A Look Back at Our Incredible Progress in 2012
December 31, 2012 by Chad Griffin, President
As 2012 draws to a close, it’s important to get a full sense of the incredible progress LGBT equality made this year. For the Human Rights Campaign, 2012 was a year of unprecedented mobilization, groundbreaking initiatives, exciting new partnerships, and historic victories. We couldn’t have done it without you. So as we prepare to carry our momentum forward to 2013, take a minute to remind yourself of just how much we were able to accomplish together this year.
When 2012 was just beginning and national attention was still focused on which anti-LGBT Republican Presidential candidate was leading the pack on a given week, HRC was already proudly supporting President Barack Obama’s re-election. And at the same time we were ramping up our national campaign efforts, we were also focusing our attention on the states—helping to lead efforts on the ground to pass marriage equality bills in the Maryland, Washington and New Jersey legislatures. Though the bill was vetoed in New Jersey, the message we sent was loud and clear: 2012 would be a decisive year for committed and loving lesbian and gay couples.
On my first day on the job as HRC President back in June, we released our groundbreaking survey of 10,000 LGBT youth. It brought renewed attention to the need to combat bullying and negativity in our schools, within our faith communities and from our elected officials. HRC is firmly committed to the idea that we all share a responsibility to call out anti-gay rhetoric, and that’s why we ramped up accountability campaigns focused on equality’s adversaries like the ridiculously-named National Organization for Marriage.
Our trailblazing Healthcare Equality Index and Corporate Equality Index continued to drive inclusivity in healthcare and the workplace in 2012. The HEI saw a 162% increase in healthcare facilities designated as “Leaders,” and for the first time a majority of Fortune 500 companies reported gender-inclusive nondiscrimination policies to the CEI. We also released the inaugural Municipal Equality Index, the first-ever rating of LGBT inclusion in towns big and small.
By the time election season was drawing to a close, HRC had already committed unprecedented resources to victories across the country. HRC’s members and supporters raised and contributed more than $20 million to advance equality at the ballot box, and we deployed 70 staff to the field to guarantee victory. We even brought in Brad Pitt as backup. In the end, we won a clean sweep. We stood up for marriage in Maryland, Minnesota, Maine and Washington. We helped send Tammy Baldwin into the Senate and a record number of LGBT people to Capitol Hill. We stood up for an impartial judiciary in Iowa and existing marriage equality laws in New Hampshire.
And, of course, just this month the U.S. Supreme Court announced it would hear landmark challenges to the discriminatory Defense of Marriage Act and California’s Proposition 8 next year.
That’s not everything, but I’ve run out of space. Click here to see it all. Thank you for everything you brought to the team this year. We couldn’t have done it without you. Bring on 2013 and full equality.
Happy New Year.
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