LGBTQ Dems Call on Legislature to Pass Statewide Protections

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 27, 2020

FLORIDA LGBTQ+ DEMOCRATIC CAUCUS CALLS ON LEGISLATURE TO PASS STATEWIDE PROTECTIONS FOR LGBTQ COMMUNITY

DELRAY BEACH, FL – Today at the state Capitol in Tallahassee, advocates are pushing for statewide protections for LGBTQ Floridians in light of several blatantly discriminatory bills that were recently filed.

Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus President Stephen Gaskill issued the following statement on the anti-LGBTQ legislation and need for statewide protections:

“No matter how Republican lawmakers try to spin the impact of the discriminatory legislation they recently filed, the bills are a direct attack on every LGBTQ Floridian – and prove the need for statewide protections. Our community is their go-to election year punching bag when it’s time to win votes and curry favor with the radical Religious Right. Today we stand with the openly-LGBTQ members of the Florida legislature who are fighting back against this discriminatory legislation and pressing forward on the protections we need.”

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The Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus, represents lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer Floridians to the Florida Democratic Party (FDP). The Caucus has 21 chapters across Florida, from Miami to Jacksonville to Pensacola.  More information is on our websitehttps://www.lgbtqdems.org.

Capital Equality: Leon County Public Defender Candidates

Both Democratic candidates filed to run in the 2020 race for Leon County Public Defender have been invited to speak during Capital Equality’s upcoming membership meeting on Wednesday, February 12, 2020. Incumbent Andy Thomas and challenger Jessica Yeary have both confirmed their plans to attend.

This meeting of the Capital Equality Democratic Caucus will be held at 6:30pm at Milano Pizzeria, 514 W. Tharpe Street, Tallahassee, and is open to all Democrats.

Grab a friend and join us for an informative and entertaining session! We hope to see you there!

Caucus Statement on the Anti-LGBTQ Legislation Proposed by Republican Lawmakers in Tallahassee

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 16, 2020
FLORIDA LGBTQ+ DEMOCRATIC CAUCUS STATEMENT ON THE ANTI-LGBTQ LEGISLATION PROPOSED BY REPUBLICAN LAWMAKERS IN TALLAHASSEE
DELRAY BEACH FL – Republican legislators in Tallahassee have filed several draconian anti-LGBTQ bills to be considered this session. Press reports indicate that HB 1365 would make it a felony for doctors to change the sex of a minor; HB 305 would repeal local employment anti-discrimination protections due to sexual orientation and gender identity; CS/HB3 would repeal local ordinances protecting LGBTQ youth from so-called “conversion therapy” and block local governments from enacting future bans; and HB 537 would allow conversion therapy if it’s practiced in a home.
Stephen Gaskill, president of the Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus, issued the following statement on the anti-LGBTQ legislation:
“The Florida Legislature never disappoints when it comes to pushing an anti-LGBTQ agenda. Despite the progress the LGBTQ community has made, despite the presence of openly-LGBTQ elected officials and staff in Tallahassee, and despite the basic level of decency required to serve the public, Florida Republicans continue to pursue dangerous and discriminatory policies aiming to harm LGBTQ Floridians. How can these Republican elected officials explain to their constituents why this is their top priority this session? The answer is they can’t, because these bills are disconnected from reality. The members of the Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus stand ready to combat this blatantly discriminatory legislation.”

Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus Lobby Days: February 18 & 19

Caucus Lobby Days are coming — and we want YOU!

Join the Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus for our 2020 Lobby Days in Tallahassee. There is much on the agenda, and as always equality is at stake. It is imperative that we make our voices heard.

We have two packed days of meetings with elected officials and staff, as well as a guided tour of the Supreme Court. We will also host a cocktail reception for Members, staff and affiliated organizations at the new headquarters of the Florida Democratic Party. We welcome everyone to participate!

Our draft schedule is below to help you plan. The $30 registration fee cover materials and catered lunch for both days, as well as the cocktail reception. Register here.

One other note — Tallahassee is busy during session, so be sure to make your hotel reservations as soon as you can!

LOBBY DAY SCHEDULE

Monday, February 17: Travel to Tallahassee (on your own)

Tuesday, February 18: Organizing Session, Tour, Legislative Meetings. Lunch and Cocktail Reception included.

Wednesday, February 19: Legislative Meetings. Lunch included.

We hope to see you in Tallahassee!

All In to Win In 2020 – Attend our Winter Conference: March 6-8

We’re All In to Win In 2020 — it’s the Winter Conference of the Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus! Join us March 6-8 at the Marriott Orlando Airport Lakeside Hotel for the kickoff to the Florida 2020 election season. As always, the Winter Conference will feature elected officials and candidates, Democratic Party officials, subject matter experts on specific topics, interesting panel discussions on LGBTQ issues and plenty of opportunities for participation.

We’ll also hold a Membership Meeting to discuss bylaws changes, and conduct a Presidential Straw Poll so Floridians will know where the LGBTQ community stands.

Registration & Hotel

To register for All In to Win In 2020, click here. Your registration fee covers Materials, the Welcome Reception on Friday evening, and Continental Breakfast and Lunch on Saturday. Conference registration is $40 through March 5; then $50 during the conference.

The Marriott Orlando Airport Lakeside Hotel is a beautiful resort. Book directly with the hotel here.

Lunch Session

Lunch is included with your conference registration. However, advance tickets can be purchased for $10 if you’d like to just attend and hear our exciting speakers without eating lunch. If you’d like lunch included or wish to attend the full day’s events, please register for the conference.  Cynthia Nixon will headline the lunch session along with Orlando City Commissioner Patty Sheehan! Cynthia is a former actress, previous New York gubernatorial candidate, and supporter of Senator Bernie Sanders

Leadership Dinner

The highlight of the conference, our Leadership Dinner, is separately ticketed, and dinner tickets can be purchased here. Leadership Dinner tickets are $90 through March 5; then $100 during the conference. House Impeachment Manager and U.S. Representative Val Demings will deliver the Congressional Keynote at the Leadership Dinner. Dinner speakers also include Dr. Jill Biden representing the Joe Biden campaign, and Executive Editor of Out Magazine and founder of Black Trans Circles Raquel Willis representing the Elizabeth Warren campaign.

Sponsors can click here to get more information about sponsorship packages and leadership dinner program ads.

Program Schedule

FRIDAY, MARCH 6

ALL EVENTS ARE AT THE MARRIOTT ORLANDO LAKESIDE HOTEL UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED

Registration begins at 5pm

Welcome Reception
6:30pm to 8:30pm
Sponsored by the Rainbow Democrats

SATURDAY, MARCH 7

8:00am
Registration
Continental Breakfast

8:30am
Breakfast Speaker: Terrie Rizzo, Florida Democratic Party Chair

Morning Session

Welcome:

  • Stephen Gaskill, President, Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus
  • Brandon Nelson, President, Rainbow Democrats
  • Wes Hodge, Orange County DEC Chair

Presentation: Forces Driving Discrimination in Florida Schools

  • Carol Cleaver, science teacher; Escambia Education Association Teacher’s Union; Vice President of the Emerald Coast Equality LGBTA Democratic Caucus

Presentation: What Does That Mean? Non-Binary, Genderqueer and the New Language of the LGBTQ+ Movement

  • Reign Hervey, Caucus Director of Diversity and Inclusion

Speakers:

  • Adam Sabin, Caucus Treasurer, Budget Presentation
  • Ben Johansen, Founder, Pulse Ribbon Project

Lunch (12 p.m. – 1 p.m.)

  • Former actress, previous New York gubernatorial candidate, and Senator Bernie Sanders supporter Cynthia Nixon
  • Orlando City Commissioner Patty Sheehan
  • Tickets are $10 if you’d like to just attend the lunch session to hear Cynthia and Patty speak, without eating lunch. If you’d like to lunch included or wish to attend the full day’s events, please register for the conference. This session is include in the conference registration fee.

Afternoon Session

Speakers: Tallahassee Legislative Update

  • State Rep. Carlos Guillermo Smith
  • State Sen. Annette Taddeo

Panel Discussion: Issues and Challenges for Florida’s Trans Community

  • Nathan Bruemmer, former Executive Director, ALSO Youth
  • Ricki Bauman, Assistant Secretary, Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus
  • Gina Duncan, Director of Transgender Equality, Equality Florida

Panel Discussion: Convert to Love: Ban Conversion Therapy

  • Eric Rollings, Organizer, Convert to Love: Ban Conversion Therapy
  • Heather Wilkie, Zebra Coalition
  • Jennifer Foster, CEO, One Orlando Alliance
  • Stephanie Preston-Hughes, Orange Counseling

Speakers Session

  • Ben Johansen, Founder, Pulse Ribbon Project

Membership Meeting

  • Director Presentations
  • Bylaws Change Discussion and Vote
  • Presidential Straw Poll

5pm
Adjourn

6:30pm to 7:30pm
Cocktail Reception

7:30pm
Leadership Dinner

Program:

SUNDAY, MARCH 8

10am to Noon
Farewell Brunch
Hammered Lamb
1235 N. Orange Ave.
Orlando

12:30pm
Group Tour of Pulse Memorial
1912 S. Orange Ave.
Orlando

Capital Equality: City Commission Seat 1 Democratic Candidates

Democratic candidates filed to run in the 2020 race for Tallahassee City Commission, Seat 1, have been invited to speak during Capital Equality’s upcoming membership meeting on Wednesday, January 8, 2020.

This meeting of the Capital Equality Democratic Caucus will be held at 6:30pm at the Leon County Public Library, Program Room A, in downtown Tallahassee and is open to all Democrats.

Grab a friend and join us for an informative and entertaining session! We hope to see you there!

Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus Supports Impeachment

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 18, 2019
DELRAY BEACH FL – The US House of Representatives today approved two articles of impeachment against President Trump. The Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus has twice called for the impeachment of the president: in light of the numerous instances of obstruction of justice outlined in the Mueller Report, and as the case around Ukraine has unfolded.
Stephen Gaskill, president of the Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus, issued the following statement on today’s House action to impeach President Trump:
“President Trump has betrayed both his oath of office and his commitment to the American people. His focus on using the office of the presidency for his own personal gain belies the trust Americans have in their president to do the right thing, regardless of their own political persuasion. The House vote supporting two articles of impeachment is a sad yet necessary action to ensure the future of our democracy. The Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus stands in support of our brave and thoughtful Florida Representatives who voted to uphold the rule of law.”
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LGBTQ+ Dems Energized for Tonight’s Debate

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 20, 2019
FLORIDA LGBTQ+ DEMOCRATIC CAUCUS ORGANIZES AROUND TONIGHT’S DEBATE
DELRAY BEACH FL – At 9 p.m. tonight, MSNBC and The Washington Post are hosting the November Democratic Presidential debate with 10 candidates participating. Chapters of the Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus are hosting and participating in watch parties across the state (listed below) to celebrate this moment and organize activists in advance of the 2020 election.
Stephen Gaskill, president of the Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus, issued the following statement in response to the debate:
“LGBTQ+ Democrats in Florida are organized and energized like never before and we are thrilled to hear where Democratic presidential candidates stand. We’re inspired by the most diverse field of candidates in history, including the first openly gay presidential candidate. Our community is ready to beat Donald Trump and end his relentless attacks on LGBTQ+ Americans.”
In addition to candlelight vigils for Transgender Day of Remembrance around Floridachapters of the Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus are hosting watch parties across the state:
Emerald Coast Equality LGBTA Democratic Caucus (Escambia)
Cactus Flower Cafe, 3425 North 12th Avenue in East Hill
8:00 p.m.
Capital Equality Democratic Caucus (Leon)
Beef ‘O’ Brady’s Capital Circle
1208 Capital Cir SE, Tallahassee, Florida 32301
8:30 p.m.
Rainbow Democrats (Orange)
The Local Bar and Grill
3231 Edgewater Dr, Orlando, FL 32804
7:00 p.m.
Stonewall Democratic Caucus of Sarasota County
Sarasota DEC Headquarters
7358 S Tamiami Trail (Coral Cove Mall)
7:00 p.m.
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The Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus is an arm of the Florida Democratic Party representing lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer Democrats. The Caucus has 19 chapters across Florida, from Miami to Jacksonville to the Panhandle.

Transgender Day of Remembrance 2019

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 20, 2019

FLORIDA LGBTQ+ DEMOCRATIC CAUCUS CELEBRATES THE LIVES OF TRANSGENDER FLORIDIANS LOST TO SENSELESS VIOLENCE

DELRAY BEACH FL – Today is Transgender Day of Remembrance, a day to honor the memory of those who lost their lives from anti-transgender prejudice. According to a new Human Rights Campaign report, 22 transgender people have been murdered in the United States in 2019. Three of those victims were Floridians.

Ellie Marie Washtock
Shot on 1/31/19 in World Golf Village, FL

Marquis “Kiki” Fantroy
Shot on 7/31/19 in Miami, FL

Bee Love Slater
Burned on 9/4/19 in Clewiston, FL

Stephen Gaskill, president of the Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus, issued the following statement for Transgender Day of Remembrance and to honor the lives that we’ve lost:

“On Transgender Day of Remembrance we honor courageous individuals who dared to live the lives they were meant to live, but whose time with us was cut short. We are all accountable for ensuring acceptance, raising awareness, and providing support for our community, and in that respect today is a reminder that we have failed.

“The LGBTQ community in Florida is diverse, and that diversity is our strength. We stand united with Florida’s transgender community, and particularly our transgender women of color, who have been the target of deadly violence. Our thoughts are with them today, and our actions will support them always.”

Chapters of the Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus are taking part in vigils across the state:

Stonewall Democrats of Alachua County

Depot Park, Gainesville, FL
7:00 p.m.

Dolphin Democrats (Broward)

The Pride Center
2040 N Dixie Hwy, Wilton Manors, FL 33305
7:00 p.m.

Emerald Coast Equality LGBTA Democratic Caucus (Escambia)

Cactus Flower Cafe, 3425 North 12th Avenue in East Hill
7:30 p.m.

Hillsborough County LGBTA Democratic Caucus

Metro LGBTQ Welcome Center
2227 Central Ave, Saint Petersburg, Florida 33713
7:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.

Lee County LGBTA Democratic Caucus

Old Court House Steps: 2120 Main St, Fort Myers, FL 33901
5:45 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.

Capital Equality Democratic Caucus (Leon)

Cascades Park, Downtown Tallahassee
6:00 p.m.

Rainbow Democrats (Orange)

Valencia College East Campus
701 N Econlockhatchee Trail, Orlando, 32825
2:00 p.m. – 9:45 p.m.

Rusty Gordon LGBTA Democratic Caucus of the Palm Beaches

Vigil for Bee Love Slater*
Dolly Hand Cultural Arts Center
1977 SW College Dr, Belle Glade, Florida 33430
6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.

*State Caucus President Stephen Gaskill will participate in this event

Stonewall Democrats of Pinellas County

Metro LGBTQ Welcome Center
2227 Central Ave, Saint Petersburg, Florida 33713
7:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.

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The Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus is an arm of the Florida Democratic Party representing lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer Democrats. The Caucus has 19 chapters across Florida, from Miami to Jacksonville to the Panhandle. More information is on our website, www.floridalgbtademocrats.org.

Candlelight Vigil for Transgender Day of Remembrance

Today we join members of the LGBTQ+ community and allies all over the world to remember and honor the lives lost to anti-transgender violence. Capital Tea, a local organization providing support and resources for the transgender community, will be hosting a Candlelight Vigil for Transgender Day of Remembrance tonight beginning at 6pm in Cascades Park in Downtown Tallahassee.

A Chartered Chapter of the Florida LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus