Post submitted by HRC Alabama Field Organizer Tori Wolfe-Sisson
On September 2, HRC Alabama will collaborate with direct service and non-profit organizations like Transgender Advocates Knowledgeable and Empowered (TAKE), AIDS Alabama and the ACLU of Alabama to hold an Equity Fair. The Equity Fair will include resources to legally change names, LGBTQ friendly businesses who are hiring and accepting applications, voter registration and reinstatement training as well as activist training from noon to 8 P.M Our goal is to bring together our coalition partners, volunteers and supporters, along with LGBTQ community members and allies, to empower them to become better advocates and closer communities.
In HRC’s 2015 State Equality Index (SEI), Alabama was ranked in the lowest-performing category: High Priority to Achieve Basic Equality. The SEI is a comprehensive state-by-state report that provides a review of statewide laws and policies that affect LGBTQ people and their families. Alabama was one of 28 states to receive this score.
States in this category have many laws that undermine LGBTQ equality, from those that criminalize HIV and sodomy, to measures allowing religious-based discrimination against LGBTQ people. An overwhelming majority do not have non-discrimination laws that include sexual orientation or gender identity protections; few have hate crime laws. LGBTQ advocates largely work on killing bad bills, and on passing municipal protections for LGBTQ people.
Alabama, for example, lacks explicit LGBTQ protections in the workplace, housing and public accommodations and is one of six states that have passed laws restricting the inclusion of LGBTQ topics in schools.
We hope that through this event and more like it in the future, we are able to solidify and build LGBTQ equality across the Yellowhammer State.
To learn more about the SEI, click here.