Post submitted by Eric Cameron, HRC Digital Media Specialist

Growing up in Alabama, Gio regularly heard in Sunday School that being gay was a sin.

After years of internal struggle, Gio was able to move out of a place of isolation and despair and into the joyful understanding that he was created just as God wanted him to be. Alabama is still home, and through the act of sharing his story, Gio has opened his door to more conversations about self-acceptance and LGBT equality than some might have expected in the South.

That’s the power of sharing your story. This summer as part of HRC’s Summer of Conversations, folks across Alabama, Arkansas and Mississippi are hosting conversations with their friends, neighbors and coworkers about issues of equality. We know from experience that Americans are much more likely to support equality when they know LGBT people. Changing hearts and minds often happens one conversation at a time.

Watch Gio’s story below:

This summer, join Gio, Fergus, Patricia and others across the South as we begin the conversations we need to move equality forward. HRC will provide you with all the tools and resources you need; all we ask is that you get the conversation started!

Learn more at

You can also click here to watch our videos from Arkansas and Mississippi.

Don't miss a post

Sign up for RSS feeds

Have a news tip?

Share it with us

Community discussion

Read the guidelines