship fund to make the movement’s most unique annual skills and strategy conference accessible to youth attendees from Colorado. Special thanks to Chris Meza and Brian Jacobson who opened their home for the event.

Photo: Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper, host committee co-chairs Hope Wisneski and Gus Spheeris, Task Force Movement Building Director Russell Roybal and host committee co-chair Anthony Aragon.

[ Learn more here ]


 

OutSpoken Blog: Put the B back in LGBT

In our OutSpoken Blog, Task Force intern Chrysanthe Tan reflects on the importance of bisexual visibility, as well as working to create an LGBT movement that is not only bi-inclusive but “affirming of a broad range of sexual and gender expression.” Her project at the Task Force includes creating a Bisexuality Resource Kit for LGBT community centers with the goal of helping these centers become more bi-friendly and bi-inclusive.

“It is important to treat the issue of bisexuality as an issue of significance, because so many people disregard it. Some people ask me why I am so specific about maintaining the bisexual label, especially when dating people, as if my being open about my attraction to other genders would make me less faithful — it doesn’t. I think it is essential to insist on the label, because otherwise, it would disappear,” writes Tan.

[ Read the full post ]


 

Check out media highlights in Task Force in the News

Read the latest media coverage about the work of the Task Force. This edition includes stories related to marriage equality, the appointment of Rea Carey as our new executive director, a response from the Task Force National Religious Leadership Roundtable to a new challenge put forth by Anglican conservatives and an op-ed from Task Force Board Member Hans Johnson about the importance of labor, Latino/a and LGBT voters this election cycle.

[ Read Task Force in the News ]


 

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