Monday, February 14, 2011
Happy Valentines Day!!!
SAVE THE DATE - Transgender Faith Action Week
Good day, ICTE supporters.
We want to thank you for your support, and invite you to be part of our exciting faith campaign this year. And if you’re local, we want to offer you our sympathies and best wishes for this Winter’s weather. It was good to see some of you at Transgender Equal Rights Action Day and its reception (hosted by The Crossing, ICTE, Keshet and Cambridge Welcoming Ministries) last month; we’re sorry that the snow made travel challenging for many.
We have all been saddened and frustrated by the Transgender Equal Rights Bill (formerly An Act Relative to Gender-Based Discrimination and Hate Crimes) not passing by the end of the last legislative session in July. But your support made a tremendous difference, and did much to help further understanding and social justice for transgender people.
The bill was refiled last month, and has been gathering legislative co-sponsors. We have every hope of passing it into law this legislative session. And your support and action remains a vital part of that work. We are continuing the An Act Of Faith journey we began a few years ago, and we hope that you will continue with us.
ICTE and Keshet, in partnership with the Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition (MTPC) and MassEquality, are organizing a very exciting faith campaign for the bill. The centerpiece is a Transgender Faith Action Week -- Sunday, April 3rd through Sunday, April 10th. Later in the Spring, we’ll be organizing a faith-themed press conference, as well as clergy speakers at the bill’s hearings and Lobby Days at the Statehouse. There will be many opportunities for action – especially calls, emails and letters to legislators, as well as written testimony for hearings.
Please save the date now for Transgender Faith Action Week, and think about how your faith community can participate! There are many ways to participate, and we welcome your ideas. Our primary focus is helping congregations and other faith communities organize “postcard parties”. Green postcards (orange last year) that support the bill are signed by voters and delivered to both of their legislators. We intend to distribute, collect and deliver large amounts of postcards from congregations, clergy, lay leaders and other people of faith – to show the Statehouse just how much the Massachusetts faith community supports transgender equality.
Participating communities will receive a packet of materials and instructions, as well as “tech” support from the faith campaign team. They will also have the option of being listed (for free) in all of the week’s publicity – including newspaper ads in Bay Windows and Rainbow Times.
The ICTE leadership and MassEquality staff will be contacting congregations over the next few weeks. We will also be offering some live and video educational presentations about transgender people and the bill.
Thank you again for your support! We look forward to partnering with you to further transgender equality this year and beyond.
Interfaith Coalition for Transgender Equality