Post submitted by Criss Ruiz, HRC Field Organizer
Dallas Pride kicked off festivities last weekend, with a host of exciting events around the Dallas/Fort Worth area. On Friday, The Dallas Resource Center launched their very first Transgender Pride, celebrating and honoring the trans community. Dallas-area transgender rights advocate Jayla Wilkerson organized the event and speakers included Jess Herbst, the openly transgender mayor of New Hope. I had the privilege of speaking about HRC's work to defeat anti-transgender legislation in Texas this year and how the community in the Dallas/Fort Worth area could continue to be involved. Later that evening, the HRC Dallas/Fort Worth steering committee held an event to welcome new members, engage the community and discuss upcoming elections and exciting events like the Dallas Black Tie Dinner.
On Saturday, I joined HRC's Dallas/Fort Worth volunteers at the pride festival at Reverchon Park to speak with thousands of festival-goers about HRC's work and sign up new members. That night, I had the opportunity to meet with the Dallas leadership of The Trevor Project, which provides crisis intervention and suicide prevention for LGBTQ youth.
Sunday was the last day of Dallas Pride, featuring a parade. HRC Dallas/Fort Worth volunteer leaders Linda Reyes, Mary Hart and Samuel Sanchez led the strong HRC contingent. I loved handing out beads and stickers and our volunteers appreciated the cheering crowds and the individual thanks they received while marching. At the end of the parade, I noticed across the street a church with a sign saying "All Are Welcome". With each step forward, I was reminded of everything we are fighting for and the progress we are defending.