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Atlanta LGBT Civil Rights March participants urged to play role in upcoming elections

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Approximately 50 people marched from Woodruff Park to the state Capitol on Saturday, April 21, as part of the 2012 Worldwide LGBT Civil Rights March that was to take place in cities across the country and world, according to organizers.

At a rally at the state Capitol following the march, numerous people spoke about the challenges lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people face in Georgia and around the world in their fight for full equality.

But they also urged people to be committed and dedicated to achieving equality because the opposition works every day to plant obstacles, target gay-friendly politicians and strategize politically to bring the LGBT movement to a standstill.

One way to show the commitment is to work for candidates who believe in LGBT equality and vote on July 31 in the primary for state and local elected officials.

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Ga. LGBT job bill looks to be revived next year under Gold Dome

A bill that would prohibit state employees from being fired because they are gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender never got out of a Judiciary Committee subcommittee this year in the Georgia legislature, but plans are to continue garnering support to have it passed in a future session.

When the State Fair Employment Practices Act, HB 630, was first introduced at the end of last year's session by state Rep. Karla Drenner (D-Atlanta), activists planned for the bill to take perhaps several sessions before it would get passed, said Georgia Equality Executive Director Jeff Graham.

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Anti-gay Georgians ramping up against state employment non-discrimination bill

Georgia Equality is in the midst of a $15,000 fundraising campaign, hoping to reach the goal by Monday when the first day of the legislative session opens. And it needs the money to fend off nasty attacks being put out opposing an employment non-discrimination bill introduced late last session.

In an email to supporters, Georgia Equality points to a May newsletter of GeorgiaInsight.org to explain, "this is what we are up against" when it lobbies this year in favor of House Bill 630, an employment non-discrimination bill that includes sexual orientation and gender identity.

The anti-gay newsletter states in part, "H.B. 630 gives civil rights protection to pedophiles, peeping toms, cross-dressers, flashers and those practicing bestiality or necrophilia (sex with corpse). The American Psychiatric Association (APA) lists these and other acts as deviant and abnormal sexual behaviors. They are chargeable offenses under Georgia law, as well."

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State Rep. Karla Drenner to be honored by Georgia Equality

Georgia Equality will honor State Rep. Karla Drenner among others at its 7th Annual Evening for Equality on June 23.

Drenner, a Democrat from Avondale Estates, will be awarded the Champions for Equality Award for her leadership in the General Assembly as the first openly gay person elected to the legislature. Drenner is serving her sixth term and this year introduced the State Fair Employment Practices Act that would ban job bias against state employees based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

Georgia Equality will also honor Bill Nigut, the Southeast Regional Director of the Anti-Defamation League, with the Phillip Rush Community Builder Award.

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Georgia Equality announces endorsements in upcoming election

Georgia Equality announced today some of its endorsements in the Nov. 2 election, saying it would make more endorsements in the near future.

“The endorsed candidates below have demonstrated their support of the LGBT community and they need your support now,” said Jeff Graham, executive director of Georgia Equality, in a press release about the endorsements.