Val Burgess

  • donated 2016-05-28 21:19:27 -0500

    Give OUT Days in Tennessee

    $880.00 raised
    GOAL: $3,000.00

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    The TEP Foundation is celebrating Give OUT Days NOW through 11:00 p.m. Central Time on May 20.  Make YOUR tax deductible investment in our programs that advance equality and inclusion and fight discrimination.  We are grateful for your support.

    Donate

  • signed No special legislative session for bathroom discrimination! 2016-05-17 22:55:52 -0500
    Val Burgess

    No special legislative session for bathroom discrimination!

    On the evening of May 17, The Tennessean and The Commercial Appeal reported that legislators are considering a special legislative session to take up a new effort to pass a statewide anti-transgender bathroom discrimination law.  Sign YOUR name to the statement below and we'll deliver your signatures to legislative leaders:

    1,073 signatures

    Dear Speaker Ramsey and Speaker Harwell:

    We oppose a special legislative session to consider an anti-transgender bathroom discrimination law.  It is never justified to spend the state's time and money to advance discrimination.  Thank you for considering our views.

    Add signature

  • signed No Discrimination in Federal Contracts! 2016-05-07 13:43:17 -0500
    Val Burgess

    No Discrimination in Federal Contracts!

    In late April the U.S. House Armed Services Committee voted to undo President Obama's non-discrimination executive orders for federal contracts via the Russell amendment.  This amendment is part of the National Defense Authorization Act. 

    Removal of the President's executive orders on non-discrimination would be a disaster for LGBT people in states like Tennessee that lack employment protections covering sexual orientation and gender identity. 

    Please, sign this petition to Tennessee's two U.S. Senators and nine members of the U.S. House of Representatives and we will make sure copies are sent to their offices.

    554 signatures

    Dear Senators Alexander and Corker and Representatives Roe, Duncan, Fleischmann, Desjarlais, Cooper, Black, Blackburn, Fincher, and Cohen:

    We oppose the Russell amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act and similar efforts to reverse President Obama's executive orders on employment non-discrimination for federal contractors.  Protection against discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity is important to Tennesseans.  Thank you for considering our views.

    Add signature

  • endorsed 2016-05-03 20:29:18 -0500

    I asked Governor Haslam to veto SB1912 and defend diversity at UT-Knoxville

    Please, take action about Senate Bill 1912 that defunds the University of Tennessee-Knoxville's Office for Diversity and Inclusion.

    Call Governor Haslam at 615-741-2001 and ask him to Veto Senate Bill 1912 and defend diversity.  It's fine to leave a message.

    OR

    Tweet him @BillHaslam with #VetoSB1912 .

    When you have called or tweeted, let us know you did it with this form.  NOTE:  You don't have to live in Tennessee to participate.

    Endorse

  • endorsed 2016-05-03 10:51:01 -0500

    Counseling Unconditionally

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     Tennessee HB1840, the Counseling Discrimination bill, highlights the need for counselors, therapists, psychologists, psychiatrists, and social workers to speak out for inclusive practices.  We urge any practitioner to endorse the statement below.  Those who endorse will be listed on our website and receive a Tennessee Open For Business window cling for display in their offices. If you would like to support programs like this, make your tax deductible contribution at this link.

    As counselors, therapists, psychologists, psychiatrists, and social workers serving clients in Tennessee, we affirm that we do not discriminate based on sexual orientation or gender identity and we will not use our own sincerely held principles as a reason to turn clients away. 

    Endorse

  • signed Tennessee Loves Target 2016-05-03 01:02:10 -0500

    Tennessee Loves Target

    ellyahnnaTarget.jpgTarget's trans-inclusive policies are under attack in Tennessee.  A Mt Juliet pastor's rant went viral and this week at a Hendersonville Target, protesters shouted religious wrath at employees and customers.  But we know that Tennessee loves Target and it's time to show it!

    As former TEP Board member Ellyahnna Hall (pictured) notes:  

    "I support Target for trying to provide a safe space for all people. I'm a trans woman and I've faced the dangers of not having access to restrooms that corespond to my gender identity. If opponents are really concerned with safety then let's focus on tougher rape laws and enforcing those, not creating a fake danger that doesn't exist."

    Sign the petition statement and show Target some love.  We'll deliver hard copies of the petition to select Target locations in Tennessee.


                                

    1,050 signatures

    Tennessee loves Target.  I support the company's transgender-inclusive policies and I will continue to shop at their stores.                                               

     

     

    Add signature

  • signed Defend Diversity at UT-Knoxville: Veto SB1912 2016-04-21 20:59:07 -0500
    Val Burgess

    Defend Diversity at UT-Knoxville: Veto SB1912

    The Legislature passed SB1912/HB2248 that removes funding from the Office for Diversity and Inclusion at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville.  Sign this petition that we will deliver to Governor Haslam asking him to veto the bill.

    2,096 signatures

    Governor Haslam, we call on you to veto SB1912/HB2248 and protect the University of Tennessee-Knoxville's Office for Diversity and Inclusion.  The office plays a vital role in making the university competitive for the best students, faculty, and staff and it makes campus life welcoming for all.  Thank you for considering our views.

    Add signature

  • endorsed 2016-04-21 09:04:50 -0500

    Stop using religion to discriminate in Tennessee

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    On April 18, 2016 about 30 pastors shamefully stood in Legislative Plaza and spoke in favor of the anti-transgender student bathroom bill.  And religion was used to advance the counseling discrimination bill.  Many more clergy across Tennessee publicly opposed both bills.

    Whether you're religious or not, aren't you tired of religion being used to support discrimination in our laws?  If so, endorse this statement:

    We oppose the use of religion to justify discrimination in Tennessee law.  To use religion to divide us in our public life violates the spirit of the U.S. and Tennessee Constitutions, does harm to the people of Tennessee, and brings scandal to religion.

    Endorse

  • signed Governor Haslam, Keep listening and oppose HB2414 2016-04-18 10:56:05 -0500
    Valerie Burgess

    Governor Haslam, Keep listening and oppose HB2414

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    Sign this NEW petition urging Governor Bill Haslam to keep listening to the voices opposed to the anti-transgender student bathroom bill!

    1,533 signatures

    Governor Haslam, please continue to oppose HB2414 and listen to the voices of transgender students and the business community speaking out against the bill.  Thank you for considering our views.

    Add signature

  • endorsed 2016-04-12 09:18:51 -0500

    I asked Governor Haslam to veto HB1840, the counseling discrimination bill

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    Take a minute to contact Governor Bill Haslam by phone message or on Twitter and then let us know you did it using this form.  Let's get to 500 or more!

    I called or Tweeted Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam and urged him to veto HB1840, the counseling discrimination bill.  I'm asking you to do the same this week.

    Endorse

  • VETO Hate Bill 1840, the Counseling Discrimination bill

     

    Please, add your voice and urge Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam to veto this discriminatory bill.

    4,239 signatures

    Dear Governor Haslam,

    We urge you to veto HB1840, which allows counselors to turn away clients based on the counselor's biases and values.  This bill puts the focus on the desires of counselors rather than on the needs of clients, damaging the counseling profession and putting clients at risk. 

    An anti-bullying amendment was stripped from the bill in the House Health Committee leaving youth vulnerable in areas where mental health services are not widely available.

    Thank you for considering our views.

    Add signature

  • Governor Haslam, Fight for trans students and against SB2387/HB2414

    Please, join us in encouraging Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam to fight against this attack on transgender students.

    985 signatures

    Dear Governor Haslam,

    We call on you to do everything in your power to lobby against passage of SB2387/HB2414, the anti-transgender student bathroom bill.  We also ask that you VETO the bill if it reaches your desk. 

    The bill endangers vulnerable students and it risks significant U.S. Department of Education funds to Tennessee.  If this bill became law, the enforcement would be a nightmare for school districts across the state. 

    Show the world that Tennessee is a welcoming state.  Thank you for considering our views.

    Add signature

  • endorsed 2016-01-22 18:03:11 -0600

    The People's Resolution Opposing Tennessee House Joint Resolution 529 on Marriage Equality

    Sign on as a co-sponsor of the People's Resolution Opposing Tennessee House Joint Resolution 529 on Marriage Equality.

    WHEREAS, Rep.  Susan Lynn has introduced a resolution urging the members of the General Assembly of the State of Tennessee to express their disagreement with the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges; and

    WHEREAS, the Tennessee Constitution affirms "That the citizens have a right, in a peaceable manner, to assemble together, for their common good, to instruct their representatives, and to apply to those invested with the powers of government for redress of grievances or other proper purposes, by address or remonstrance;" and

    WHEREAS, the State of Tennessee ought to be focused on the legal equality of all its people rather than attacking the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender community; and

    WHEREAS, "the equal protection of the laws" is a cherished principle in American jurisprudence; now, therefore,

    BE IT RESOLVED BY THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF TENNESSEE, that we oppose House Joint Resolution 529 and urge the members of the 109th General Assembly of the State of Tennessee to uphold the entire Constitution of the United States, including the Fourteenth Amendment, and cease their legislative attacks on gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people.

    Endorse

  • wants to volunteer 2015-12-27 20:31:47 -0600

    Volunteer with TEP

    TEP needs volunteers throughout the year.  Please, fill out this form or contact us at chris@tnequalityproject.com for more information.  Thank you!

    Become a volunteer

  • signed up on Join our action alert email list 2015-11-02 16:39:30 -0600

  • wants to volunteer 2015-10-22 12:19:57 -0500

    Operation Sentinel: Volunteers monitoring discrimination in local governments across Tennessee

    With the recent passage of the Johnson County, McMinn County, Morgan County, and Greene County resolutions calling for the General Assembly to fight marriage equality, we need volunteers across the state to monitor discriminatory measures and actions in their local government.  Sign up to monitor one or more county governments.  It doesn't have to be the county in which you live.  After you sign up, we will contact you asking which county or counties you wish to cover.  We will hold a conference call with volunteers in the coming weeks to prepare you for this task and show you what to do. 

    When we monitor local government, we can more effectively organize against discrimination. 

    Note:  There is no need to sign up for Shelby, Davidson (Metro Nashville), Knox, or Blount Counties since these counties are already heavily monitored.

    Become a volunteer

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