Most of you know I'm the Executive Director of the National Center for Lesbian Rights. Thirty-three years ago, we were founded by two attorneys seeking to help secure the parenting rights of lesbian mothers who were losing their children when coming out, and NCLR soon expanded to include advocacy for the rights of all LGBT people and our allies.
While a lot has changed in the thirty-three years since NCLR was founded, there's still much to be done. As a legal organization in this constantly changing legal landscape for our community, we often hear from clients and supporters who've had difficulty finding the legal resources needed to protect their rights and sometimes, knowing exactly what legal protections they have and the incredible network of attorneys and advocates willing to fight for their rights.
That's why I want to make sure that members of our community know that they don't have to navigate this landscape alone. I want them to know that there are tools to empower our community, like NCLR's Legal Information Helpline.
From custody matters to immigration issues, our Legal Information Helpline handles over 1500 calls a year from every segment of our diverse community, from every part of the country. In one week, we might hear from:
a mother who may be denied visitation with her child because her ex-husband disapproves of her same-sex relationship
a transgender woman who fled violent persecution in her country of origin because of her gender identity and who is afraid now of being deported from the U.S.
a retail store employee whose supervisor just told him to "act less gay" in a staff meeting in front of all his colleagues
a same-sex couple who are about to buy a house together and are not sure what they need to be considering because their marriage isn't recognized in their state
and a student who was told by their school that they can't put up posters advertising Gay/Straight Alliance events. The calls we receive represent the full range of legal issues concerning our community.
Take a second to learn more about our Legal Information Helpline and what we do at the National Center for Lesbian Rights. And know that if you have legal questions related to your sexual orientation or gender identity, you can always give us a call at 1.800.528.6257.