Get on the horn, people, and help GetEQUAL put pressure on an anti-gay Democrat from Pennsylvania. (Script after the jump.)
Clarks Summit: 570-585-9988
Washington, DC: 202-225-3731
At 10:00 Eastern time this morning, GetEQUAL PA brought advocates together from around the state to tell Congressman Carney that our community will no longer stand silently and watch him vote against our rights. The non-violent, civil disobedient action was carried out at Rep. Carney's congressional district office in Williamsport, Pennsylvania, asking him to sign a pledge to vote in support of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA).
Carney is a died-in-the-wool blue dog, and we're paying for him on our side. This is from the GetEQUAL PA press release:
Rep. Chris Carney has a long-record of voting against his LGBT constituents. In 2009, he voted against the Matthew Shepard Hate Crimes Prevention Act and this year voted against the Murphy Amendment to the Defense Authorization Act - more commonly known as the compromise legislation to begin the process to repeal the military's discriminatory "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" law. Additionally, this year Rep. Carney has made it known that his intent is to vote against any Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) bill that would protect millions of hard-working, tax-paying LGBT workers - both in Pennsylvania and across the country.
"Rep. Carney has continued voting against protecting the jobs of millions of American workers simply for no other reason than because of who they are," said Audrey Smith, co-founder of Pennsylvania based Justice League-Activate!. "While Rep. Carney is out on the campaign trail worried about his own job, he continues to leave his LGBT constituents unprotected and without any form of federal employment protections. Like all Americans, we are worried about our job security and Rep. Carney's votes based on discrimination are completely unacceptable. He needs to know that we Pennsylvanians expect him to protect OUR lives and jobs and not just his own!"
Call with the following message for Rep. Carney:
"I am calling to urge Rep. Chris Carney to vote YES on the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. If he cares about his own employment as a Representative, he needs to care about the employment of the people he represents!"
From the Facebook event page:
Rep. Chris Carney is a Democrat who represents Pennsylvania's 10th Congressional District, which includes much of the north central and northeastern parts of Pennsylvania.
As a Democrat, he has been very unsupportive of LGBT issues, including voting NO on the Don't Ask Don't Tell compromise this past May and also voting NO on last year's Hate Crimes bill. Recently, he has also indicated that he would not support the Employment No...ndiscrimination Act (ENDA).
GetEQUAL began promoting the "ENDA SUMMER" campaign a few weeks ago, after several activists from around the nation began working to pressure our large LGBT organizations to use Congress' summer recess to push for a vote on ENDA this year. Full disclosure, I was initially part of this ENDA SUMMER group back in May, June and July.
Explaining their goals in the press release, GetEQUAL says:
...ENDA is a piece of federal legislation that would make it illegal to hire, fire or refuse to promote LGBT workers simply because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. ...Lesbian, gay, and bisexual employees can be fired from their jobs in 29 states, and transgender or gender-nonconforming employees can be fired in 38 states.
"As long as people's lives and livelihoods are at stake, GetEQUAL will continue standing up with allied organizations demanding federal protections for millions of American workers," said Robin McGehee, co-founder and director of GetEQUAL. "Our 'ENDA Summer' campaign is in full-swing and politicians who vote against our community and those who promise to support equality but never deliver should be on the watch. For 40 years the LGBT community has asked Congress to simply protect our right to employment and to provide for our families. The passage of ENDA is way overdue."
"GetEQUAL has promised that, as long as people's lives and livelihoods are at stake, we will not stop standing up for those LGBT workers in dozens of states across this country without a voice, without any job security," said Heather Cronk, managing director of GetEQUAL. "With the launch of our 'ENDA Summer' campaign, we told politicians that while they are back home campaigning to save their jobs, we intend on reminding them that their employment isn't the only one on the line. Millions of LGBT workers punch a clock every single day unsure if today's timecard could turn into tomorrow's discriminatory pink slip. The time to pass ENDA is now."
In addition to the action against Rep. Carney this morning, GetEQUAL, along with local advocates, has also targeted two members of the Democratic House Leadership this week demanding that they follow through on their promise to pass ENDA this year. Last night, U.S. House Education and Labor Committee Chairman George Miller (D-CA) was targeted during a campaign debate. Rep. Miller, nearly six months ago, promised that after healthcare legislation was passed that he'd move on ENDA. Healthcare legislation passed the House on March 22nd, 2010.
Later today, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi will be targeted to make good on her promise to pass ENDA legislation this year. The act of civil disobedience will start with a rally in the historic Harvey Milk Plaza and proceed with shutting down traffic on Market and Castro streets in San Francisco, located in Speaker Pelosi's own congressional district.
Earlier this year they released a timeline, they described as "showing years of broken promises and excuses from elected officials that have led to the stalling of any federal protections being in place for LGBT workers." The timeline is available at www.getequal.org/endatimeline.
What to do after you call
After you've called, leave a comment here and let us know how the call went. I will post some of the grooviest comments in a summary post tomorrow.