COLUMBUS, Ga. — The local LGBTQ community in the Chattahoochee Valley wants to know where they stand locally and in America.
COLGAY Pride hosted its 6th Annual Equality for All Town Hall Meeting Saturday at the Columbus Public LIbrary. Topics ranged from transgender rights, adoption, and marriage equality.
Jeremy Hobbs is the director of COLGAY Pride. He served as the moderator for the forum. He says there’s still a lot of work to do when it comes to giving a voice to the LGBTQ community and recognizing their contributions to society.
“[It] makes us reflect and ponder everyday where do we stand in America, with core issues like transgender rights, adoption, marriage equality and religious freedoms?” Hobbs asked the audience. “The time has come for our citizens and leaders to stand together united.”
Panelists expressed their worries, fears and concerns regarding an uncertain future. Some panelists gave statistics on the HIV AIDS epidemic around the state and even in the Fountain City. The audience then had a chance to ask questions and give their thoughts and opinions. Some people were concerned about the possible rollback of every expansion of rights under federal nondiscrimination law.
Others feared that hateful opportunists would exploit certain vulnerabilities within the LGBTQ community to turn others against them. COLGAY Pride will host another open forum in the near future to discuss other issues and possible solutions to some of the problems that the LGBTQ community may face down the road.