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#AM_Equality Tipsheet: December 8, 2016

HRC AND EQUALITY NC TOUR STATE TO HIGHLIGHT ROY COOPER’S VICTORY — A WATERSHED MOMENT FOR LGBTQ COMMUNITY: Yesterday, HRC and Equality NC hosted press conferences in Raleigh and Charlotte to congratulate Governor-Elect Roy Cooper. “Together we sent a signal to anti-equality activists and politicians that it is now a political liability to be anti-equality,” said HRC President Chad Griffin. “When Pat McCrory jammed through and signed into law the discriminatory HB2 bill, he picked a fight. That fight with the pro-equality community cost McCrory the governor’s mansion. That the pro-equality forces and a pro-equality candidate won in North Carolina is a watershed moment for our movement.” Through HRC and Equality NC’s Equality Votes Project, more than 24 million impressions online and thousands of face-to-face contacts were made, helping to put Roy Cooper over the edge. The coalition built a program to identify and turn out more than 450,000 North Carolina pro-equality voters, including a large cohort of millennial voters. In a state with roughly 255,000 LGBTQ voters, Cooper’s margin of victory was just over 10,000. Results of major post-election polls found that the anti-LGBTQ HB2 was the critical issue leading to Governor Pat McCrory’s defeat. North Carolina voters opposed to HB2 62 to 30 percent, and cited the discriminatory law as leading reason to vote against McCrory. More from WNCN and The Charlotte Observer.

“[T]his year North Carolinians proved that the days of attacking LGBTQ people for political gain are over. And lawmakers would be wise to learn from Pat McCrory’s mistakes,” writes HRC President Chad Griffin in an op-ed for The Advocate.

ANOTHER DAY, ANOTHER ANTI-LGBTQ CABINET PICK BY TRUMP: Yesterday, Donald Trump named Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, a vicious opponent of LGBTQ equality and climate change denier, as head of the Environmental Protection Agency. Earlier this year, the Tulsa World reported that Pruitt was the “head bully” for Oklahoma lawmakers opposed to President Obama’s guidance for school districts designed to ensure transgender students are treated with dignity in public and federally funded schools, including having equal access to sex-segregated facilities such as restrooms and locker rooms. Pruitt also joined 10 other states filing a lawsuit to block implementation of the president’s guidance. As attorney general, he fought marriage equality, arguing that Oklahoma could continue to define marriage as between a man and woman, and spoke at a conference featuring anti-LGBTQ activists who have asserted that the “homosexual agenda” is a bigger national threat than terrorism, and that employers should be able to fire employees simply for being LGBTQ. More from KRMG.

HRC LAUNCHES 2017 CORPORATE EQUALITY INDEX IN MEXICO CITY: To mark this week’s release of the 2017 Corporate Equality Index (CEI), HRC Foundation held its second-ever international launch of the CEI in Mexico City, recognizing the growing global impact of the nearly 900 companies officially scored by the premiere benchmarking tool for LGBT workplace equality. Last year, the CEI for the first time expanded its scoring criteria include global LGBT-inclusive workplace policies. The business community responded, and this year 98 percent of CEI-rated companies offer  both sexual orientation and gender identity non-discrimination protections to workers domestically and internationally. The Mexico City launch featured representatives from HRC’s on-the ground program HRC Equidad MX: Global Workplace Equality Program, the U.S. Embassy in Mexico, The Dow Chemical Company, J.P. Morgan Chase, and the Mexican state-owned petroleum company, PEMEX. “Now more than ever, we need to find points of collaboration to protect our global community’s gains and continue to move forward,” said Mary Beth Maxwell, HRC’s Senior Vice President for Programs, Research and Training. “With strategic partnerships across the public sector, private businesses and civil society, we can drive real change in the lives of LGBTQ people and further our shared goals of full inclusion in workplaces around the world.” More from HRC.

Businesses and corporations take pride in LGBTQ workplace inclusion: This year, a record-breaking 517 businesses earned the CEI’s top score of 100, a single-year increase of more than 25 percent. Check out how businesses and corporations are taking to Twitter to creatively celebrate their commitment to LGBTQ equality in the workplace at HRC.

THROWBACK THURSDAY: Just over a year ago, HRC joined the small community of Mt. Horeb as they hosted a public reading of the children’s book I Am Jazz in solidarity with a local first grade transgender girl. The school and the girl’s family had planned their own reading of the book to help explain the girl’s identity to her classmates, but canceled the event once the anti-LGBTQ Liberty Counsel threatened a lawsuit against the school. Read HRC’s Welcoming Schools Director Johanna Eager’s piece about the inspiring experience here.

  • Meanwhile, a new Teaching Tolerance report documents in stark detail how educators have seen school climates negatively affected by the results of the recent presidential campaign during which marginalized groups were targeted for derision and harassment. More at HRC
  • And another report finds that many public schools are still hostile to LGBTQ students: Read more here about what Human Rights Watch found in its survey of five representative states.

NCTE RELEASES GROUNDBREAKING SURVEY ON TRANSGENDER PEOPLE: The National Center for Transgender Equality’s (NCTE) survey, released yesterday, provides the most comprehensive picture to date about the lives of transgender people in the United States. While revealing that transgender people overwhelmingly experience discrimination, violence, poverty and unemployment, the survey also pointed to some hopeful signs. Respondents reported growing acceptance among their family, friends, coworkers and others in their lives. Sixty percent of respondents who are out to their families reported that their family was supportive of them. View the survey at www.ustranssurvey.org and more from Reuters.

GO PACK GO: This Week, the Green Bay Packers announced that they will join the Wisconsin LGBT Chamber of Commerce as a Gold Founding Member. The Chamber is an organization of LGBTQ and allied businesses and professionals. More from The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. In October, Green Bay Packers safety and Orlando native Haha Clinton-Dix, right, wore a shirt honoring the victims of the Pulse nightclub shooting during a Sunday Night Football game against the New York Giants.

DAVID CICILLINE BECOMES FIRST OPENLY LGBTQ REPRESENTATIVE ELECTED TO A HOUSE LEADERSHIP POSITION: HRC congratulates Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI) on his election Monday as one of three co-chairs for the Democratic Policy and Communications Committee. Cicilline is the first openly LGBTQ representative to be elected to a House leadership position. More from HRC.

MALTA BECOMES FIRST EUROPEAN COUNTRY TO BAN SO-CALLED “CONVERSION THERAPY”: On Monday, Malta became the first European country to ban so-called “conversion therapy.” The progressive Catholic country was also listed by the WORLD Policy Analysis Center as one of only five countries that have granted full constitutional rights to their LGBTQ citizens. More from Slate.

READING RAINBOW

HRC checks in with HIV 360° Fellow Tyrell Manning… BuzzFeed’s podcast “Another Round” features an interview with trans advocate Janet Mock… The Washington Blade sits down with a Jerusalem-based LGBTQ advocacy organization…

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