by Daniel Lawrence Smith, Senior Development Manager | This impassioned plea, by Harvey Milk, was recorded with the instructions that it be played upon the event of his assassination. Today, we honor Harvey’s legacy on the anniversary of his birthday, Harvey Milk Day.
Thirty-five years after his death, the voice of Harvey Milk resonates with resounding clarity and foresight. At Out & Equal Workplace Advocates, we believe that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) professionals must be able to come out of the closet to bring their most authentic and productive selves to work. That is why we are committed to ending employment discrimination for LGBT employees.
Harvey Milk envisioned a day when we all share the same civil rights in our lives and our workplaces. Please join us in honoring Harvey’s vision for equality by supporting the work of Out & Equal.
The reality is that millions of LGBT employees across the nation and around the globe are forced to conceal their sexual orientation and gender identity or risk putting their career on the line. In countries like Spain and France, workplace climates are so conservative that being “out at work” could mean being “out of a job“.
In the United States, it is still legal to fire someone simply for being gay, lesbian or bisexual in 29 states across the country and 34 states for being transgender. The Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) which has, once again, been introduced to Congress, would create fully inclusive national legislation to protect LGBT employees.
Now more than ever, we must continue to educate, build allies, strengthen our Regional Affiliates and be a visible resource for those most at need against prejudice and unjust workplace treatment.
The voice of Harvey Milk lives on within each of us. We believe that Harvey would be proud of the many advances our community has made toward this vision, but he would also remind us not to be complacent – we still have a lot of work to do. And of course, we have hope!
Please join us on Harvey Milk Day with your generous gift of support. Together, we can share Harvey’s message of hope as we work to achieve a world free of discrimination for everyone.
P.S. For more on ENDA, listen to our Town Call Series recording Moving Forward on the Federal Non-discrimination Act. While you’re visiting the Out & Equal website, please honor the legacy of Harvey Milk with your tax-deductible donation.