On February 28 and March 1, more than 200 organizers from 8 Southern states will converge in Asheville, NC, for the 1st annual LGBT* in the South conference.
The Campaign for Southern Equality is excited to partner with the Hart Law Group and the National Center for Lesbian Rights on the conference. Co-sponsors and organizations are participating by running an amazing line up of trainings during the conference.
Join us for a day of FREE hands-on workshops and panel discussions about LGBT advocacy and organizing in the South.
FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 28th: The sessions will focus on LGBT law and are designed for attorneys; legal professionals; service providers; staff/leadership of LGBT* organizations. FRIDAY IS NOW FULL AND REGISTRATION IS CLOSED.
SATURDAY, MARCH 1st: The Saturday portion of the conference will feature 14 separate trainings and interactive panels designed to build skills and allows organizers working in the South to learn from each other and connect. SATURDAY TRAININGS ARE OFFERED FREE TO ALL. Pre-registration is closed, but if you wish to attend on Saturday, you can register on Saturday morning starting at 8:15 a.m.
*Saturday registration and check in are required for all attendees* in the atrium of the First Congregational UCC in downtown Asheville (20 Oak Street).
The organizations participating in the conference include:
The Hart Law Group, National Center for Lesbian Rights, Equality Federation, Equality Florida, First Congregational UCC of Asheville, Freedom to Marry, Gender Benders, Human Rights Campaign, Lambda Legal, National LGBT Bar Association, Marriage Equality USA, South Carolina Equality, Western NC Citizens for an End to Institutional Bigotry, the ACLU of NC, Freedom Center for Social Justice’s LGBTQ Law Center, Planned Parenthood of North Carolina, Utah Pride Center, Unitarian Universalist Church of Asheville, Southerners on New Ground, Western NC AIDS Project, WNC Community Health Center’s Transgender . . . → Read More: Southern LGBT Organizers Gather at 1st Annual Conference
This Saturday, I’ll be joining upwards of 20,000 people in Raleigh, NC, for the Moral March, led by Rev. Barber and the NC NAACP. In what is shaping up to be the largest march in the South since Selma, we’re seeing folks coming in from 32 states to stand with North Carolina.
The entire CSE Team will be marching, along with a broad coalition of hundreds of organizations that are advocating for the most vulnerable residents of North Carolina.
I’m asking you to hop in your car, get to Raleigh and join us at the Moral March.
For folks outside of North Carolina, the Moral Monday movement may be new to you. During the last seven years, Rev. Barber has created an extraordinary movement to call for fair, just policies in North Carolina on issues like voting rights, reproductive rights, public education, health-care, the environment, immigration, and LGBT rights.
Right now, regressive policies are hurting people in North Carolina – causing more children to live in poverty, cutting HIV treatment programs that have proven effective, eroding voting rights, restricting access to reproductive health care, and treating LGBT people as second-class citizens. The list goes on and on and this is why we’re marching.
I’m asking you to join us because this is a movement in which we stand together and have each others backs. Rev. Barber has made sure that LGBT people and issues are a clear, visible part of this movement and I’m grateful for his prophetic leadership – his insistence that we stand together and refuse to be divided along lines of faith, class, race, gender or sexual orientation.
I hope the messages of love and respect for LGBT . . . → Read More: March With Us!
Our push for full equality for LGBT individuals and families in the South is moving full speed ahead. With your support, 2013 has been a year of momentum – and results. We’ve mobilized people all across the South – from the Gulf Coast of Mississippi to the Piedmont of North Carolina – to stand up and tell our country a new story about the urgent need for full LGBT equality in all spheres of life – employment, housing, health care, family rights and marriage.
The country is listening. In November, Time Magazine listed North Carolina as a marriage equality battleground state because of the WE DO Campaign. Putting the South on the map as winnable territory was one of our goals when we started our work two years ago. We will continue the fight against unjust and immoral laws like Amendment One.
Now, we need your help. Until midnight Tuesday, we’re competing in a national fundraising contest. If we finish strong, we can win up to $15,000 for our work in 2014. Can you make your year-end, tax-deductible gift to CSE right now?
We run a lean, nimble campaign and promise to stretch every dollar we raise to the max. Below are a few of our 2013 initiatives, all of them fueled by your support:
- During July, CSE offered FREE legal clinics in Gulfport, Hattiesburg, Jackson and Tupelo, Mississippi so that LGBT individuals could complete an Advanced Mississippi Health-Care Directive with the assistance of an attorney. In total our legal clinics this year resulted in 239 LGBT individuals’ completing Health Care Power of Attorney Forms (for free!) so that their medical choices will be respected in emergency situations.
(Bob and Jon create the first public record of a legally-married LGBT couple in Rowan County, . . . → Read More: Results
Amy Evans is a playwright from North Carolina who lives in New York City and is an incredible champion of CSE’s work as an ally. On Sunday, she’s literally going the extra mile – 26.2 in fact! – by running the New York City Marathon to raise funds for CSE. Amy’s already raised more than $1,700 and is nearing her goal of $2,620. Pushing for full LGBT equality in the South is its own kind of marathon and we’re so inspired by folks like Amy who are stepping up.Here’s more from Amy about why she’s running. Join us in cheering her on! - Jasmine
I got a really nice message from a friend who said that running a marathon is a brave thing to do. On my run this morning – an easy pace in Central Park, crisp blue sky, birds, squirrels, all that was missing was Bambi – itoccurred to me that there is nothing brave at all about marathoning. Vain, maybe. Self-indulgent by all means. But brave? About as brave as buying new lipstick.
Here’s brave: Walking into a county courthouse in the South with your life partner and requesting a marriage license, knowing the odds are stacked against you and that you’ll probably be denied. And then doing it again. And again. And again. That takes courage. But more than courage, it takes commitment, community, and a firm belief that we have the power to end injustice if we choose to. That’s what the Campaign for Southern Equality has been up to lately in the state of North Carolina. And at the same time they’re looking now for a local elected official in the South who openly shares the view that laws disenfranchising LGBT folks need to be stricken from the books once and for all.
Now the best thing about . . . → Read More: Going the distance with CSE
Brenda and Carol have spent 25 years together in a committed relationship and raised 2 kids. They seek the right to marry in their home state of North Carolina. On October 15 they will apply for a marriage license for the 4th time in Buncombe County as part of the WE DO Campaign.
Brenda and Carol remain hopeful about being granted a marriage license, saying “We are simply asking for the same rights that other straight couples in North Carolina enjoy. We are hopeful that Drew Reisinger, as the Buncombe County Register of Deeds, will consider approving our marriage license application in light of what has occurred in other states in regard to marriage equality.”
Please send Brenda and Carol a message of support here.
Two years ago this week, LGBT couples first applied for marriage licenses as part of the WE DO Campaign. You can watch couples call for rights in this video, including Brenda and Carol.