Judy Shepard pens op-ed on Laramie’s new non-discrimination ordinanceAround the Nation, Online Only, Top Highlights Sunday, May 31st, 2015
“It’s been nearly 17 years since our son, Matthew, was brutally attacked in an antigay hate crime on the outskirts of Laramie, Wyo.,” she wrote. “The aftermath of Matt’s death and the worldwide attention it received cast a shadow over Laramie and all of Wyoming.”
Earlier this month, however, Laramie took a stand for LGBT equality when the City Council voted 7-2 in favor of the new non-discrimination ordinance. The ordinance prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity in housing, employment and public accommodations.
Shepard wrote, “Dennis and I are thrilled and inspired to see positive change for the LGBT community finally succeed at home.”
In her post, additionally, she took a stand for all LGBT Wyomingites, urging the state of Wyoming to prohibit discrimination in housing, employment or public accommodations based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
“Earlier this year, the state of Wyoming had yet another chance to ensure the rights of LGBT citizens were protected with a statewide antidiscrimination bill, but again the measure failed to pass,” she explained. “It is our hope that the citizens of Laramie can serve as an example for not only the rest of Wyoming, but other communities and states that continue to struggle with acceptance.”
Judy Shepard has served on the HRC Board of Directors since 2001. She and her husband, Dennis, were instrumental in the fight to pass the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act in 2009 and have appeared at HRC Foundation’s Time to THRIVE conference.
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