HRC Blog

HRC Holds News Conference with Community Leaders in Jackson

This morning, Human Rights Campaign President Chad Griffin discussed the results of a bipartisan poll at a news conference at the Capitol building in downtown Jackson. The poll, commissioned by HRC, shows 58 percent of Mississippians under 30 support marriage equality. Support also is strong for workplace non-discrimination protections that would protect LGBT employees, with 64 percent of Mississippi adults saying they support such legislation. Currently, there are no laws that protect LGBT Mississippians from discrimination in the workplace.

“The future for equality in Mississippi is bright,” said HRC President Chad Griffin. “Our poll no doubt identifies areas where there are still hearts and minds to change, but the results confirm what we see nationwide, including here in the South: young Americans support everyone being able to marry the person they love. Fair-minded Mississippians from all walks of life also recognize that it’s wrong to fire someone simply because of who they are or who they love.”

Griffin was joined at the news coference by Jennifer A. Riley-Collins, Executive Director of ACLU-Mississippi; Amber Hammons, CEO of Mississippi Safe Schools Coalition, Leroy Clemons, Community Relations Director of William Winter Institute for Racial Reconciliation, Bonnie Allen, Development Director of Mississippi Center for Justice, David Dinielli, Deputy Legal Director of Southern Poverty Law Center.

The poll was conducted by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research, a Democratic firm, and Target Point Consulting, a Republican firm, from June 26 – July 9, 2013.

The poll, available at www.hrc.org/MSpoll, shows that strong majorities across age and demographics back workplace protections for LGBT people – including 56 percent of Republicans in the state. But 80 percent of residents, like those in other states, mistakenly believe it is already illegal under federal law to fire someone solely because of their sexual orientation or gender identity.

“For too many LGBT Americans – many living right here in Mississippi – our historic victories at the U.S Supreme Court last month were nothing more than a headline,” added Griffin. “We will not rest until every LGBT American living everywhere in this country enjoys full equality under the law.”

According to the Williams Institute, same-sex couples in Mississippi are more likely to be raising children than couples in any other state.

HRC President Chad Griffin signing the visitor's log in front of the governor's office in Jackson, Miss.

HRC President Chad Griffin signing the visitor's log in front of the governor's office in Jackson, Miss. Photo (c)Butch Dill/AP Images for Human Rights Campaign

Human Rights Campaign President Chad Griffin speaks to members of the media. Photo (c)Butch Dill/AP Images for Human Rights Campaign

Photo (c) Butch Dill/AP Images for Human Rights Campaign

Pictured (Clockwise from top left): Amber Hammons, CEO of Mississippi Safe Schools Coalition; David Dinielli, Deputy Legal Director of Southern Poverty Law Center; Karin Quimby, HRC Regional Field Director ; Adam Talbot, HRC Senior Writer;  Zachary Hasychak, HRC Senior Manager of Membership Outreach;  Jennifer A. Riley-Collins, Executive Director of ACLU-Mississippi; Chad Griffin, HRC President; Leroy Clemons, Community Relations Director of William Winter Institute for Racial Reconciliation. Photo (c) Butch Dill/AP Images for Human Rights Campaign

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