Human Rights Campaign, Tennessee Equality Project Call on Belmont University Officials to Halt Anti-

by Admin

University Officials Fire Lesbian Soccer Coach and Say No to GSA

Washington-The Human Rights Campaign, the nation's largest civil rights organization working to achieve lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) equality, and the Tennessee Equality Project, Tennessee's only statewide organization dedicated to the protection and expansion of the rights of LGBT Tennesseans, today call on Belmont University officials to stop discriminatory practices at the University. Friday, word broke that Lisa Howe, the university's women's soccer coach was fired after revealing to her team that she and her partner were expecting a baby. University officials had denied Howe permission to share this information with her team, but she chose to share her joyful information against their objections and was dismissed from her position shortly after doing so. Over the past year, Belmont University officials have also twice blocked the creation of a Gay/Straight Alliance (GSA).

"Discrimination in any form is wrong." said HRC President Joe Solmonese. "In a university setting, we should be teaching students tolerance, not bigotry. Students should know families come in all forms. Belmont University officials should celebrate the coming childbirth of one its employees, not punishing her for it."

"Belmont's actions are disappointing." said TEP President H.G. Stovall. "As the mission statement reads, 'Belmont University is committed to honoring diversity in our faculty, staff, administration, and our student populations.' Belmont has failed to provide for the diversity that it claims to honor."

Belmont University is a Christian-affiliated university. The U.S. Constitution protects the right of religious institutions to make decisions based on their faith traditions. That doesn't mean this kind of discrimination has to happen. HRC calls on Belmont University officials to become end these unjust practices.

The Human Rights Campaign is America's largest civil rights organization working to achieve lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality. By inspiring and engaging all Americans, HRC strives to end discrimination against LGBT citizens and realize a nation that achieves fundamental fairness and equality for all.

The Tennessee Equality Project is Tennessee's only statewide organization dedicated to the protection and expansion of the rights of LGBT Tennesseans. Learn more about TEP athttp://www.tnep.org/

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