Wednesday, June 12, 2019

We Need To Focus On Education

We all know how many states have protection for us, we know where we can pee in peace, but it turns out many non-LGBTQ+ don’t have a clue.
Americans' perception of LGBTQ rights under federal law largely incorrect:
By Maria Caspani
June 10, 2019

(Reuters) - Almost half of all Americans incorrectly believe that federal law protects lesbian, gay and bisexual people from discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, according to a Reuters/Ipsos opinion poll released this week.

A month ago, the Democratic-controlled U.S. House of Representatives passed the Equality Act, which would codify anti-discrimination protections for LGBTQ people in areas such as healthcare and housing into federal law.

But the bill faces stiff opposition in the Republican-controlled Senate and the administration of President Donald Trump, a Republican, opposes the bill on the grounds that it threatened “to undermine parental and conscience rights.”

Some supporters of the bill say the disconnect between the public perception and the actual protections afforded to LGBTQ people shows a need to drum up support for the legislation.

“The public might be getting the sense that we’re fully integrated in society and that we live a trouble-free life, and that is a challenge for my organization,” said Stacey Long Simmons, director of advocacy and action at the National LGBTQ Task Force, which works on behalf of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and other queer people.
First of all what the hell is “conscience rights?”

When I was interning at True Colors I tabled at the Channel 30 Wellness Fair that they held each year and when I was asked what our organization did and I said “True Colors is a non-profit organization that works sexual and gender minority youth.” When I mentioned “LGBT” I saw questioning looks on their face and some even asked “What is ‘LGBT’?”

Let’s face it we live in a bubble, if someone asked us how many states offer protects for LGBT people most of us could answer 20 and Washington DC. Or any other fact about trans rights and we talk it for granted but most people have no idea.

It is very rare to pass a non-discrimination law on the first time, why? Because we need to education the legislators, now it appears that we need to educate people about our federal protections.
The Reuters/Ipsos poll found that 45% of respondents believed federal anti-discrimination protections already exist for lesbian, gay and bisexual people, including 40% of those aged 18-34 and 57% of registered Republicans. Only 23% said they were not protected at the federal level.

Only one in three respondents knew that transgender people were not protected from gender identity discrimination under federal law. The rest either said they did not know, or they believed - incorrectly - that transgender people already had federal protections.
We have our work cut out for us.

So the question is; how do we educate them?

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