On Sunday, March 21, Equality Florida will recognize Congresswomen Debbie Wasserman-Schultz (D) and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R) for their bipartisan support of Florida’s lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community. The congresswomen will be honored as recipients of the “Voices for Equality” Award at Equality Florida’s 2010 Miami Gala at Miami’s River Lounge.

A steadfast champion for Florida’s LGBT community, Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman-Schultz served on the Advisory Board for Florida’s Vote No On 2 campaign to defeat the 2008 “marriage amendment.” She has supported the passage of federal hate crimes protections, the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), the Domestic Partner Benefits and Obligations Act, and the repeal of “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.”

Wasserman-Schultz is co-founder of the US Congress’s first-ever LGBT Equality Caucus, which is an effort to extend civil rights, repeal discriminatory laws, eliminate hate-motivated violence and improve health for all, regardless of sexual orientation and gender identity. During the Caucus’ launch, she stated, “Equality for our gay, lesbian and transgender friends is not negotiable.”

Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen has an exemplary record in support of LGBT equality. She is also a member of the LGBT Equality Caucus and helped to pass the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act that specifically offered protections to LGBT people for the first time in US history. She is the lead Republican sponsor on the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), the Domestic Partner Benefits and Obligations Act and the Military Readiness Enhancement Act, seeking the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” among other LGBT bills she supports.

The Equality Florida Miami Gala features a State of the State Address by Nadine Smith, Equality Florida’s Executive Director and an elegant cocktail reception.

Equality Florida Miami Gala takes place at the River Lounge in the Epic Hotel, 270 Biscayne Blvd., Miami. Tickets are $125.. For more information, visit http://eqfl.org/miamigala/ or call Stratton Pollitzer at (954) 682-6094.

Equality Florida is Florida’s statewide human rights organization dedicated to the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people. Through education and advocacy, the organization is committed to building a state of equal rights for all Floridians, inclusive of all sexual orientations and gender identities.

Equality Florida is Florida’s statewide human rights organization dedicated to the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people. Through education and advocacy, the organization is committed to building a state of equal rights for all Floridians, inclusive of all sexual orientations and gender identities.


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