Equality Works: Looking Ahead

We hope that you've enjoyed the vacation from the marathon of public hearings we've had over the last month. The break in the action has given the Equality Works steering committee some time to reflect and consider our options as we prepare for the next round of hearings and the transitioning mayoral administration.


Who we are: Equality Works is a coalition of organizations to working to ensure that lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people are protected from discrimination in the Municipality of Anchorage. You can find a list of our member organizations here. At the head of the coalition is a steering committee/decision-making body currently made up of 11 community leaders and activists, mainly long-time Alaskans. We meet and communicate regularly to discuss and debate the most successful course for achieving our goal of protecting the LGBT citizens of Anchorage from discrimination. If you have any questions, concerns, or recommendations you'd like to share with the steering committee, feel free to respond to this post and I will make sure they get the message.

We have not given up: Many media outlets are sounding the death knell for any attempts to pass an ordinance to amend Anchorage's nondiscrimination law, but we are committed to making sure that the Municipality of Anchorage takes steps to protect LGBT people from discrimination by whatever political means is most effective. Until we have used every tool available to us, we will keep organizing for equality. If our opponents think that we have given up simply because we have a new mayor, their short-sightedness will work in our favor in the long run. They were mobilized for a sprint, but we are preparing for a marathon. Time is on our side.

We want the democratic process to continue. While opponents of equality succeeded in pushing the consideration of the ordinance into July and onto the plate of a new mayoral administration, they have not yet succeeded in killing the legislation. As I write this, the ordinance is still alive and we believe that we have the votes to pass a strong ordinance that protects all of us—transgender, lesbian, gay, and bisexual—without sacrificing employment rights. In short, we want our Assembly members to debate on ordinance 64 and take a vote. If we end up losing the votes, facing a veto, or facing the challenge of repeal by voter referendum, we will mobilize to win by other means. But as for now, we believe that this phase of the democratic process needs to play itself out. We hope that you are willing to stick with us for the long haul.


Contact Mayor-Elect Dan Sullivan
Mayor Sullivan has not yet stated publicly where he stands on the issue of equality for LGBT citizens. Tell him why he should support an ordinance that will help protect all Anchorage citizens from discrimination. Send him an e-mail at <mayor@muni.org>. Remember to be respectful!

Attend the Public Hearing on Tuesday, July 7th
Last week we encouraged more of our supporters to sign up to testify so that opponents of equality do not get the last word in front of the Municipal Assembly. Many of those who signed up still haven't had an opportunity to speak and it would be great if once they finally get to the microphone, the Assembly Chamber is filled with friends and allies who are there to support them. Where: Loussac Library, 36th & Denali. When: 5-11 pm (doors open at 3:00 pm if you want to make sure you have a seat)

Make a Donation to Equality Works
Whatever the end of the result of the Assembly hearings happens to be, Equality Works will need to work hard to advance or defend the rights of the LGBT citizens of Anchorage. The fight is just beginning. You can now support the efforts of Equality Works with an online donation.

Evaluate Us
What can we do to improve the way we operate? Take the Equality Works evaluation survey.

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