Dear Colleagues for a United ENDA:
Greetings from the Nation’s Capitol. Since our last update, many of us had an amazing opportunity to get together and talk about an inclusive Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) at the Creating Change conference held last month in Denver, Colorado. We see such incredible momentum for positive change around the country and in Washington. It was wonderful to see so many friends and colleagues and to talk about our ability to make a difference. So much work is being done across the country to build towards passage of an inclusive ENDA, and that is exactly what is needed. Please take the lead in congressional districts in your state.
Positive Signals from Congressman Frank on Inclusive ENDA
In a recent interview with the Washington Blade, Congressman Barney Frank (D- Mass. 4), acknowledged the fantastic work being done to advance the work of an inclusive ENDA at the grassroots level, noting “the various coalitions” and the fact that “transgender groups are doing what wasn’t done previously, which is lobbying member by member.”
For the full article visit : http://www.washblade.com/2009/1-23/news/national/13969.cfm
The January 12, 2009 edition of The New Yorker featured a profile called “Barney’s Great Adventure,” which said “Frank is uncharacteristically hopeful about the future, including gay rights. Then it quoted Congressman Frank saying: ‘We’re going to do three things in Congress… First, a hate crimes bill-that shouldn’t be too hard. Next we move on to employment discrimination. We almost got that through before, but now we can win even if we add transgender protections, which we are going to do. And finally, after the troops get home from Iraq, gays in the military. The time has come.”
Your efforts make a huge difference on Capitol Hill. Keep up the good work!
White House Supports Fully Inclusive ENDA
What a change on Inauguration Day! When President Obama took office, the LGBT civil rights agenda that had been at change.gov was quickly uploaded to whitehouse.gov.
Right there, for the world to see, is this priority:
Combat Employment Discrimination: President Obama and Vice President Biden will work to …pass the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, to prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity or expression.
The new President is not just on board with a plan to protect the entire LGBT community in the workplace, his Administration is leading the way. Let’s put this bill on President Obama’s desk to be signed, shall we?
Grassroots Call to Action
As we move toward the introduction of ENDA in this 111th Congress, we need to build momentum from the grassroots, as well as keep the lobbying effort strong in Washington. On every front, we must convey to Congress and the White House our community’s strong commitment to passage of a bill that covers both sexual orientation and gender identity. Please use the tools available at unitedenda.org to call and set up meetings with your U.S. representative and senators today, and take a diverse team from your district with you. We need every one of us, as organizations and as individuals, to ramp up efforts in every congressional district. Do not wait to be asked, please contact your senators and representatives today!
More Detail On Inclusive ENDA Activities At The Creating Change Conference
For those who want to know what you missed at the Creating Change conference there was a day-long institute called “It’s Time to Pass an Inclusive ENDA;” a workshop “ENDA for All,” and a United ENDA coalition organizing meeting for those able to make it. Both returning and new activists committed to passage of an inclusive ENDA had a chance to get the latest news from Washington, brush up on new skills, reestablish ties with other coalition allies, and recommit to this important work.
If we are reaching you for the first time with this update because your organization joined the United ENDA Coalition in Denver, we welcome you.
Let Us Know About Your Key Efforts
If you have information that you believe should be included in this monthly update, please send it our way. And please let us know if contacts for your organization change, so we are sending updates and alerts to those who need them.
In deep appreciation for all that are doing to ensure that an inclusive ENDA becomes law, we remain,
Yours in solidarity,
United ENDA Steering Committee Co-Chairs
National Center for Transgender Equality
1325 Massachusetts Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20005
Julie Anne Childs
Assistant to the Executive Director
National Gay and Lesbian Task Force
1325 Massachusetts Ave, NW
Washington, DC 20005
Main Line: 202-393-5177
Direct Line: 202-639-6302