Persad Center, Inc. and the Greater Erie Alliance for Equality Announce Town Hall

Rights and Responsibilities: Legal Issues for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender (LGBT) Community

Wednesday, May 30 2012
6:30pm
21 la rue dix
21 W. 10th Street
Erie, PA 16501
(866) 229-1974

Two of Erie County’s newest support and advocacy organizations team up to sponsor an evening of information and conversation for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender community.

“Rights and Responsibilities: Legal Issues for the LGBT Community” is a Town Hall featuring a panel of guest speakers providing the most up-to-date information in the areas of crime, hate crime and LBGT discrimination, as well as family, estate and financial laws affecting the LGBT community.

Persad Center’s Community Safe Zone project director Ted Hoover:  “The legal landscape for the LGBT community has changed and continues to change at a rapid pace.  Persad and GEAE have put together this evening to offer an overview of where we are in 2012: What the law does –and doesn’t – say regarding protection for the community and how we can work with law enforcement and government agencies to create a safe and equitable community for all Erie citizens. I’m excited that so many key players in this field will be joining us.”

Speakers include: Special Agent Denise Holtz from the Civil Rights Division of the FBI will be discussing the Mathew Shepard/James Byrd III Hate Prevention Act which, in 2009, made hate crimes directed toward the LGBT a federal offence.  Though the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania does not offer LGBT hate crime protection, agent Holtz will outline how the Shepard/Byrd has been created to keep LGBT Pennsylvania’s safe.

Additionally, local and state law enforcement will be on hand to offer advice on how to stay safe and what to do if you become a crime victim.

Many people don’t realize that 70% of Pennsylvania’s LGBT population live without any legal protection against discrimination.  In most areas of the state is it legal to fire someone because he is gay, to evict a lesbian tenant, to deny public accommodations to the transgender.

Fortunately Erie County’s Human Relations Commission does offer legal protection to the LGBT against discrimination in employment, housing and public accommodation. Erie County’s HRC Executive Director Joe Aguglia will discuss what is covered under the Erie Human Rights ordinance, how to file a complaint and how action on the complaint in followed through.

Legal advice will be offered by local lawyers with information about current laws affecting the LGBT community; adoption, wills, medical directives, estate and financial planning.

“Rights and Responsibilities: Legal Issues for the LGBT Community” is free and open to everyone in the community.

ABOUT THE SPONSORS

Persad Center, Inc.  Founded in Pittsburgh in 1972, Persad Center is one of the nation’s trailblazers in offering professional counseling services specifically for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals, couples, parents and families, youth and seniors. In addition to providing counseling services, Persad is committed to eliminating LGBTQ discrimination by working with others to create welcoming and affirming environments that value diversity. Persad Center is very pleased to be part of the Northwest community, having recently opened a satellite center in Erie.

Greater Erie Alliance for Equality, Inc.  It is the mission of GEAE to help bring the LGBT community and its straight allies together through social events, educational programs and informational opportunities designed to strengthen our voice and enhance our image in the region

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