Wednesday, May 16, 2018

OutRight Honors LGBT Activists

OutRight Action International honored the Arab Foundation for Freedoms & Equality (AFE), with the Felipa De Souza Award at the organization’s annual Celebration of Courage gala held at Current at Chelsea Piers in NYC. The award was accepted by Georges Azzi, AFE Founder & Executive Director who stated, “We acknowledge that there is still a lot to be done before we reach an acceptable & more just situation for our community & our societies. Homosexuality is still illegal & people are being tortured & killed for being who they are. We are grateful, humbled & even more determined now to keep our voices heard loud & clear. It is now, more than ever, that we need to unite to overcome the tightening on individual liberties that is still happening worldwide.” Netflix’s new Queer Eye Karamo Brown hosted the event & shared the stage with OutSpoken Award recipient Lois Whitman. The OutSpoken Award recognizes an ally who has taken a clear stand for LGBTQ rights, often with some personal risk involved. Whitman stated, “Lawmakers & school administrators have increasingly recognized that LGBT kids are vulnerable in schools & many have put in place policies to protect kids. But the progress is uneven. Many states that have ordered protections, but they are inadequate or unenforced.” Jessica Stern, Executive Director of OutRight Action International concluded, “To borrow a metaphor from Karamo, if you want to travel back in time to 2000 or earlier, to invisibility & lack of legal rights, all you have to do is get on a plane. Walk out of this room, go to JFK & fly to the countries where OutRight works. You will see the hardship, you will remember how far we’ve come & you will want to do something urgently.”
For More Info: outrightinternational.org
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