Post Submitted by Alec Thomson, HRC Regional Field Organizer
This week, HRC joined our local partners in Arizona for the 2016 Equality Day at the Arizona Capitol. LGBT advocates from across the state came together to learn about issues impacting LGBT Arizonans and how to advocate for change at the state and local level.
Equality Day participants heard from State Senator Katie Hobbs about the challenges Democrats face in the Republican majority legislature. Republican Representative Kate Brophy McGee also addressed the group, emphasizing the importance of constituent contact and the need to educate Republican members of the legislature on LGBT issues.
Personal stories and struggles were also shared at Equality Day. For example, David and Kevin Patterson spoke about the endless roadblocks they faced trying to adopt their two daughters. Equality Day participants were also briefed on how to effectively communicate with legislators and the current state of LGBT Arizona.
With a deeper understanding of the issues facing LGBT Arizonans and the tools to influence the legislative process, participants took to the halls of the legislature to meet with members of the State House and Senate.
Equality Day was a great success. It strengthened the network of LGBT advocates in the state and furthered the momentum for equal protection for all LGBT Arizonans since Arizona is one of 32 that lack fully inclusive non-discrimination protections. Lobby Day demonstrated to legislators, Democrat and Republican alike, that the need for these protections is real and the fight will continue until all citizens of Arizona are protected equally under the law.