May 2013

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The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force builds the power of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community from the ground up. The Task Force is the country's premier social justice organization fighting to improve the lives of LGBT people, and working to create positive, lasting change and opportunity for all.

Find Out How the Minnesota Marriage Victory Was Years in the Making
Task Force Is Among the LGBT Groups Supporting Worker-Protection Amendments to Immigration Bill

Did you know that in 29 states you can be fired just because you're lesbian, gay, or bisexual? And you can be fired just for being transgender in 34 states. That's why we need the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) to pass this year. There are currently no federal laws to protect employees from discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. LGBT people should be protected from discrimination in the workplace. Tell your legislators to cosponsor ENDA so that no one will be fired or not hired for who they are or who they love.

Harold "Hal" Kooden (at right in the photo) has been a charter member of the Task Force since its inception. He says: "I began my gay activism in 1970 after Stonewall. Before that, I was involved in the anti-war movement and then the radical health and mental health movements. I was national coordinator of the Psychologists for Social Action (PSA), founded in response to the Democratic Convention in Chicago in 1968. While I was principally involved with PSA and coalition building with other radical groups, I also began working with the mental patients movement." Continue reading about Hal's long-time history with the Task Force here.
It's amazing how much things can change in only two years. In May, 2011, the Minnesota Senate and House passed a proposed constitutional amendment that would have denied marriage equality for same-sex couples. A poll claimed that most Minnesotans opposed this amendment, and that was proven when they voted against it — and for fairness — last November. Then in May, 2012, Vice President Biden came out for marriage equality, followed two days later by President Obama. Now in May, 2013, Minnesota joins 11 states and the District of Columbia in giving all their citizens the right to marry. Love really is greater than hate, and the events of this May confirm that.
We're very glad marriage equality is gaining momentum and seems to be sweeping the country. Rhode Island and Delaware gained marriage equality earlier this month! And then Minnesota moved into the win column on May 15. The Task Force is proud of its role in all these battles, and we're especially proud of the years we've spent in Minnesota. Maybe it's time to start an office pool on which state will become the 13th to move to the side of equality?
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