Miami Beach Commissioners approved two resolutions pertaining to LGBTQ History Month at its Sept. 14 city commission meeting.
The commission unanimously passed a resolution recognizing October as LGBTQ History Month in Miami Beach. A separate resolution, expressing disappointment with the recent decision by the Miami-Dade County School Board to ignore LGBTQ History Month, passed on a 5-1 vote with Commissioner Steven Meiner dissenting.
“I really feel it's important to stay in our lane,” Meiner said. “We are distancing ourselves and really causing ourselves in some ways to be irrelevant to bodies that we are very reliant on.”
Meiner and Commissioner David Richardson exchanged heated words over the resolution before Mayor Dan Gelber intervened and Meiner left the chambers.
“He’s building quite a record of voting against the LGBTQ community,” said Richardson, noting Meiner voted against naming a city street after slain gay rights leader Harvey Milk.
Commissioner Alex Fernandez said the resolution empowers parents and students to have their own conversations and decide how to engage in their schools.
“This is about history,” Fernandez said. “Recognizing that we have a history. That we exist.”
Gelber said he was offended by some of the behavior at the school board meeting.
“I feel very strongly that a school board shouldn’t enable and validate discrimination, it’s just wrong,” he said.
Miami-Dade School Board member Lucia Baez-Geller, the lone vote in favor of LGBTQ History Month, was invited by Gelber to give the meeting’s invocation.
“I hope that we continue to work so that nobody in our society feels less than,” Baez-Geller said.