Press

Reclaiming Moral Values: A Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Agenda for 2006

Date: 
November 10, 2005

MEDIA CONTACT:
Roberta Sklar, Director of Communications
media@theTaskForce.org
646.358.1465

Reclaiming Moral Values: A Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Agenda for 2006
A keynote address by National Gay and Lesbian Task Force
Executive Director Matt Foreman

Place: Oakland Marriott City Center, 1001 Broadway, Oakland, Calif.
Time: Friday, Nov. 11, 10:45 a.m.
Media availability: Noon until 1 p.m.
Register at 510.452.9133

Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender rights advocates respond to Task Force call to action; convene in Oakland to strategize and prepare for crucial 2006 mid-term elections

Unprecedented political and legislative attacks bring activists from every corner of the country to Creating Change Conference

OAKLAND, Calif., Nov. 10 — More than 2,500 lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) rights advocates are convening in Oakland, Calif., this week for Creating Change to strategize around the critical 2006 mid-term elections. National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Executive Director Matt Foreman, one of the gay movement's leading advocates and voices, will give a keynote speech, Reclaiming Moral Values: A Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Agenda for 2006, laying out the strategic blueprint for the national LGBT community as it faces the political challenges of the upcoming year.

The conference comes on the heels of the 2005 off-year elections, which saw anti-gay ballot initiatives in Texas and Maine. Maine voters rejected a conservative-backed proposal to repeal the state's new gay rights law, providing the LGBT community with a much-needed victory. In Texas, however, voters overwhelmingly approved a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage.

"It's time for our community to go on the offensive and to seize the moral high ground," said Foreman. "It's long past time for elected officials who take our money and get our votes to stop cowering and take a stand for us."

Creating Change is the premier — and largest — annual meeting of the national LGBT community, where the agenda for upcoming battles is set. The conference reflects the breadth and scope of diversity of the LGBT community and its supporters.

Highlights include:

Matt Foreman, executive director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, presents a keynote address, Moving Forward: A Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Agenda for 2006, on Friday, Nov. 11, at 10:45 a.m. Foreman will lay out a strategic blueprint for the national LGBT community as it faces the critical political challenges of 2006.

Faith & Spirituality: Gay and God are Not Antithetical: As the religious right continues to demonize LGBT people to make political gains, leaders from across the country and across the spectrum of American faith are coming together at Creating Change to shift the public dialogue on religion, values and the LGBT community. Faith-oriented workshops held through the week, and there will be a closing plenary featuring Rev. Dr. Yvette Flunder, founder and senior pastor of City of Refuge United Church of Christ in San Francisco, on Sunday, Nov. 13, 11 a.m.–1 p.m.

Racial Justice: A Critical Theme: LGBT people are facing unprecedented attacks, as the right wing attempts to divide the African-American and LGBT communities to keep them from working together on issues of justice and equality. Combating these divisive efforts and strategizing for racial justice is a key focus of the Creating Change, which includes a pre-conference People of Color Organizing Institute and conference-wide workshops on racial and economic justice. Plenary speech by Juba Kalamka, founding member of "homohop" crew, Deep Dickollective, known for his commentary on the convergences and conflicts of race, identity, sexuality and class in pop culture, on Thursday, Nov. 10, 8–9:30 p.m.

Bisexual Rights and Visibility: One of the nation's leading bisexual activists, Loraine Hutchins, will be a featured speaker at the opening plenary. An activist in many progressive movements, Hutchins helped put the B in LGBT as the co-founder of BiNet USA and co-editor of Bi Any Other Name: Bisexual People Speak Out. Hutchins is the recipient of a Creating Change Award, honoring her many years of activism to advance bisexual rights and visibility. Creating Change will also feature several workshops on bisexual issues, including a Bisexual People of Color Caucus, Bisexual History at Creating Change Conferences 1989–2005 and Bisexual Health: History and Contemporary Views.

Leaders attending and available for comment include:
Matt Foreman, executive director, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force
Helen Zia, author of Asian American Dreams: The Emergence of an American People
Lorri L. Jean, chief executive officer, L.A. Gay & Lesbian Community Center
Mandy Hu, author of a Policy Institute Report on the effects of Social Security reform on the LGBT community
Amber Hollibaugh, Task Force senior strategist and specialist on LGBT again issues
Evan Wolfson, executive director, Freedom to Marry
Mara Keisling, executive director, National Center for Transgender Equality
Ricci Levy, Woodhull Freedom Foundation & Federation
Loraine Hutchins, co-founder of BiNet USA and co-editor, Bi Any Other Name: Bisexual People Speak Out

For a full schedule, visit www.CreatingChange.org.

–30–

The mission of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force is to build the political power of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community from the ground up. We do this by training activists, organizing broad-based campaigns to defeat anti-LGBT referenda and advance pro-LGBT legislation, and by building the organizational capacity of our movement. Our Policy Institute, the movement’s premier think tank, provides research and policy analysis to support the struggle for complete equality and to counter right-wing lies. As part of a broader social justice movement, we work to create a nation that respects the diversity of human expression and identity and creates opportunity for all. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., we also have offices in New York City, Los Angeles, Miami, Minneapolis and Cambridge.