ACF LGBT Pride Month Event

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Washington, D.C.

ACF LGBT Pride Month Event

Welcome everyone, thank them for coming.

I want to Thank Lt. Applegate, Dianne Offett, Lori King, Sara Moomaw, Julia Conte, and Paige Ellen Hausburg for their work to bring you this panel discussion today.

You know, when President Obama proclaimed June 2013 as LGBT Pride Month he said: “This year, we celebrate LGBT Pride Month at a moment of great hope and progress, recognizing that more needs to be done. Support for LGBT equality is growing, led by a generation which understands that, in the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., ‘injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.’"

Even at ACF it is incumbent upon us to root out injustice in our programs and just as important to fix or eliminate any inequities or shortcomings in the delivery of the services we provide.

Poverty, joblessness and child abuse don’t discriminate. They may not affect every community equally, but they affect every community.

Because of this we must take care to reach out to all who are need of our services. The President’s Ladders of Opportunities to help struggling families make it into the middle class are meant for all families, even LBGT families.

It is important for us to have these discussions to determine what we do, and do not, know about the effects of homelessness and poverty, among other issues, within the LGBT community.

Our programs and services are available to ALL Americans who qualify based on need or circumstances.

Today, we hope to start a broader dialogue about the need for services within the LGBT community, how best to do outreach and to drive better understanding and communication between ACF and the LGBT community.

We need to define the human service issues affecting the LGBT community.

Then, we need to determine this agency’s strengths and gaps in addressing those issues.

Then we need to build on those strengths and close the gaps.

We need to identify who in the community needs services.

And, we need to determine when they need those services, and finally, we need to determine how best to deliver the services.

And as you go through your discussions today, remember the words of that wise philosopher Lady Gaga:

“Don’t hide yourself in regret,
Just love yourself and you’re set,
I’m on the right track, baby
I was born this way…….”

And with that, I’d like to turn it back over to Paige Ellen Hausberg.

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