HRC Blog

DADT Repeal Heats Up in Virginia Beach

Repeal-DADT-Now-banner_600 VA DADT Organizing April 15We just wrapped up another in-district lobby meeting. Area service members and allies had the chance to speak with Senator Webb’s Virginia Beach staff about why they support repeal of "Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell." The greater Hampton Roads area is heavily military in nature, so I imagine this district office is accustomed to hearing about the issues that service members and their families face. Our attendees spoke passionately about why their experiences led them to support repeal. We had a chance to debrief and chat afterwards about the upcoming Voices of Honor event in Norfolk. Check out the group photo with Virginia’s tallest building in the background – the Westin Virginia Beach Town Center. Today’s meeting comes on the heels of another in-district meeting we held on Tuesday in Falls Church. Four Northern VA veterans told their stories and I think made quite an impression on the staff. We had a Vietnam veteran, a recently retired veteran who spent 21 years in the armed forces, and one woman who left the military because of "Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell." Her story of feeling alone and isolated, unable to discuss her long term relationship with her partner was so moving and highlighted just how damaging DADT can be on a mental and emotional level. VA DADT Organizing April 13 004I’m off to Richmond where I’ll be meeting with some student activists at Virginia Commonwealth University about how they can help with our upcoming Richmond Voices of Honor stop. I can only hope that it will be as successful as my take action meeting on Monday with student activists at Mary Washington University. As you can see from the photo of that meeting, students across the Commonwealth are stepping up to do their part! I’ll be in Richmond for a few days, so if you want to meet up and help with local repeal efforts just shoot me an email at terry.mcguire@hrc.org On the road again… VA DADT Organizing April 13 001

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