PFLAG—Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays—was founded by Jeanne Manford in 1972. A Queens schoolteacher, Manford was committed to ensuring that her gay son received the same treatment that her straight daughter did. In a time when being LGBT was criminal, Manford's action was undeniably bold and important.
This weekend, Manford—who died in January at the age of 92, was honored with a plaque placed by the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation in the Church of the Village (formerly Duane United Methodist Church) where the first PFLAG meeting was held. Later this year the plaque will be affixed to the church's exterior. Today, PFLAG has over 350 chapters in all 50 states.
Present at the ceremony was Rev. Vicki Flippin, a minister at the Church of the Village, who was also present at the interfaith service for marriage equality held during the SCOTUS hearings last month. Rev. Flippin is part of a group of Methodist ministers who have pledged to perform marriages for all couples, regardless of sexual orientation.
GLAAD celebrates the work of Manford, and is happy to know that a reminder of her legacy will help us remember how far we have come, and how pivotal acts of courage and integrity can be in making communities safer for LGBT people.