Today Equality Federation celebrates the launch of OutNebraska, formed from OutLinc, Lincoln’s LGBTQ community center, which will serve as a statewide organization to secure fairness and equality for LGBTQ+ Nebraskans and their families.
Abbi Swatsworth, who has been involved with Outlinc for more than five years as a volunteer leader will be the organization’s first full-time Executive Director, and will begin her work alongside the OutNebraska Board of Directors and volunteers building statewide power. The organization has already been connecting with local LGBTQ and allied leaders across the state who are enthusiastic about this new statewide mission. OutNebraska is launching a series of community listening sessions in communities across the state to create an open dialogue about how to prioritize the work to bring Nebraska’s laws up to date so that they reflect the values of fairness and equality that Nebraskans already hold dear.
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“I’m so excited to partner with my fellow Nebraskans from – Nebraska City to ScottsBluff – to ensure our state is a shining example of fairness and equality for all our families, including those who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender.” Swatsworth said. “There’s a lot of work to do. We need to update our laws so that no one is kicked out of a restaurant, denied housing, or fired from a job simply for being who they are. We also need to restrict the dangerous and discredited practice of so-called conversion therapy, to name a few.”
Rebecca Isaacs, Executive Director of Equality Federation said, “It’s time for the rest of the nation to hear from the tenacious leaders in Nebraska! We are proud that OutNebraska has formed as a statewide advocacy organization and look forward to them joining the Equality Federation family soon. Through this partnership we will support each other’s work to create fairness and equality for Nebraskans and all Americans.”
Nebraska Senator Adam Morfeld shares, “As a policymaker I am excited we will now have an organization working statewide every day to organize and advocate on behalf of LGBT equality, and bring meaning to the words inscribed in our capitol, “Equality Before the Law.” This will change the game when it comes to LGBT advocacy in the state.”
OutNebraska will provide a consistent voice for LGBTQ Nebraskans in the Unicameral, educating legislators about the vital needs of the community and will work across the state to empower and celebrate their communities.