October 2019 Round Table Discussion
Summary from our October Round Table Discussion on LGBTQ…Inclusivity:
Some struggle with how to talk to family members who are not accepting or inclusive.
It's important not to make people of the LGBTQ community feel marginalized or non-existent.
We need to approach others through the eyes of love.
Acceptance is not the same thing as inclusive. You can accept/allow someone to be a part of your community but not actually include them as a valued member.
Sometimes it's fear that keeps people from truly being open to LGBTQ inclusivity.
Many in the LGBTQ community spent their early years trying to live the life they were "expected to or supposed" to live.
There are probably many who have gay/lesbian family members that they won't acknowledge or don't know how to relate to them.
There are still many who don't understand and are not open to understanding.
When people try to rely on certain Biblical passages to demonize LGBTQ community, they disregard what Jesus taught about loving all.
Some people try to say it's a choice but there were kids we knew growing up who we now know were born gay.
It is important to have social organizations that can provide support for members of the LGBTQ+++ community that are ostracized.
Young people struggling with sexual orientation need persons to listen as they sought out their feeling/confusion.
Teachers can find educational material on GLSEN (Gay and Lesbian Network), to better understand their students who are part of the LQBTQ+++ community.
Even though many are accepting of the LGBTQ community, people are still reluctant in the work place in fear of job lost – many members of the LGBTQ community have started their own businesses to avoid such plight.
Some members of the LGBTQ community identify themselves by color while others would rather a person ask “What is your pronoun?”
The importance of social organizations providing support the LGBTQ community: It is a safety zone for persons shun from family as well as those who would be outcast from religious entities.
Importance of family support for young people: There are some young people who are confused and misunderstood due to a lack of a listening ear or closed-minded parents. For instance, someone shared about a mom who was ready to evict her daughter who announced she was gay. This young lady did not even understand what it meant to be gay until someone listened.
We also talked about the constant scrutiny that transgender children go through in school with the use of bathroom facilities. One recommendation was educating teachers through GLSEN (Gay and Lesbian Network).
Identity protection in the workplace: Not all employers are opened to working with members of the LGBTQ community – even though some cities have non-discrimination laws in place, some do not have any ordinances in place while others are in the beginning stages of addressing those issues. Someone shared about a life changing event when a boss questioned this person sexuality. This individual boldly answered yes to being gay and realized that that acknowledgement was a coming out statement. With concerns for future employment issues this individual started a business and has been an entrepreneur for many years.
Identity: some us learned that members of the LGBTQ community sometimes identify themselves by color while others would rather be asked, “What’s your pronoun?”