The Human Rights Campaign the largest, and most inept LGBTQIA+ in the United States has settled a lawsuit brought against it by former President Alphonso David after he had alleged racial discrimination in his firing, the two sides said on Wednesday.
David was fired in September 2021 after New York state Attorney General Letitia James issued a report saying that David had advised former Governor Andrew Cuomo about dealing with sexual harassment allegations, while heading HRC. David was identified as having been involved in efforts to undermine Cuomo’s first accuser, Lindsey Boylan.
According to David’s LinkedIn profile, he was president of Human Right Campaign for two years. He had spent over eight years prior to that working for Cuomo’s office – first as counsel for civil rights and then as chief counsel.
After the report was released In a lawsuit filed last spring in the Eastern District of New York, Mr. David described a “toxic workplace” at the Human Rights Campaign, where “nonwhite staffers were marginalized, tokenized and denied advancement to high-level positions” before his ascent. He also said that he had been underpaid compared with his white predecessor. The “underpaid” Mr. Davis’ salary was $517,269 compared to his predecessor Chad Griffin who made $570,446 . After 5 years at the helm. (Financials info available at HRC Annual Reports page. )
The Human Rights Campaign denied those claims in documents filed before a federal judge, saying that Mr. David had manufactured allegations of racial bias “rather than take responsibility for his behavior that did not live up to H.R.C.’s values and mission.
Despite of this In a joint statement on Wednesday, the Human Rights Campaign and Mr. David said that they had chosen to “amicably resolve” the lawsuit out of court and that the terms of the settlement were confidential.
“Mr. David and H.R.C. agree it is in their mutual best interests, and the interests of the communities that they serve, to put this matter behind them,” the statement said.
While the exact settlement is confidential be sure that Mr Davis had a payout in the millions.
This is where your HRC donation money goes. Bloated salaries, Galas and lawsuits.
No equality. Just embarrassment and much head shaking.
The Human Rights Campaign, that gala throwing, money sucking LGBT “advocacy” group that has done jack-shit over the past few year to advance the civil rights of LGBT people. Today launched ‘The Real Mike Pence’, a multi-pronged campaign exposing the vice president’s anti-LGBT history and views that we all are already aware of to prove they are actually doing something and still relevant so they can beg for more money.
The “campaign” highlights Pemce’s support of “gay conversion therapy” (We all know that already); his pursuit of a ‘religious freedom’ license to discriminate against LGBT people (We all know that already); and his attempts to block hate crime legislation and funding for HIV and AIDS prevention. (And yes. We all know that already.)
Said HRC President Chad Griffin: “Mike Pence has made a career out of attacking the rights and equal dignity of LGBT people, women and other marginalized communities. Now as vice president, he poses one of the greatest threats to equality in the history of our movement.”
In reality there are many who think that the grossly overpaid Griffin ($450.000.,00 a year + benefits) and the HRC which has won not attempted to or won any real battle for the pursuit of LGBT civil rights in over the past decade is also one of the greatest threats to equality in the history of our movement because the do nothing while making believe that they do.
Watch their video. Because this is how they justify the millions of dollars of your donation money a year while doing nothing of any worth to the LGBT movement.
Please consider donating to Lambda Legal or grassroots LGBT organizations. The ones who do the REAL work of fighting for our rights.
Long-time LGBT activist, journalist, author and talk radio host Michelangelo Signorile has come out swinging at Chad Griffin and the Human Rights Campaign for their political endorsement of GOP Senator Mark Kirk over Democratic challenger Tammy Duckworth despite the fact that Duckworth has a higher Equality Index score in HRC’s own ranking report and HRC’s ridiculous excuse that the believe the only way to pass any further pro-LGBT legislation is by a bi-partisan vote. A theory which is not only flawed but dangerous to the LGBT community and will drag the fight for equality out for another 20 years.
The simple truth is that in 2016 in Illinois we don’t need Mark Kirk — he needs us. Kirk is in a deep blue state and he absolutely must support full LGBT equality in order to win. His coming out for the Equality Act is not brave; it’s about his own survival. And the first vote he’ll take upon winning back his seat will be a cowardly one to make the anti-gay McConnell (with an HRC score of 0) the Senate Majority Leader again.
There’s no question that the Democrats’ path to taking back the Senate very much includes defeating Kirk, who is in the bluest state among those where GOP senators are embattled. So HRC’s action does raise questions about how committed the group really is to seeing the Democrats take back the Senate, and if it perhaps has conflicting interests. Daily Kos’s David Nir surmised that HRC’s Kirk endorsement is all about keeping “donations flowing from corporations and wealthy gay Republicans,” and he may be on to something.
If HRC is not answerable to LGBT people, however — and its president, Griffin, rarely even gives interviews to LGBT media, while speaking often in the larger media — exactly to whom and what is it answerable, and what are its true priorities? One thing is clear: HRC doesn’t speak for the LGBT community, and the sooner that politicians and those in the media grasp that, the smarter they will be.
You can read Michelangelo Signorile’s full piece by CLICKING HERE
During the protest on the steps of the Supreme Court during the SCOTUS DOMA hearing, members of the LGBT organization GetEQUAL faced some unsettling discrimination.
As anyone who has protested or joined a rally for LGBT rights knows, there are always protesters. Usually they are holding signs saying how God hates gays and that all gays are going to hell for being sinners. Well during the DOMA protests, transgender members of GetEQUAL faced discrimination from a group that they thought would be the last group in the world to discriminate, especially against transgender individuals..
According to an independent blog, O-blog-dee-o-blog-da , members of GetEQUAL were flying a trans flag outside the Supreme Court building on the DOMA day and placed near the podium. C.D. Kirven, GetEQUAL board member, was waving that trans flag most prominently when GetEQUAL, who were challenging Westboro Baptist Church, were told to remove their flag by members of the HRC. The HRC’s reason behind requesting GetEQUAL members to remove their flag was because they said Marriage Equality was not a “transgender issue”.
According to another website, The Bilerico Project, blogger Jerame Davis, who was at the event, reported the following on his blog:
Through the bustle and the crowd, I could discern that the HRC staffer was discussing the transgender equality flag the young man was waving. It was clear the staffer wanted him to move or to stop displaying the flag. It was also clear that the young trans man holding the flag was at the edge of his training (and his wits) in dealing with the situation as was the staffer. The HRC staffer moved on just as we got within speaking distance, so we asked the man with the flag what had happened.
He told us that the staffer had been harassing him about his flag and that he wasn’t going to move. He told us the staffer had stopped on three occasions to ask him to move or stop displaying the flag. He also mentioned that the staffer had denigrated trans issues in some manner, but I know this staffer and I cannot imagine they have any sort of anti-trans animus, so I chalked that up to a misunderstanding.
Since I first heard this story reported from a Tumblr post, I have been trying to get clarification on it. When the story first broke on Twitter via the Tumblr post, I found no other supporting information on the net to verify this happened. I spoke to a friend who is a huge supporter of the HRC, and although I feel his opinion was bias, he stated that he would couldn’t believe for a moment that the HRC would act in this manner.
Based on his reaction combined with my inability, at the time, to find information online to support this story, I decided I would email GetEQUAL and asked for clarification. I sent them an email on Thursday March 28. I mentioned in the email about what I had heard and sent them the Tumblr link I had found the story on. I asked them if any part of this story were true and if it were in fact the Human Rights Campaign that was involved in this. As of today, Sunday March 31, I hadn’t received a response back. I decided that I would send them a follow up email today asking again for clarification in the story. I told them in today’s email that I had heard that it could have been two possible organizations named HRC. One being the Human Rights Coalition and the other being of course the Human Rights Campaign. I did some research on the Human Rights Coalition, and from what I found, they are an advocacy group located in Pennsylvania who fights for the right of prisoners, not a group I would expect to be present during the DOMA protests. I have also decided I will be sending an email to the Human Rights Campaign asking for clarification in this story as well. Once I receive a response, if any, from either organization, I’ll make sure I pass it on to our readers on Back2Stonewall.
As I told GetEQUAL, unity and support of all is the only way we can move forward in our fight for LGBT rights.
I have received an update on this story. Today, Monday April 1, I received a response from the Human Rights Campaign. Yesterday after posting the article above, I decided to send an email to the HRC requesting clarification on the incident I reported about a member requesting a several transgender activists of GetEQUAL to remove their flag and also asking na “undocumented” activist was asked to edit his speech to hide part of who he is.
In the email to the HRC, I asked them if it were true that members of their organization were involved in the story reported above. Honestly, I didn’t even expect a response from the HRC. To my surprise, earlier today I did get an email in response to my email asking about the situation. This is what Jason Lott (Jason.Lott@hrc.org) emailed me the following as the HRC’s explanation to what had happened:
“Thank you for contacting the Human Rights Campaign with your concern about last week’s Supreme Court rallies.
In the midst of a tremendously historic week for our community, two unfortunate incidents at the United for Marriage event at the Supreme Court last week have caused pain in the community. In one case, a trans activist was asked to remove the trans pride flag from behind the podium, and in another, a queer undocumented speaker was asked to remove reference to his immigration status in his remarks.
HRC joined in a coalition statement on Friday apologizing for these incidents and the individuals involved have personally offered their apologies to those affected. But to be perfectly clear, HRC regrets the incidents and offers our apologies to those who were hurt by our actions. We failed to live up to the high standard to which we hold ourselves accountable and we will strive to do better in the future. Through both our legislative and programmatic work, HRC remains committed to making transgender equality a reality.
Thank you again for taking the time to contact us with your perspective. If you would like to read more about HRC’s work on transgender issues, please visit http://www.hrc.org/issues/transgender. And if you have any additional questions or concerns please do not hesitate to contact us.
The HRC Member Services team”
I have to be honest and say at first, I was impressed with the speed of their response, that is until I realized that this was basically a “stock”, “PR” response that they probably sent to everyone who has inquired about this situation.
Lets back this whole situation up a bit. When this situation first happened and the story broke, the HRC signed on to the United For Marriage Coalition in an apology for the mistreatment of Trans and Undocumented Activists. According to The New Civil Rights Movement, the HRC – a part of the coalition that also includes the National Gay & Lesbian Task Force, Family Equality Council, GetEQUAL, Marriage Equality USA and the New Organizing Institute – signed on to a group apology, and then issued a separate statement DENYING that the mistreatment occurred. The statement/apology signed by the coalition stated –
“Since the conclusion of the rallies on Wednesday, the coalition has learned about the mistreatment of a few individuals who were attending and speaking at the rallies,” United For Marriage’s statement notes:
In one case, a queer undocumented activist was asked to edit his speech to hide part of who he is. In another case, several activists were asked to lower the trans* pride flag in order to keep out of the scope of TV cameras.
We apologize for having caused harm to the individuals involved. Apologies are being made individually and collectively and we are working to make direct amends.
After this statement was released by the Coalition, the HRC decided to backpedal, retracting their apology and actually denying any wrongdoing even happened! The HRC issued a separate statement stating –
“It was agreed that featuring American flags at our program was the best way to illustrate this unifying issue which is why when managing the area behind the podium, several people were asked to move who were carrying organizational banners, pride flags or any other flag that was not an American flag. Several people refused and they were allowed to stay. The coalition welcomed the variety of signs and flags that were throughout the plaza that demonstrated the wonderful diversity of our community.
“It is a not true to suggest that any person or organization was told their flag was less important than another – this did not occur and no HRC staff member would ever tolerate such behavior. To be clear, it is the position of the Human Rights Campaign that marriage is an issue that affects everyone in the LGBT community.
“The events at the Court featured lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender speakers as well as LGBT families, religious leaders, Republicans, military spouses and civil rights activists. This has been a historic week and truly demonstrated how all of us – lesbian, gay, bisexual and straight, transgender and cisgender – can unite as one voice to advocate for our constitutional rights.”
How can anyone in the LGBT community trust the Human Rights Campaign at this point? In my opinion, they acted like children who were caught red handed getting into trouble. They gave a false apology and then lied to the very people they “claim” they are protecting and fighting for. In my opinion, I have lost all respect for the HRC. When I sent them the email last evening requesting clarification, I was hoping they would take the human approach and be honest and truthful. All I received was a stock, public relation answer to placate me. What they didn’t expect, or simply don’t care about is that that readers of Back2Stonewall as well as all of the rest of the LGBT community are intelligent individuals that can see right through the HRC’s lies and public relation B.S.
I sent them a response stating that they answer was not good enough for me or the readers of this blog or the listeners of my podcast. I specifically told them that I wanted to know why they thought they could get away with treating fellow advocates in this manner and then denying it! I asked them if they have given proper discipline to the HRC members involved.
I am sad to say that I highly doubt I will hear a response at this point. Sadly, the HRC does not value my concern in this situation. This should show the entire LGBT community what type of organization the HRC really is. They are not concerned with the “everyday” LGBT advocate like myself. Since I am unable to donate large sums of money, my concern and opinion are worth very little to them. They made it incredibly obvious, in my opinion, that they value their LGBT followers very little since they can lie to us so easily.
I have made a point that I will not longer support the HRC until they come out clean and act like the honest organization and decent human beings as they should act.
Today by an overwhelming majority of 40-10 the GOP-dominated Indiana Senate voted to add a ban on same-sex marriage and civil unions in the state constitution joining Ohio as having one of the strictest state DOMA laws on the books.
We knew it was coming. Its been on the LGBT news and LGBT blog circuits for weeks.
My question is where the hell was the Human Rights Campaign and The Task Force and what, if anything did they do or even try to do to stop this from happening?
Did they organize petitions? Letter writing campaigns? Protests? Phone call swarms to the Indiana Reps? As far as I know the answer is no.
You see the Gay Inc on the National level would never dirty their hands fighting in Middle America. After all they have a hard enough time in Washington DC. But you can bet that if it was Californian, New York, or Washington, DC that had a gay marriage ban set for a vote they’d be all over it. And there would be press releases and petitions flying because it makes good press (and is good for donations) and besides who cares about Middle America right? Even though Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky, Kansas, Iowa and also the South is where this where the homophobic hate breeds and where many anti-gay hate groups start.
So while HRC sits in their 8 Million dollar office building in Washington DC, and readies the sacrilegious HRC “gift shop” in Harvey Milks Camera Store in San Francisco and “The Task Force” is busy working on their next “Creating Change Conference” which really creates no change really but does make a nice chuck of change for The Task Force and makes it seem like they are actually doing something, today in Indiana Lesbians and Gays were officially deemed again as second class citizens in Indiana.
Until those who claim that they lead us and gleefully accept millions upon millions of gay dollars every year to supposedly fight for our rights refuse to get out of their ivory office towers and stop throwing gala’s and learn to throw down and FIGHT in the places where the hate festers, breeds and spreads like cancer outward there will be no change, and we will never win our rights.
Human Rights Campaign vice president Fred Sainz (aka The Stain) in a talk with Metro Weekly today doesn’t seem to think it matters if President Obama addresses any LGBT Issues during tonight’s State of the Union Address:
“The State of the Union is just that. It is not an exhaustive accounting of all the administration’s priorities or responsibilities over the year.’. He added, “There are plenty of other speech opportunities that the president has over the year.”
So there you have it straight from the HRC. It doesn’t matter if Obama addresses DOMA or ENDA to the HRC. Why would it. The longer our Equality the longer they have their well paying jobs and benefits. And for your information Sainz. the LGBT Community IS part of the UNION.
But you can bet your ass that if by some off chance Obama DOES mention any Gay issues I’ll bet anything that you’ll have an email from your INBOX from HRC within minutes taking the credit for it and asking for DONATIONS.
“Harvey Milk spent the last years of his life fighting not only for rights for gays and lesbians across the nation, but also against the idea that the only way to achieve those rights is to lobby the government and financially support so-called ‘straight allies’. Harvey believed the best way to secure our rights was through grassroots action, coalition building and the election of LGBT people to office at all levels of government. He encouraged people to come out of the closet and be vocal about who they were and why they deserved full equality, not partial equality or crumbs. For the HRC leadership, which still advocates a piecemeal, wait-and-see approach to try and co-opt and profit from Harvey’s legacy is an outrage.” – Dustin Lance Black lambasting the Human Rights Campaign for planning to move in and have a gift shop at the late San Francisco activist’s Castro street camera shop
Edith (Edie) Windsor and Thea Spyer shared their lives together as a committed couple for 44 years. They became a couple in 1965, got engaged in 1967, and married in Canada in 2007, after it became legal. When Thea died in 2009, the federal government refused to recognize their marriage and taxed Edie’s inheritance from Thea as though they were strangers. Under federal tax law, a spouse who dies can leave her assets, including the family home, to the other spouse without incurring estate taxes. Because of a law called the Defense of Marriage Act, or DOMA, the federal government refuses to treat married same-sex couples, like Edie and Thea, the same way as other married couples. This case points out that it is a denial of the equal protection principles of the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution for the federal government to pick and choose which marriages it will recognize for federal purposes, when it otherwise leaves that question entirely up to the states
This new action specifically addresses married couples in Connecticut, Vermont, and New Hampshire, and comes on the heels of a Massachusetts Federal District Court ruling this summer finding DOMA Section 3 unconstitutional.
In Pedersen et al. v. Office of Personnel Management, GLAD represents five married same-sex couples and a widower who have all been denied federal rights and protections simply because they are married to a person of the same sex.
”Getting married was extremely meaningful to Ann and me,” said Joanne Pedersen, who, with her spouse Ann Meitzen, is a plaintiff. “We were shocked to discover that the federal government essentially looks on ours as a second-class marriage.”
Filed in Federal District Court in Connecticut, this suit addresses DOMA’s denial of marriages in connection with federal employees and retirees benefits programs, Social Security benefits, survivor benefits under federal pension laws, work leave to care for a spouse under the Family Medical Leave Act, and state retiree health insurance plans that are controlled by federal tax law. Several plaintiffs who have paid additional federal income taxes because they cannot file a joint federal tax return as a married couple will join the suit once they are officially turned down for refunds from the IRS.
This is the way to do it. I’ve always said that. To the courts. NOT at the voting machines. It’s nice to see that we are learning from our past mistakes.
Now lets pray to god that Human Rights Campaign DOES NOT get involved AT ALL and knows enough to keep its mouth shut and tries not to take credit for this like it did with the Prop 8 lawsuit it badmouthed in the beginning but embraced when it won. (Remember that?)
Never one to pass up a quick buck today the HRC hit a new low by offering for sale a purple plastic “HRC.ORG End Bullying” bracelet that has 100 percent of the proceeds going to……you guessed it the HRC’s fight for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality and the HRC ALONE.
NO PROCEEDS to the Trevor Project or even to a related anti-bullying campaign. But 100 PERCENT of the proceeds to the HRC.
So send your money to the HRC and receive a nifty bracelet and help support thie\\eir 8 Million dollar headquarters, or Joe Solmonese’s or Fred Sainz’s obscenely bloated salaries. Or send your money to actual worthwhile LGBT Bullying and Suicide prevention agencies that REALLY NEED THE MONEY. Like The Trevor Project and the The JED Foundation,
As for HRC you are DISGUSTING and should be ASHAMED of yourself. Words just fail me to describe just how horrible and ghoulish it is that you are trying to make money off bullied and dead LGBT teens.
Many thanks to Mike Petrelis of The Petrelis Files for reporting on this disgusting move by the HRC.