Two LGBT speakers addressed the DART board Tuesday as part of an ongoing effort to get the transit agency to offer offer domestic partner benefits for employees.
LGBT community members have been speaking at every DART meeting since the board voted to delay discussion of DP benefits until after a Supreme Court ruling on the Defense of Marriage Act later this month.
Felipe Gutierrez, representing Equality Texas Foundation, addressed the board and used a study done by Equality Texas on the attitude of Texans toward the LGBT community to try to convince DART to add partner benefits.
Oliver Blumer, representing the Transgender Equality Network of Texas, said he began by telling board members, “I hope you have some place in you heart,” but ended by saying, “Your inaction illuminates your privilege, prejudice and discrimination.”
Blumer said he couldn’t tell if any of the board members heard a word he said, referring to them as a bunch of male, pale, stale old men. He said their reaction was mostly blank stares.
“What are you going to wait for next?” Blumer told the board. He suggested they might wait for the Employment Non-Discrimination Act to pass Congress, which would provide them with plenty more time.
Resource Center Dallas spokesman Rafael McDonnell also attended the DART meeting and has been coordinating speakers for DART board meetings. Anyone who would like to speak should contact McDonnell.