HRC president urges community to work harder, more strategically
The LGBT community must work harder and more strategically than ever before, and the community must be prepared for "the last dying gasp [of] attacks from the right," Human Rights Campaign President Joe Solmonese warned during a recent appearance in Dallas.
Solmonese was the keynote speaker at the Dallas/Fort Worth HRC Federal Club’s quarterly luncheon, held Feb. 28.
Solmonese told the approximately 250 people attending the luncheon that last November’s election, which put Barack Obama in the White House and even more "fair-minded" people in Congress, gives the LGBT community many new opportunities to advance equal rights.
Solmonese said HRC will use those opportunities to promote marriage equality, to work on getting taxes removed from domestic partner benefits and to work on getting same-sex couples covered under the Family Medical Leave Act. He told his audience he is confident that passage of a fully inclusive Employment Non-Discrimination Act and hate crimes act will happen in the near future.
Solmonese also highlighted HRC’s organizing efforts across the country to promote and protect LGBT equality, and he noted that HRC trained several hundred Texas activists in the grassroots training program Camp Equality and deployed the participants to key campaigns across the state in the 2008 election cycle.
Solmonese said HRC staff and interns worked with several Texas legislative candidates and that significant contributions were made to several successful campaigns through the HRC Texas Families PAC.
The program was the first of DFW Federal Club’s 2009 quarterly luncheons. Founded in 1987 by 49 area residents, the DFW Federal Club was the first HRC Federal Club in the nation and is still one of the largest and strongest, according to a spokesman for the organization.
This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition March 13, 2009.