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June 2021: Pride Month

WHEREAS, Michigan is home to an estimated 373,000 residents who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ+); and,


WHEREAS, Michigan's LGBTQ+ residents contribute to the fabric of our society, hold positions in every sector of our economy, and live in every corner of our state; and,  


WHEREAS, Michigan has been at the forefront of advancing civil rights for LGBTQ+ people beginning with the nation's first non-discrimination ordinance passed in 1972 in East Lansing and the nation's first Civil Rights Commission to independently recognize that discrimination "because of sex" includes sexual orientation and gender identity in 2018; and,


WHEREAS, I, Governor Gretchen Whitmer, called on the Legislature in my very first State of the State Address to pass legislation to expand the state's Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act to include protections from discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identification in employment, education, housing, and real estate as well as use of public accommodations and public services; and,


WHEREAS, I signed Executive Directive 2019-09 to expand these same protections for LGBTQ+ state employees and have also issued a statement of support regarding the Supreme Court's historic ruling on LGBTQ+ protections, which deemed that the 1964 Civil Rights Act protects gay, lesbian, and transgender individuals from discrimination based on sex; and,


WHEREAS, despite local non-discrimination protections and recent protections extended by the Michigan Civil Rights Commission, there exists no state or federal anti-discrimination laws to protect LGBTQ+ individuals from being fired, denied housing, or refused service; and,


WHEREAS, during the COVID-19 pandemic, LGBTQ+ individuals and communities have faced unique challenges, including higher rates of self-reported underlying health conditions, according to a report released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and experiencing higher rates of job loss compared to non-LGBTQ+ individuals; and,


WHEREAS, Michigan's economic vitality depends upon welcoming people of diverse backgrounds, ending discrimination, and attracting and retaining top talent from around the world; and, 


WHEREAS, Michigan must continue to support the rights of every citizen to experience equality and freedom from discrimination, and recognize the continued need for education and awareness to end discrimination and prejudice; and,


 WHEREAS, June 2021 is the 52nd anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising in New York City, which is recognized as a catalyst for the modern LGBTQ+ Civil Rights Movement with the first stone being thrown by Marsha P. Johnson, a trans woman of color; and,  


WHEREAS, Michigan celebrates LGBTQ+ individuals during this month, and we also recognize the important work that must be done across intersections to create a more equitable state for all identities;


NOW, THEREFORE, Gretchen Whitmer, governor of Michigan, and Garlin Gilchrist II, lieutenant governor of Michigan, do hereby proclaim June 2021 as Pride Month and encourage everyone to take a stance against discrimination and reject violence toward LGBTQ+ individuals; to promote self-affirmation, dignity, and equality; and to continue to work toward building a community that promotes diversity, liberty, and justice for all.