Post submitted by Logan Clark, Illinois field staffer.
Save the date: July 18th through the 20th, Americans for Workplace Opportunity (AWO) will be celebrating in Rockford for Pride. This is going to be a huge three day extravaganza of taking action and having fun. AWO will be working hard on the political action front to make sure that the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) moves to the front and center on the Congressional agenda. Our volunteers will be heading to Representative Kinzinger’s office in Belvidere to drop off all those postcards that we’ve been getting folks to sign and speaking with him and his team on ENDA. Then we’ll be getting our rally on to let our voices be heard, and finishing the weekend off with a nice Sunday picnic. More fun is getting planned by the great folks over at The Office Niteclub and a fully detailed schedule will follow soon.
This is will be a great occasion to celebrate how far we’ve come in Illinois, and to realize how far we still have to go to ensure the freedoms of every single American. With the passage of marriage equality going into effect June 1st, we need to remember that not everyone has it as good as we do in Illinois. Currently the number of states with marriage equality stands at 19. Unfortunately there are still 32 states that don’t fully protect the LGBTQ population in the workplace. In Pennsylvania, we have won the right to marriage equality, but we haven’t won the right to keep our jobs. That is why it is vital that we work harder than ever here in Illinois to pass ENDA. We need to protect good hard working Americans like Crystal Moore in South Carolina, who is a 20+ year veteran of her hometown police force, and was fired by a homophobic mayor for being openly gay. Without ENDA, folks like Crystal have no legal recourse against discriminatory and homophobic workplace conditions.