1,000 signatures reached
To: Public and elected officials
Stop Anti-LGBTQ Laws: Discrimination is not a Religious Value
As people of faith and religious leaders, we urge you to reject anti-LGBTQ and, specifically, anti-transgender legislation and to commit to creating loving, just communities that embody justice for people of all gender identities and sexual orientations.
"The voices of people of faith and religious leaders are needed to respond to any attempt to target transgender people and to restrict justice, dignity, and equality for all LGBTQ people. We must stand up and speak out against these attacks on transgender people and on LGBTQ justice, dignity, and equality. We must call for a world that embodies justice for people of all gender identities and sexual orientations.
"As religious leaders and people of faith, we have an obligation to create a world that embraces the diversity of God’s creation. We urge religious leaders and people of faith to publicly advocate for the civil and human rights of LGBTQ people, including anti-discrimination laws, access to healthcare, access to public accommodations, and freedom to use the restroom with which they identify. In this time, we also call religious leaders to address the pastoral needs of those in their congregations and local communities who face injury and discrimination because of anti-LGBTQ efforts. Finally, we call on public and elected officials to commit to creating loving, just communities that embrace everyone.
"As religious leaders and people of faith, we believe all people must be able to live fully and express their gender and sexuality with integrity. Together we must create a world where lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer people are celebrated in our local communities and where sexual and gender diversity are acknowledged as a blessing that enriches all."
Why is this important?
2016 has been a startling year for legislative attempts to restrict justice, dignity, and equality for LGBTQ people. More than 175 anti-LGBTQ bills have been filed in 32 states. Of the record 175+ anti-LGBTQ bills filed, 45 of those bills directly target transgender people. Already in 2016, legislatures in South Dakota, Arkansas, Georgia, Tennessee, Missouri, and North Carolina have considered and, in some cases, passed anti-transgender bills. Too often these anti-LGBTQ efforts are perpetrated in the name of religion.
These bills and their proponents perpetuate false narratives about transgender people and vilify transgender women, in particular, as threatening safety in women's restrooms. This dishonest rhetoric perpetuates hostility and violence toward transgender and gender non-conforming people seeking to access public accommodations. Some of this anti-LGBTQ legislation, like the recently passed bill in North Carolina, override local ordinances protecting LGBTQ people from discrimination—preventing local municipalities from outlawing discrimination against LGBTQ people.
*When you sign this petition, you'll be invited to the Religious Institute’s network of more than 15,000 people of faith.
How it will be delivered
This letter—which is being organized by the Religious Institute—will be delivered to the governors and state legislatures in every state where anti-LGBTQ or anti-transgender legislation is being considered, beginning with North Carolina and Georgia.