U.S. Latino Organizations Form “Familia es Familia” To Support LGBT Relatives

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When it comes to support of one’s gay or lesbian relatives, several studies have shown that the Hispanic are the most accepting and understanding of their loved ones’ self-acceptance of sexuality.  Thus, great news has rocked the Latino/a LGBT community as America’s prominent organizations serving the Latino community joined forced to form the “Familia es Familia” campaign to show support for the relatives in the LGBT community.  Organizations in the fight to protect their loved ones against homophobia as well as their freedom to marry include Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute, Cuban American National Council, Hispanic National Bar Association, League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), MANA – A National Latina Organization, National Association of Hispanic in Publications, National Hispanic Media Coalition and National Puerto Rican Coalition.

Check out the press release below.

Twenty-one of the nation’s leading Hispanic organizations announced their endorsement of a first-of-its kind, comprehensive public-education campaign called Familia es Familia aimed at strengthening Latino voices to build support within the Latino community for acceptance of LGBT family members.

Public opinion polls show that Latinos really do lead the way when it comes to attitudes toward lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people. Several recent studies by the Pew Hispanic Center, Bendixen & Amandi International, 2012 Opportunity Agenda and SSRS found strong support among Hispanics for a number of LGBT issues.

Familia es Familia will be a bilingual campaign providing resources and information that are culturally appropriate to empower voices within and from Latino families and communities. In addition, the campaign will provide training, technical assistance, and support to the 21 Hispanic organizations and will spearhead a national effort to educate the public through a range of viral components including: an interactive bilingual website rich with videos, resources, and publications; social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube; promoting stories and voices in the media; and an organizing campaign to engage the community through their mobile devices.

“The polling shows that many in the Latino community already understand that there is one struggle for equality, a struggle that benefits from appreciating common mission. Familia es Familia is a campaign that will help to deepen the understanding that a discriminatory deprivation of rights on any basis is a cause of concern for all. Together, we can overcome all of the irrational biases that adversely affect any member
of the Latino community,” said Thomas A. Saenz, President and General Counsel, MALDEF.

“NCLR is deeply committed to the civil rights of all Americans, including our friends and family in the LGBT community. We are very proud that this ground-breaking public education campaign, ‘Familia es Familia’, is being launched at our Annual Conference this year in Las Vegas,” said Janet Murguia, President and CEO, NCLR.

Brent Wilkes, Executive Director of LULAC, the nation’s oldest Latino civil rights organization said, “Since its inception, LULAC has fought for the equality of minorities. All individuals regardless of their race, ethnicity, country of origin or sexual orientation, deserve equal rights.”

“A growing majority of Latinos in this country know that every gay or lesbian person is part of someone’s family – a son or daughter, a brother or sister, a loved one – and the more conversations we have, family member to family member, the more support for the freedom to marry grows,” said Evan Wolfson, founder and President of Freedom to Marry, the campaign to win marriage nationwide. “Latino gay couples seek the freedom to marry to affirm and strengthen their love, their commitment, and their ability to take care of each other and their families; government should not be putting barriers in their way. Freedom to Marry is proud to be supporting the Familia es Familia campaign to lift up Hispanic voices and stories as together we make the case for ending the exclusion from marriage.”

Freedom to Marry provided the seed funding and serves as fiscal sponsor for Familia es Familia. The Gill Foundation has also committed to providing additional resources.

“Given the breadth and depth of this first-of-its-kind campaign, this effort is so vital for our community, and we hope that it will help to change the dialogue and hearts and minds about our Latino LGBT family and community Members,” said Ingrid Duran, Laura Esquivel and Catherine Pino, the D&P Creative Strategies team, the lead firm working with Freedom to Marry to create and manage the campaign.

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