A foster care and adoption license to discriminate measure was recently put into a health and human services funding bill in the House Appropriations Committee.
The “Aderholt Amendment” allows foster care and adoption service providers across the country to discriminate against children and prospective parents based on sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, and marital status.
We need your help to tell Senators Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker: NO ADOPTION DISCRIMINATION in the 2019 Appropriations bill! We will deliver hard copies to their offices.1,047 signatures
Dear Senators Alexander and Corker:
We urge you to act to oppose the Aderholt amendment allowing discrimination in foster care and adoption services in the FY19 House Labor-HHS appropriations bill and ensure that the measure is NOT included in any Senate or final appropriations bill.
It would allow taxpayer-funded foster care and adoption service providers to discriminate against children in care and against prospective parents, based on sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, and marital status.
The measure breaks the cardinal rule of child welfare services: to act in the best interest of the child. This amendment would actually HARM CHILDREN.
This amendment would greatly harm the 440,000 children in foster care, particularly the 117,000 who are waiting to be adopted into loving, forever homes. There is a crisis in foster care due to the huge shortage of available families for children. Each year, over half the children waiting to be adopted do not find a loving home, and most devastatingly, over 17,000 foster youth age out of care without a forever family. Those youth are at greater risk of involvement with the criminal justice system, homelessness, unemployment, and being trafficked.
Speak out against this poison pill amendment,; let your leadership know you will not support a funding bill with the measure included, and vote against any appropriations measure that includes such discriminatory provisions. Thank you for considering our views.
Dakerri Barber-Rhone posted about Urge Senators Alexander and Corker to speak up for LGBTQ people when the next Supreme Court justice is appointed on Facebook 2018-06-28 09:22:50 -0500Sign the petition: Urge Senators Alexander and Corker to speak up for LGBTQ people when the next Supreme Court justice is appointed
Urge Senators Alexander and Corker to speak up for LGBTQ people when the next Supreme Court justice is appointed
Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy is retiring so the President will name a successor who must be confirmed by the U.S. Senate. Sign to urge Senator Alexander and Senator Corker to speak up for the LGBTQ community during the confirmation process. TEP will deliver a hard copy of the signatures to their offices.1,069 signatures
Senator Alexander and Senator Corker:
When the President announces his choice to replace Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy, we urge you to speak up for the rights of LGBTQ people. It is vitally important that members of the Supreme Court support the principle of "equal protection" and that Justice Kennedy's successor uphold the existing rights of LGBTQ people and oppose discrimination against LGBTQ people. We respectfully ask you to raise these concerns publicly and not to vote for any nominee who supports discrimination.
Dakerri Barber-Rhone commented on Condolences to Mayor Megan Barry and her Family 2017-08-01 12:36:45 -0500Mayor Barry,
Words cannot express how sorry I am for your loss. You and your family are in my prayers. I’m praying for strength and understanding for you during this difficult time. You are amazing and the Nashville LGBTQ community loves you. Please take this time to spend with your family and remember the light your son brought to our your lives. Memories of his humor, smile, and love will comfort you.
Nashville Mayor Megan Barry and her husband Bruce recently lost their son Max. Members of the LGBT community and allies can leave their condolences here and we will deliver them to the Mayor. Please include your city in your comments. Thank you for showing your love for Mayor Barry and her family.Send feedback
Dakerri Barber-Rhone posted about I Pledge to Work for Equality and Justice after the Marches on Facebook 2017-06-12 12:09:02 -0500I pledge to work for equality and justice after the marches this month.
Sign your name and let us know your email address to pledge your ongoing commitment to the work for full equality in Tennessee after the marches and celebrations are over. That will allow us to stay in touch with you about key training events around the state.
I pledge to work for equality and justice for LGBTQ people in Tennessee after the marches and rallies. I will keep their spirit with me and find ways to resist discrimination and build power for the equality movement. Please, contact me on June 26 for a special announcement about opening a new front in the fight for good public policy for LGBTQ people in Tennessee.
I want to join my efforts with equality advocates statewide to resist the Legislature's attacks.Endorse
Dakerri Barber-Rhone posted about YOUR Districts on Facebook 2017-06-05 11:00:57 -0500YOUR Districts: Tell us your state senate and state house districts as we prepare for next year.
Tell us your state senate and state house districts. Note: We are NOT asking for your U.S. Senate and U.S. House districts (the elected officials who meeting in Washington, D.C. ). We are asking about your elected officials you meet in Nashville--your state senator and your state representative. You can find them at this link by entering your street address.
So tell us your state senator and your state representative as well as your email address. Thank you!Send feedback
Dakerri Barber-Rhone posted about Pride Volunteers 2017 on Facebook 2017-05-15 18:05:59 -0500Volunteer with TEP at Pride celebrations in 2017
Please, tell us your name, email address, and for which Pride festival you will be volunteering. For example, are you volunteering for Knoxville Pridefest? If so, note that. Thanks.Send feedback
Add your name and urge Governor Haslam to veto SB1085/HB1111, the Sneaky LGBT Erasure Bill. After you sign the petition, share it with your friends. We will deliver a hard copy of the signatures to the Governor's Office. Your voice can help determine whether he uses the VETO pen or the BECOMES LAW pen!5,718 signatures
Dear Governor Haslam,
We ask you to veto SB1085/HB1111. This bill, as the Attorney General has noted, is broadly written. Its vagueness could result in conflicts with existing laws about judicial interpretation. These conflicts are likely to cause discrimination against LGBTQ people, particularly with respect to marriage, adoption, and legal documents. This bill risks subjecting Tennessee to the same scrutiny that North Carolina has received. We cannot afford hundreds of millions of dollars in economic boycotts and sanctions. Please, veto this bill so we can avoid judicial chaos and costly discrimination. Thank you for considering our views.
Dakerri Barber-Rhone posted about Demand EEOC pursue LGBT job discrimination cases on Facebook 2017-01-29 13:44:58 -0600Sign the petition: Demand EEOC pursue LGBT job discrimination cases
On January 27, Slate reported that the EEOC may withdraw from a case involving job discrimination against Amiee Stephens, a transgender woman. New Commission chair Victoria Lipnic said "Administration-related changes" were the reason.
1. Send your own email to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission at email@example.com and urge the Commission to continue pursuing cases of LGBT job discrimination.
2. Sign the petition. If we reach or exceed 1000 signatures, we will deliver them to the Nashville EEOC office.388 signatures
We urge you to continue viewing job discrimination against gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people as sex discrimination under Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. In particular, you must continue to pursue the case of Amiee Stephens and other cases like it.
Your own report indicates there were 1768 charges of anti-LGBT job discrimination in 2016. In many states, there are no explicit protections for LGBT workers. Without your efforts, LGBT people are often defenseless against job discrimination. You must continue to pursue these cases.
Thank you for considering our views.
An open letter from Tennessee's LGBTQ community to our fellow Tennesseans
As members of the LGBTQ community, we write to our fellow Tennesseans a month after the election and a month before the upcoming state legislative session.
In recent weeks members of our community have experienced grave assaults on our safety and dignity. A gay, gender nonconforming man was murdered. A transgender woman’s car was burned. The signs and doors of a church that affirms our community have been vandalized. A gay couple received a package with a knife sticking out and a message attached urging them to leave the state.
These attacks upon individuals and institutions have put our lives and safety at even greater risk than usual. They contravene the welcoming traditions of hospitality for which Tennessee is known.
The time we have entered is critical. Many are calling for healing in the wake of a divisive election. Healing is difficult while fresh wounds are being inflicted such as discriminatory state legislation.
So we are speaking out for our safety, dignity, and equal rights under the law.
Our struggle is not against your values, unless you value discrimination. LGBTQ Tennesseans are your neighbors, your family members, your health care providers, firefighters, grocery clerks, teachers, elected officials, and we fill many other roles vital to the life of small towns and large cities. Many of us grew up and continue to be active in the same faith communities as you.
In the long story of our community’s struggles, we have relied on our own strength to sustain us. We have also experienced the joy of working with countless allies. Now is a time for allies to speak out with us and we invite people of good will throughout the state to build a stronger, inclusive, welcoming Tennessee to meet our state’s common challenges together.
If you share these values and priorities, we invite you to add your name to this letter.
Dakerri Barber-Rhone signed Give Nashville businesses a gender-neutral bathroom option 2016-06-03 11:39:24 -0500
In April the owners of the Wild Cow and Graze restaurants added gender-neutral signs to their single occupancy restrooms, but they were later told that this move meant they were no longer in compliance with the Metro code. They made the move to serve their customers and employees and to protest the Legislature's bathroom bill that was pending at the time. You can read about the background here.
Metro Nashville Councilman Brett Withers has filed a bill allowing businesses the option of gender-neutral bathrooms. You can read the bill at this link. The bill is up for second of three readings on June 7 at the 6:30 Metro Council meeting in the Metro Courthouse.
Sign the petition to show your support.150 signatures
We ask that the Metropolitan Government of Nashville and Davidson County adopt BL2016-238 by Councilman Brett Withers and give Nashville businesses a gender-neutral bathroom option. This bill comes at the request of a local business and it is the right legislation for customers and employees. Thank you for considering our views.
Dakerri Barber-Rhone posted about No Discrimination in Federal Contracts! on Facebook 2016-05-20 08:49:03 -0500The U.S. House of Representatives is trying to gut President Obama's non-discrimination executive order. Fight back!
In late April the U.S. House Armed Services Committee voted to undo President Obama's non-discrimination executive orders for federal contracts via the Russell amendment. This amendment is part of the National Defense Authorization Act.
Removal of the President's executive orders on non-discrimination would be a disaster for LGBT people in states like Tennessee that lack employment protections covering sexual orientation and gender identity.
Please, sign this petition to Tennessee's two U.S. Senators and nine members of the U.S. House of Representatives and we will make sure copies are sent to their offices.554 signatures
Dear Senators Alexander and Corker and Representatives Roe, Duncan, Fleischmann, Desjarlais, Cooper, Black, Blackburn, Fincher, and Cohen:
We oppose the Russell amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act and similar efforts to reverse President Obama's executive orders on employment non-discrimination for federal contractors. Protection against discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity is important to Tennesseans. Thank you for considering our views.
Dakerri Barber-Rhone posted about No special legislative session for bathroom discrimination! on Facebook 2016-05-18 10:24:17 -0500I oppose a special legislative session for discrimination. Will you join me?
On the evening of May 17, The Tennessean and The Commercial Appeal reported that legislators are considering a special legislative session to take up a new effort to pass a statewide anti-transgender bathroom discrimination law. Sign YOUR name to the statement below and we'll deliver your signatures to legislative leaders:1,074 signatures
Dear Speaker Ramsey and Speaker Harwell:
We oppose a special legislative session to consider an anti-transgender bathroom discrimination law. It is never justified to spend the state's time and money to advance discrimination. Thank you for considering our views.
Dakerri Barber-Rhone endorsed 2016-05-03 19:34:45 -0500
Please, take action about Senate Bill 1912 that defunds the University of Tennessee-Knoxville's Office for Diversity and Inclusion.
Call Governor Haslam at 615-741-2001 and ask him to Veto Senate Bill 1912 and defend diversity. It's fine to leave a message.
Tweet him @BillHaslam with #VetoSB1912 .
When you have called or tweeted, let us know you did it with this form. NOTE: You don't have to live in Tennessee to participate.Endorse
Target's trans-inclusive policies are under attack in Tennessee. A Mt Juliet pastor's rant went viral and this week at a Hendersonville Target, protesters shouted religious wrath at employees and customers. But we know that Tennessee loves Target and it's time to show it!
As former TEP Board member Ellyahnna Hall (pictured) notes:
"I support Target for trying to provide a safe space for all people. I'm a trans woman and I've faced the dangers of not having access to restrooms that corespond to my gender identity. If opponents are really concerned with safety then let's focus on tougher rape laws and enforcing those, not creating a fake danger that doesn't exist."
Sign the petition statement and show Target some love. We'll deliver hard copies of the petition to select Target locations in Tennessee.
Tennessee loves Target. I support the company's transgender-inclusive policies and I will continue to shop at their stores.
Dakerri Barber-Rhone posted about Defend Diversity at UT-Knoxville: Veto SB1912 on Facebook 2016-04-21 21:22:50 -0500Sign the petition: Defend Diversity at UT-Knoxville: Veto SB1912
The Legislature passed SB1912/HB2248 that removes funding from the Office for Diversity and Inclusion at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville. Sign this petition that we will deliver to Governor Haslam asking him to veto the bill.2,096 signatures
Governor Haslam, we call on you to veto SB1912/HB2248 and protect the University of Tennessee-Knoxville's Office for Diversity and Inclusion. The office plays a vital role in making the university competitive for the best students, faculty, and staff and it makes campus life welcoming for all. Thank you for considering our views.
Dakerri Barber-Rhone endorsed 2016-04-18 22:49:21 -0500
On April 18, 2016 about 30 pastors shamefully stood in Legislative Plaza and spoke in favor of the anti-transgender student bathroom bill. And religion was used to advance the counseling discrimination bill. Many more clergy across Tennessee publicly opposed both bills.
Whether you're religious or not, aren't you tired of religion being used to support discrimination in our laws? If so, endorse this statement:
We oppose the use of religion to justify discrimination in Tennessee law. To use religion to divide us in our public life violates the spirit of the U.S. and Tennessee Constitutions, does harm to the people of Tennessee, and brings scandal to religion.Endorse
Dakerri Barber-Rhone posted about Governor Haslam, Keep listening and oppose HB2414 on Facebook 2016-04-14 12:45:46 -0500Sign the petition: Governor Haslam, Keep listening and oppose HB2414. Will you help us get more signatures?
Sign this NEW petition urging Governor Bill Haslam to keep listening to the voices opposed to the anti-transgender student bathroom bill!1,533 signatures
Governor Haslam, please continue to oppose HB2414 and listen to the voices of transgender students and the business community speaking out against the bill. Thank you for considering our views.
Dakerri Barber-Rhone posted about I asked Governor Haslam to veto HB1840, the counseling discrimination bill on Facebook 2016-04-12 13:31:50 -0500I contacted Governor Haslam and urged him to #VetoHB1840. Will you?
Take a minute to contact Governor Bill Haslam by phone message or on Twitter and then let us know you did it using this form. Let's get to 500 or more!
I called or Tweeted Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam and urged him to veto HB1840, the counseling discrimination bill. I'm asking you to do the same this week.Endorse
Dakerri Barber-Rhone signed VETO Hate Bill 1840, the Counseling Discrimination bill 2016-04-08 21:24:41 -0500
Please, add your voice and urge Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam to veto this discriminatory bill.4,239 signatures
Dear Governor Haslam,
We urge you to veto HB1840, which allows counselors to turn away clients based on the counselor's biases and values. This bill puts the focus on the desires of counselors rather than on the needs of clients, damaging the counseling profession and putting clients at risk.
An anti-bullying amendment was stripped from the bill in the House Health Committee leaving youth vulnerable in areas where mental health services are not widely available.
Thank you for considering our views.
Dakerri Barber-Rhone posted about Governor Haslam, Fight for trans students and against SB2387/HB2414 on Facebook 2016-03-21 20:44:52 -0500Sign the petition: Governor Haslam, Fight for trans students and against SB2387/HB2414
Please, join us in encouraging Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam to fight against this attack on transgender students.985 signatures
Dear Governor Haslam,
We call on you to do everything in your power to lobby against passage of SB2387/HB2414, the anti-transgender student bathroom bill. We also ask that you VETO the bill if it reaches your desk.
The bill endangers vulnerable students and it risks significant U.S. Department of Education funds to Tennessee. If this bill became law, the enforcement would be a nightmare for school districts across the state.
Show the world that Tennessee is a welcoming state. Thank you for considering our views.