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WASHINGTON, September 26, 2018 — Today, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) civil rights organization, and SAVE, South Florida's foremost advocate for the LGBTQ community, announced their endorsements of Donna Shalala (D) in her bid to represent the people of Florida’s 27th Congressional District. Shalala is running to replace outgoing champion of equality Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R), who is retiring from office at the end of her term.
“Donna Shalala is a proven leader who will stand up to Donald Trump and Mike Pence and help pull the emergency brake on their reckless agenda,” said HRC National Field Director Marty Rouse. “With the experience and commitment needed to move LGBTQ equality forward, Donna will reject the politics of discrimination and fight for all of the hard-working families in her district, across the state of Florida, and throughout the country. HRC is proud to endorse Donna Shalala for U.S. Congress.”
In his fourth season with the Miami Dolphins, Kenny Stills has consistently utilized his position as a professional athlete to make an impact on and off the field. Stills has been a pioneer among athletes in addressing societal issues. The team captain has participated in every player driven community event for the last two seasons and helped organize a town hall meeting in 2016 that brought influential local leaders together with law enforcement to discuss actionable steps to address issues of racial inequality. Stills has won SAVE's admiration and respect for being one of the most visible Dolphins in the community and a strong advocate to protest against racial inequality and systemic oppression.
“Retiring Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen is leaving behind a long legacy of championing LGBTQ equality, and we are proud to be supporting Donna Shalala to continue that legacy,” said SAVE Executive Director Tony Lima. “It is beyond doubt that Donna is the most qualified candidate in this race. She is ready to be our next champion in D.C. on day one.”
“I am honored to receive the endorsement of the Human Rights Campaign and SAVE, two organizations that have fought so hard for equality in Miami-Dade and around the country,” said Donna Shalala. “Though we’ve come so far in achieving basic equal rights for LGBTQ Americans, there is still much work to be done, and I look forward to getting to Congress to continue fighting.”
Donna E. Shalala has spent her entire career fighting to improve the lives of others. The former president of the University of Miami, she has advocated tirelessly for women’s rights, civil rights, increased access to health care, better education and schools and a clean, sustainable environment. She was appointed by President Bill Clinton to serve as the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) where she served for eight years, becoming the longest serving HHS Secretary in U.S. history. In Congress, Shalala has pledged to support the Equality Act — critically important federal legislation that would finally add clear, comprehensive non-discrimination protections for LGBTQ people to our nation's civil rights laws.
In Florida, HRC has identified nearly 700,000 LGBTQ voters and more than 3.2 million “Equality Voters” — meaning they are strong supporters of progressive LGBTQ policies including marriage equality, equitable family law, and laws that prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. Last year, HRC announced a coast-to-coast campaign to mobilize these voters for the midterm elections called HRC Rising, which represents the largest grassroots expansion in the organization’s 38-year history.
Monday, SAVE, Human Rights Campaign and Equality Florida to Join Andrew Gillum at LGBTQ Support Rally for Important Campaign Announcement
MIAMI, FL, September 20, 2018 — With less than 50 days until the critical 2018 midterm elections, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) — America's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) civil rights organization, SAVE — South Florida's foremost advocate for the LGBTQ community, and Equality Florida — the largest civil rights organization working to secure full equality for Florida’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) community, will join Mayor Andrew Gillum and other key leaders and allies on Monday to make an important campaign announcement about LGBTQ support for Andrew Gillum’s historic bid to become governor.
WHAT: LGBTQ Rally & Special Campaign Announcement
DATE: Monday, September 24, 2018
WHEN: 3:00 PM - Speaking Agenda Begins
WHERE: SAVE Headquarters 1951 NW 7 Ave Miami, FL 33136
WHO: Andrew Gillum, Democratic Candidate for Governor of Florida
Chad Griffin, President of the Human Rights Campaign
Tony Lima, Executive Director of SAVE
Nadine Smith, President and CEO of Equality Florida
Throughout his public service career, Mayor Andrew Gillum has proven to be a staunch advocate for Florida’s LGBTQ community. Before same-sex marriage was the law of the land, Gillum fought to expand domestic partner benefits for city employees. As Mayor of Tallahassee, Gillum strongly opposed counties that sought to undermine marriage equality by extending invitations to Florida same-sex couples to marry in the state capital. As governor, Gillum will continue to be a leader in the fight to advance full equality and protections for LGBTQ Floridians in the sunshine state.
In the general election, Gillum will be facing anti-LGBTQ extremist Ron DeSantis. DeSantis has eagerly embraced the rhetorical and policy attacks on LGBTQ Americans from the Trump-Pence administration and has consistently scored abysmally on HRC’s Congressional Scorecard -- which measures members’ of Congress support for LGBTQ equality and policies.
SAVE is recognized as South Florida’s leading organization dedicated to promoting, protecting and defending the rights of people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) against discrimination. Since 1993, SAVE has advocated for equal rights through political advocacy, community outreach, and education. Starting with the landmark passage of Miami's Human Rights Ordinance in 1998 to the work spearheaded by SAVE and the ACLU which resulted in marriage equality in Florida in 2015, SAVE continues to lead the fight for LGBTQ equality. SAVE’s vision is to ensure that people in Florida who are LGBTQ have full equality in all facets of life.
About Human Rights Campaign
The Human Rights Campaign is America’s largest civil rights organization working to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people. HRC envisions a world where LGBTQ people are embraced as full members of society at home, at work and in every community.
Senator Bill Nelson has been a long time Champion of Equality since first being elected in 2000. His strong pro-LGBT voting record includes voting to add sexual orientation to the definition of hate crimes, repealing Don't Ask, Don't Tell, and signing on as a sponsor to the Equality Act. He believes that "the civil rights and responsibilities for one must pertain to all. Thus, to discriminate against one class and not another is wrong for me."
Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Shultz also has a proven pro-equality track record since she was first elected in 2004. She has supported bills such as ENDA and the Equality Act, co-sponsored the Student Non-Discrimination Act, and fought a Republican-controlled Congress from banning gay marriage. She has stated, "I am proud to stand with the LGBT community in the fight to make the United States a more just and equal nation, and to defend LGBT rights wherever and whenever they are threatened around the globe."
Election day is November 6th.