Honoring the resilience and strength of LGBTQ+ activists during the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall riots.
June is LGBTQ+ Pride Month, and Planned Parenthood of Southern New England (PPSNE) is proud to reaffirm its commitment to protecting the rights and health of the LGBTQ+ community in Connecticut. This year, during the 50th anniversary of the iconic Stonewall uprising in New York City—widely considered a defining moment in the modern LGBTQ+ rights movement—we celebrate the work of activists who continue to fight for equality and justice for all people.
Alongside coalition partners CT Equality, PPSNE advances policies that make Connecticut safer and more equitable for members of the LGBTQ+ community. During this legislative session, PPSNE and its allies supported HB 6540, which helps remove barriers for youth to access the HIV prevention pill PrEP, and SB 58, which prohibits defendants from claiming that a violent act was triggered by the revelation of a victim’s gender, gender identity/expression, or sexual orientation. Both bills have passed the General Assembly and await the signature of the Governor.
PPSNE and CT Equality were also instrumental in making Paid Family and Medical Leave legislation more inclusive by incorporating language recognizing “chosen families,” acknowledging that many LGBTQ+ individuals face rejection from their biological relatives and must forge families on their own. The coalition also advocated for the establishment of an LGBTQ+ health and human services network—the first of its kind formed by legislative action in America—which was included in the state budget passed by the General Assembly.
“While we celebrate the progress of LGBTQ+ rights in this state and across the country, we must keep the legacy of Stonewall alive and continue to fight back against legislation and hateful rhetoric that promotes discrimination and injustice on the basis of gender identity, expression, and sexual orientation,” said Gretchen Raffa, Director of Public Policy, Advocacy and Strategic Engagement. “We won’t stop fighting until we achieve true equality and reproductive freedom for every member of the LGBTQ+ community. Politicians cannot decide how someone expresses their identity, what someone does with their body, or what their family looks like.”
Despite the advancements of the LGBTQ+ rights movement, LGBTQ+ people of color and those with low incomes are disproportionately impacted by discriminatory practices, beliefs, and behaviors. And, the Trump-Pence administration continues to implement policies that harm our most vulnerable communities and promote prejudice. Title X, the nation’s only family-planning program, remains under threat and a new “conscience” rule announced last month would allow health care providers to refuse to provide medical treatment to patients—even in emergencies—based on their personal beliefs. These attacks will make it increasingly difficult for members of the LGBTQ+ community to access the services they need.
Planned Parenthood of Southern New England strives to provide health care that is inclusive and respectful of all genders, identities, and sexual orientations with a goal to make every patient feel welcome, comfortable, and cared for. Every family is unique, and every family deserves to be supported, recognized, and valued. LGBTQ+ communities face greater obstacles to accessing essential reproductive services—PPSNE is proud to serve this need by providing high-quality, nonjudgmental health care and information for all people at 17 health centers in Connecticut and Rhode Island.
During Pride month, PPSNE is proud to participate in Fairfield County’s Pride in the Park on Saturday, June 8 in Norwalk and Middletown’s inaugural pride celebration on Saturday, June 15. PPSNE is also a sponsor of Rhode Island PrideFest, one of New England’s largest pride celebrations, held in Providence on Saturday, June 15.
For more information or to make an appointment, visit ppsne.org or call 1-800-230-PLAN (7526).