LET THEM EAT CAKE?

OPEN TO ALL?Our nation decided more than 50 years ago that when a business decides to open its doors to the public, that business should be open to all—a core principle that is at the heart of how we treat one another.

That principle is more important than ever in light of today’s decision. While the Court’s narrowdecision does not create a new license to discriminate, they sided with the baker who discriminated against a same-sex couple. The ruling pertained to the specifics of this case and did not undermine our nation’s core principle that businesses open to the public should be open to all.

“The decision by The Supreme Court on the Masterpiece Cakeshop was based on concerns unique to this specific case. It has reaffirmed the enduring law that states are able to protect its citizens from the harms of discrimination, including against LGBT people. We will continue to fight for these protections here in the Pelican State,” said SarahJane Guidry, Executive Director of Forum for Equality.

That’s why we are a part of the growing chorus of business owners, civil rights advocates, religious leaders, LGBT people and our friends, families and allies that are calling on businesses across our country, to pledge and declare their opposition to discrimination and open to all. It’s time for our state laws to catch up to our state values and protect all Louisianans from discrimination, so that no one can be fired from their job, denied a place to live, or turned away from a business simply because of who they are.

Businesses can join the movement here at home by becoming a member of 
Louisiana Equality Means Business. This is a project of the Forum for Equality Foundation that highlights employers in Louisiana that have adopted comprehensive non-discrimination policies and have demonstrated their commitment to valuing and including everyone. There is more information here: www.laemb.com. 

And you can join the movement as well as we build a state of equality here in Louisiana.You can find out how to join the movement here!

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Look at you, Louisiana!

What a momentous day for the City of New Orleans, and the great State of Louisiana! As New Orleans continues to celebrate its Tricentennial, we mark a new page in history with the first female mayor of one of nation’s greatest cities. We send our sincere congratulations to Mayor LaToya Cantrell on her first day.

Louisiana is making giant strides this year with three of our largest cities – Shreveport, Baton Rouge and New Orleans – now being led by black female mayors. Each of these mayors has worked to integrate equality into their cities, and we are grateful for their passion and conviction.

Mayor Ollie Tyler of Shreveport stood against the discriminatory Marriage and Conscience Act. And Mayor Sharon Weston-Broome of Baton Rouge hired an LGBTQ liaison and is continuing to protect LGBTQ parish employees from discrimination. We have seen the initiative of these strong female leaders from North to South Louisiana. And today, Mayor LaToya Cantrell joined them with a past of strongly supporting our community through initiatives such as the “Welcoming Cities” resolution. She has repeatedly emphasized that the main focus of her administration will be to double down on New Orleans’ reputation as a place of diversity and inclusion.

Almost thirty years after Forum for Equality’s founding, we can see that our voices are stronger together. The strength of these mayors and the boldness of their forward-looking agenda give us hope that Louisiana will one day be a state of equality for all.

 

With Equality,

SarahJane Guidry

Executive Director

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Show Your Love!

GiveNOLA Day is almost here! Tuesday, May 1st is a day where thousands of people like YOU raise critical funds for organizations across New Orleans. This is a perfect opportunity to get out and give to a fantastic organization. This year, I am giving to Forum for Equality.

By organizing and fighting back, Forum for Equality has proven — since 1989 — that they are standing on the right side of history. They would not be able to do work like this without your support.

Ways YOU can Give:

1) DONATE at www.givenola.org/forumforequality. You can schedule your gift now or wait till the big day. I know that $10 can go a long way; a gift of every size is appreciated!
2) CHEERS with us at Urban South Brewery on Tuesday, May 1st! Forum for Equality wants to treat all of their #GiveNOLA donors of $25+ to a local brewski. Click here for more information about our extra happy Happy Hour.
 
3) SHARE GiveNOLA Day with EVERYONE! Shoot a text to your friends inviting them to Urban South Brewery next Tuesday. Email your coworkers encouraging them to give to Forum for Equality. Invite your family members on Facebook to support equality.
 
Forum for Equality is leading the charge, but we need to be stronger all across Louisiana. Join us as we fight the good fight to bring equality to every corner of the Bayou State. Thank you for standing on the right side of history.
In Equality,
Samuel Bradley, Jr.
Forum for Equality Foundation, Vice-Chair
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#GiveNOLADay 2018

#GiveNOLADay is almost here! May 1st is a day where thousands of people like YOU raise critical funds for organizations across New Orleans. Schedule your gift to Forum for Equality at http://bit.ly/FFEGiveNOLA then join us for Forum for Equality’s extra happy Happy Hour at Urban South Brewery! Facebook event page HERE

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Your Senator Needs To Hear from YOU!

The Louisiana Employment Nondiscrimination Act (LENDA) is coming up for a vote in the Senate and Forum for Equality needs YOU!

All hardworking people should be treated fairly and equally by the laws of our state. Everyone should have the opportunity to earn a living and provide for themselves and their families, regardless of who they are or whom they love.

It is imperative that you tell your Senator right now that you support LENDA, because protecting people from discrimination, including LGBTQ people, is the right thing to do. Click here to send YOUR Senator an email of support for LENDA (SB 219).
We know that over 70% of Louisianans support workplace protections for the LGBTQ community. It is time for Louisiana law to reflect Louisiana values.

With Equality,
SarahJane Guidry
Executive Director, Forum for Equality

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Let’s Get To Voting, Y’all!

TOMORROW IS ELECTION DAY!

Make your plans to vote now. Election Day is tomorrow, Saturday, March 24th.

Just this past November, we saw a New Orleans City Council race that was decided by only 111 votes. This special election could be even closer. It is critical that you get out and vote!

Forum for Equality PAC interviews candidates and our membership votes to support those who are committed to advancing equality and good government.

We have have made the following endorsements in the upcoming election. Please support and vote for the following candidates:

Orleans Parish Civil District Court, Div. A: Richard Perque

Judge, 4th Circuit Court of Appeal: Judge Robin Pittman

State Representative, 93rd District: Kenny Bordes OR Royce Duplessis

If you would like to volunteer for one of these candidates tomorrow, please click on their name to connect you to their campaigns.

For information on your voting location, please visit the Secretary of State website.

If you are interested in becoming involved in Forum for Equality and our endorsement process, please become a member today.

 

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Can’t Deny Love!

We are very disappointed with the Louisiana Supreme Court’s decision not to consider the appeal of Governor Edwards’s LGBTQ Nondiscrimination Executive Order.

In a 4-3 vote today, the Louisiana Supreme Court let stand lower court rulings endorsing Attorney General Jeff Landry’s effort to dismantle protections for gay and transgender Louisianans from discrimination.

Chief Justice Bernette J. Johnson was blunt in her dissent: “I am dismayed that Louisiana finds itself, yet again, on the wrong side of history in a matter of civil rights and social justice.” The overwhelming majority of our fellow citizens support protecting LGBTQ people from discrimination, but there are no such protections under state law. This is why the Governor’s Executive Order was such a crucial step forward for our State.

This decision is a clear step backward for Louisiana. We want to thank Governor John Bel Edwards and Executive Counsel Matthew Block for standing up for equality and their dedication to protecting all citizens from discrimination.

This decision does not mark the end of our battle. Currently, the Louisiana Employment Nondiscrimination Act is pending in the State Senate. While this decision is a disappointing outcome, use this moment to let your Senator know that securing legal protections for the LGBTQ community is non-negotiable, now more than ever.

With equality,

SarahJane Guidry

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