HRC and Jonathan Van Ness Join LGBTQ Advocates on Capitol Hill for Fall Lobby Day

by HRC Staff

Post submitted by Viet Tran (he/him/they/them), former HRC Press Secretary

Queer Eye star joins up with HRC and its members and supporters to discuss issues of LGBTQ equality on Capitol Hill.

Today, HRC announced that Queer Eye’s Jonathan Van Ness will join the organization and hundreds of LGBTQ members and volunteers on Capitol Hill to meet with members of Congress and encourage support for issues critical to the LGBTQ community -- including calling for the U.S. Senate to pass the Equality Act to opposing the Trump-Pence administration’s discriminatory ban on transgender servicemembers.

“As the Trump-Pence administration continues its attacks on the LGBTQ community, it’s more important than ever for members of Congress -- from both parties -- to stand up for their LGBTQ constituents,” said HRC Government Affairs Director David Stacy. “The Human Rights Campaign’s fall Lobby Day provides a critical opportunity for our grassroots army of volunteers to make the case for pro-equality policies and legislation directly to the leaders who represent them in Congress. We are grateful to the nearly 76 participants who will make their voices heard, and to the lawmakers who continue to fight for the rights of their LGBTQ constituents.”

Participants will hold 124 meetings with Congressional offices to discuss issues critical to the LGBTQ community, including, but not limited to:

  • Calling the U.S. Senate to the pass the Equality Act, bipartisan legislation that would add clear, comprehensive non-discrimination protections for LGBTQ people to our nation’s civil rights laws. 
  • Opposing the Trump-Pence administration’s attempts to enact a discriminatory ban on transgender military servicemembers.
  • Support the PrEP Access and Coverage Act to expand the access to and affordability of PrEP to prevent transmission of HIV.
  • Supporting the FAMILY Act to ensure paid family and medical leave.
  • Supporting the Voting Rights Advancement Act to reauthorize a key provision of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

Jonathan Van Ness will also join HRC volunteers and members on Capitol Hill today. Van Ness, who is non-binary, is best known for his role on Netflix’s Queer Eye. His recently released memoir Over the Top: A Raw Journey to Self-Love, provides a powerful look into Van Ness’ journey to embrace self-love and acceptance. 

HRC’s Lobby Day is a critical cornerstone of the organization’s federal advocacy efforts in Washington. HRC’s staff work throughout the year to win support for pro-LGBTQ legislation, at all levels of government. This work is complemented by the HRC members and volunteers who were able to talk to and influence their representatives, both on Lobby Day and throughout the year. This critical constituent feedback can help convince members of Congress to take a powerful stance on LGBTQ issues, and advocate for their constituents.