Posted on February 16, 2022
Freedom For All Americans is fighting LGBTQ discrimination, with funding from CREDO members
Despite significant victories for equality in recent years, LGBTQ Americans continue to face discrimination in many parts of our country.
Recent grantee Freedom for All Americans is trying to change that. FFAA is the bipartisan campaign to secure full nondiscrimination protections for LGBTQ people nationwide. They are closer than ever to getting this done, by passing the Equality Act, legislation Congress is considering right now.
In June 2021, CREDO members voted to distribute $47,655 to help FFAA run highly individualized education and lobbying campaigns targeting conservative senators in 11 states, to provide both personal and public pressure and achieve the 60 senate votes needed to pass the Equality Act.
Here are some recent victories and highlights from Freedom for All Americans, thanks in part to funding from CREDO members:
FFAA has been working all-out to demonstrate broad, nonpartisan public support for federal LGBTQ nondiscrimination protection, as well as on organizing constituents and surrounding persuadable center-right senators (whose votes will be needed to pass such legislation) with media and constituent voices making the case for why such federal protections are needed and how they grow out of our shared American values.
Over the course of 2021, FFAA has succeeded in organizing more than 180 meetings of constituents with senators and/or their staffers, or individuals close to these senators, in Alaska, Florida, Georgia, Michigan, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, Utah, and West Virginia.
FAAEF has also engaged consultants in 10 states and worked with partners to identify key individuals, leadership of organizations, businesses or associations who have relationships with those they were trying to reach. This included outreach to GOP party officials in North Carolina; members of a West Virginia senator’s family; former Pennsylvania elected officials; municipal leaders in Indiana; state legislative leadership in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Utah and West Virginia; Chamber of Commerce leaders in Nebraska; and the head of the Ohio Business Roundtable.
As part of this work, FFAA has also engaged key constituencies, building a national veterans list with 6 organizational signers and more than 500 veterans supporting nondiscrimination protections from all key states supporting nondiscrimination protections. In Alaska, Florida, Iowa, Nebraska, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia the group released faith leaders lists with key leaders, bishops and clergy leaders included. In Florida, the campaign released a list of more than 20 businesses supporting nondiscrimination protections—including almost all of the major league sports teams (notably World Champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Tampa Bay Lightning). Currently, FFAA is engaging service providers in statements across the country.
The group has added new stories to its Faces of Freedom unbranded story bank, which now has 500 stories/storytellers, with stories from every state in the U.S. making a powerful case for federal protections.
Two of its most recent storytellers are featured below:
More than 175 media pieces growing out of our work have been tracked in 2021. Key recent highlights include:
- Alaskans throw support behind federal LGBTQ protection: This news piece came as a result of an editorial board meeting with the Juneau Empire, featuring GOP electeds, faith leaders, and leaders of direct service organizations who signed on to this open letter to their Senators.
- Guest Opinion: Toomey must act to secure equal rights for LGBTQ Americans: This Op-Ed came from a pastor at Mount Calvary Lutheran in the conservative region of Erie, PA.
- Local View: It’s time to protect all: An Op-Ed from a transgender Nebraska Veteran.
- It’s time to honor all veterans by finally passing federal protections for transgender Americans: A piece from a North Carolina Veteran in Military Times.
- LGBTQ military veterans deserve equal protections under the law: A piece from a Navy veteran
While the Equality Act has not yet been brought for a vote, the numbers above illustrate how FFAA has moved the needle toward successful passage of the bill by lifting up community voices and demonstrating powerful, diverse support—including from conservatives, religious leaders, and businesses.