Human Rights Campaign Expands Arizona Staff, Endorses Kate Gallego & State Legislative Candidates

by HRC Staff

Post submitted by HRC Communications Temp Wyatt Ronan

Today, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) announced the addition of 4 staff in Arizona, bringing our total number of staff mobilizing voters in Arizona to 7 with just 53 days until the November 3rd election.

HRC is adding staff in key states across the country dedicated to mobilizing and turning out 1.7 million “Equality Voters” that will make the difference in elections for President, Senate, Congressional races and state legislative races across the state. HRC’s grassroots army builds upon the more than 600 endorsements made this cycle, a record for the organization.

HRC is also announcing the endorsement of Kate Gallego for re-election as Mayor of Phoenix, as well as Juan Mendez, Athena Salman and Melody Hernandez adding to the slate of 30 state legislative candidates the Human Rights Campaign has endorsed this cycle. This brings our organizing strength to bear in these key races in an effort to elect a pro-equality majority in Arizona. The state still has a patchwork of local protections for LGBTQ people without statewide anti-discrimination laws on the books. Today’s endorsement and investment marks the next step of our efforts to elect as many pro-equality allies as possible to leadership positions so Arizonans, regardless of who they are or whom they love, are treated equally under the law.

“We’re excited to announce our endorsement of Mayor Kate Gallego, Juan Mendez, Athena Salman and Melody Hernandez, important champions for equality and keys to advancing protections for LGBTQ Arizonans in the years to come. With their leadership in Phoenix, we are that much closer to delivering protections to the 242,000 LGBTQ Arizonans who still can legally be discriminated against without any statewide laws on the books,” said Human Rights Campaign’s Arizona State Director Bridget Sharpe. “Beyond today’s endorsements, we know that delivering a pro-equality majority in Arizona requires hard work, and that work can’t be done without investing, so we are thrilled to be increasing our staff presence on the ground in the home stretch of this campaign. By working hard, partnering with local leaders, and fighting for equality in this year’s election, we can and will deliver the meaningful change LGBTQ Arizonans need.”

"We are extremely grateful to the HRC for their endorsement!” said Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego. “Last year, Phoenix received a perfect score on the HRC's municipal equality index. We remain committed to creating and sustaining a safe, diverse, and inclusive city that celebrates its LGBTQ+ community."

HRC has also endorsed thirty seven state legislative candidates in Arizona this cycle.

In the 2018 midterms, HRC mobilized our grassroots army of 3.2 million members, supporters, and volunteers to work on behalf of pro-equality candidates and engage pro-equality voters primarily in six key states: Arizona, Michigan, Nevada, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. This unprecedented grassroots mobilization worked to recruit and train volunteers, register and mobilize voters and grow the organization's political organizing efforts in order to pull the emergency brake on the hateful anti-LGBTQ agenda of the Trump-Pence administration and elect a Congress that would hold them accountable.

In 2020, our engagement and mobilization efforts have only deepened. In addition to our expansive volunteer network, HRC has had significant full-time staff in seven priority states (Arizona, Michigan, Nevada, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Wisconsin) since 2017, and the organization is expanding our efforts with additional staff focused on a second tier of states. While in person organizing has been limited by the COVID-19 pandemic, HRC has embraced digital organizing, launching a new tool called TEAM allowing our broad network of volunteers and steering committees to engage their networks personally and conducted hundreds of virtual phone banks and text banks to engage pro-equality voters even without the ability to interact in person.

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