LGBT & Allied Latinos Raise Voices for Marriage Equality in Key States

LGBT Latinos and in many cases, their friends and families, are doing lots of great media work in states where the population will be asked to vote on marriage equality Nov. 6.

Community leader Martha Zuniga in Washington recently participated in a televised debate on marriage equality on Seattle’s local Univision news. She was terrific.  Click here to see the debate

Zuniga and her partner Laura Pedroza met in their native Mexico over 22 years ago. Together they emigrated to the United States in search of a safer environment in which to live and grow together as a couple—without the discrimination and harassment they suffered in Mexico.

In Minnesota, one of the key leaders has been Juventino “Juve” Meza, who leads Latino outreach for Minnesotans United for all Families, a coalition working to ensure the state’s voters reject an amendment banning marriage equality. Juve was born in Mexico and came to the U.S. at the age of 15. He has a very traditional, Catholic, Mexican family and was afraid to tell them, but especially his dad, that he’s gay. But when Meza finally did, his father surprised him by saying that he hoped Juve would always remember that his family would never turn its back on him. His father has even been a supporter of the marriage campaign.

Juve and other marriage equality leaders including Javier Morillo, have been telling their stories in Spanish-language media, including on “A Rienda Suelta” hosted by Estela Lerma on La Mera Buena 107.5 FM. They also worked to ensure the cover of a local Spanish-language magazine, Vida Y Sabor, featured a young lesbian DREAMer and her supportive mom.

Lots of folks are working hard in Maryland, from David Perez of The Latino GLBT History Project, Ruben Gonzales, of National Council of La Raza and local couples like Boe Ramírez and Germán Roa of Rockville, MD, who have been partners for over 17 years. You can see ads they recently made at: http://www.casademaryland.org/familia-es-familia

Maryland’s leading Latino and immigrant advocacy organization, CASA de Maryland, has been instrumental in the campaign to approve Question 6 and have been featured widely, including in a story that ran in the Washington Post.

Visit GLAAD’s Washington, Minnesota and Maryland vote pages for up to date information, and GLAAD’s voting page to familiarize yourself with the issues.

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