Saturday, December 26, 2009

2009 proved hopeful for Florida LGBT activists

If one word could describe the mood of Florida’s LGBT activists over this past year it would be simple: Rebuilding. While the majority of eyes focused on California’s Proposition 8 last fall, Florida faced its own anti-marriage bill that strictly defined marriage as between one man and one woman and effectively banned any legally-recognized same-sex union with similar rights as marriage. The measure passed in Nov. 2008 with 62 percent of the popular vote and derailed any momentum Floridians had gained on the marriage issue.

Instead of taking their loss lying down, however, LGBT activists in the Sunshine State saw an opportunity to consider a new strategy toward legislative progress in their state, which ranks as one of the least equal in the nation because of its gay adoption ban, a lack of a statewide employment non-discrimination bill and other contentious issues. They have focused on local victories -- and these include the expansion of domestic partnership recognition in Miami and Tallahassee, the defeat of an anti-gay measure in Gainesville and expanded protections for Tampa’s transgender residents.

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Source: The Edge

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