We list here quick actions you can take to advocate for timely issues. Consult Contacting Elected Officials for guidelines on how to effectively communicate with key federal, congressional, and state officials as well as their contact information. For more long term advocacy opportunties, consult Volunteer and/or contact us.
Join the PFLAG Washington State Council
The PFLAG Washington State Council (WSC) is excited to be holding their biennial board election meeting during the National Convention in Portland, Oregon and is actively seeking new leadership. All positions (at-large and executive) are currently up for election including President, Vice President, Treasurer, and Secretary, and Director At-Large (five positions available). This is an opportunity to participate with PFLAG at the state level and provide fresh ideas, energy, and commitment as we work together to move equality forward.
If you are attending the PFLAG National Conference, you are welcome to join the biennial board meeting on Friday, October 20th, at 6:00 pm, in the Portland Piedmont Guest House, 5933 NE. Garfield Ave. Portland 97211. (Please note that you not have to attend this meeting to be elected to a position.)
Say NO to a military ban on transgender people
PFLAG National posted this statement on their Facebook wall: “In today’s military, there are brave transgender people serving our country openly and proudly with 134,000 retired veterans having done so with honor and sacrifice. The Commander-in-Chief demeans them with his latest tweetstorm proclamations. PFLAG stands proudly with them, their families and future transgender individuals who would put their lives at risk for all of us and our country. We urge everyone to call their federal elected officials and protest this dishonorable and offensive action.”
You can also take these actions:
- Use social media, such as Facebook and Twitter to oppose the ban and ask your network of family and friends to do the same.
- Write a letter to the editor opposing the ban. (Here are some guidelines.)
- Sign the ACLU petition against the ban.
Speak up for persecuted gay and bi men in Chechnya
Contact elected and political officials and request they speak out and take immediate action against these heinous violations of human rights.
- Call our Washington State Senators Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell.
- Write to United States Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley via the United States Mission to the United Nations using this form.
- Contact Secretary of State Rex Tillerson by email or forward a message by phone at 202-647-4000.
Contact the Human Rights Campaign by phone (202) 628-4160 or email and let them know you support their #EyesOnChechyna campaign and that you want this issue to be a top priority. You can also follow the #EyeOnChechyna campaign for up-to-date information.
Sign the Amnesty International petition, which they plan to deliver to the Russian Embassy in London.
Contribute to groups that are working on behalf of this issue. Here are some recommendations as a starting point but please perform due diligence before donating.
- Amnesty International is a global movement of more than 7 million people in over 150 countries and territories who campaign to end abuses of human rights.
- ILGA-Europe (European Region of the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association) is an international non-governmental umbrella organization bringing together 490 organizations from 45European countries.
- Rainbow Railroad focus efforts on assisting LGBT people who have faced physical violence or face an imminent threat of violence, imprisonment, or death. According to their executive director Kimahli Powell, after receiving initial reports of the persecution of gay and bi men in Chechnya, Rainbow Railroad immediately re-classified Eastern Europe as a priority region: “This means we’re expanding our on-the-ground contacts as well as increasing our capacity to identify and assess new or alternative safe routes out of Chechnya.”
- Russian LGBT Network is an interregional, non-governmental human rights organization that promotes equal rights and respect for human dignity, regardless of sexual orientation and gender identity. They unite and develop regional initiatives, advocacy groups (at both national and international levels), and provide social and legal services.