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Thursday, August 6, 2009

My Ninth Conversation 10 Months - 10 Lives Challenge

My apologies, this post was due in July.

Some of you may recall my previous posts on the 10 Month - 10 Lives Challenge.
Join The Impact says “Join us in a challenge over the next 10 months that will make an IMPACT.
10 months - 10 lives changed. Everyone in this movement must help keep the conversation going.
"We are asking each and every one of you to engage in 10 conversations with someone who does not understand our struggle and help them to see our point of view. We are not asking that you try to infringe on or disrespect their beliefs. Change can not occur with insult, it will only occur with respect. If all of us work hard to positively affect 10 lives, we can change this entire nation!"
If you missed my original posts, be sure to click on each to view them:
My 5th Conversation 10 Months - 10 Lives Challenge.
My 6th Conversation 10 Months - 10 Lives Challenge.
My 7th Conversation 10 Months - 10 Lives Challenge.
My 8th Conversation 10 Months - 10 Lives Challenge.
I thought I would share an email I received Wednesday. The Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgendered (GLBT) community is not only working for Marriage Equality. They are also working in many areas to reduce discrimination on the job (ENDA), working on hate crimes bills and working to repeal DADT. We have made great strides in finding supporters in Congress. Did you know:
In 29 states, you can be fired solely because you're gay
– and if you're transgender, that's 38 states.

Please take a moment to read this email from Equality Illinois. As you read it, think of what some of your friends, neighbors, relatives and people you've never met are going through in their job search today and those that are employed, how they are struggling to keep their jobs. Think of how tough the job market is. Put yourself in their shoes. In some states it is perfectly ok to discriminate based on sexual orientation and individuals lose their job every day because of it. An individual can be the most qualified candidate, but may be discriminated against because they are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgendered.
Shouldn't the most qualified person get the job?
Shouldn't they get to keep their job?

Dear Lola,

Equality Illinois applauds today’s introduction in U.S. Senate of Employment Non-Discrimination Act (“ENDA”).

The bill, which enjoys bipartisan support in Congress, would add sexual orientation and gender identity to existing federal employment non-discrimination laws and protect lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender employees from workplace discrimination. The bill was introduced by Senators Jeff Merkley (OR-D), Susan Collins (ME-R), and Edward M. Kennedy (MA-D).

Equality Illinois is pleased to announce the support of both U.S. Senators from Illinois. Senator Richard Durbin and Senator Roland Burris are co-sponsoring this bill. "Both Senator Burris and Durbin have long histories of supporting fairness and equality," said Rick Garcia, Director of Public Policy. "We are grateful to them and we look forward to their leadership in getting ENDA passed."

“The American Dream – that hard work is the key to success and opportunity – has no room for workplace discrimination.” – said Bernard Cherkasov, the organization’s Chief Executive Officer. “Hardworking LGBT Americans should not have to fear the loss of their jobs on the basis of their sexual orientation or their gender identity. When that day comes, America will have taken another step forward in assuring justice and equality for all.”

The State of Illinois leads the way in workplace protections, having enacted the law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity in 2005. Equality Illinois played an instrumental role in securing support of state legislators and the governor for that law. 11 other states and more than 100 localities across the United States also prohibit workplace discrimination on similar grounds.

Equality Illinois was founded to secure, protect and defend the civil rights of lesbian, gay bisexual and transgender Illinoisans. It is one of the Midwest’s largest gay civil rights organizations.

However, we cannot succeed without your support. There are 2 steps you can take right now to help us with our mission: please go to to donate now and please sign up your friends and family for our e-news.

Learn more about employment non-discrimination and about Equality Illinois at

Lola's Diner

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