This June is a poignant moment in the history of New York City. Fifty years ago this month, brave LGBTQ+ New Yorkers fought back against homophobia, institutional violence, and oppression at the Stonewall Inn in Greenwich Village. The courage and unwavering resolve displayed by the demonstrators — led by Black and Latinx transgender New Yorkers – during those fateful nights in the heat of summer became the catalyst for the modern LGBTQ+ rights movement in the United States and around the world.
On the fiftieth anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising, we must never forget that Pride Month is not only a celebration of love, equality, justice, and the vibrancy of the LGBTQ+ community, but it is also an opportunity to recommit ourselves to the fight for social justice.
While we celebrate love, the Trump Administration actively celebrates bigotry and discrimination. This administration has already turned its back on the LGBTQ+ community by banning transgender people from the military, allowing health care providers to deny care to LGBTQ+ people, and throwing up obstacles for LGBTQ+ couples to adopt children.
Enough is enough. We will not sit back and let Washington trample on the progress we’ve fought so hard for. That’s why across New York City, we will protect the LGBTQ+ community from violence and discrimination, and make sure everyone has a fair shot to make it here.
We must remember that people of color are disproportionately impacted by anti-LGBTQ+ violence, particularly transgender New Yorkers who are far more likely to experience homelessness, sexual assault, and domestic abuse. And LGBTQ+ people continue to be denied equal treatment, services, and are physically or verbally harassed just because of who they are.
These are important issues that we must tackle in our time to advance the cause of equality for all time.
We’ve made so much progress in New York in the past few months alone. Thanks to the tireless efforts of advocates, Governor Cuomo, and legislators in Albany, our state banned conversion therapy for youth, anti-transgender discrimination, and gay and trans panic defenses. Mayor de Blasio announced a monument will be built honoring Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera, and the City also designated six sites as historically significant LGBTQ+ landmarks.
As Comptroller, I am proud to work to advance equality for LGBTQ+ New Yorkers by mobilizing other pension fund investors to speak out against discrimination and to ensure corporate diversity efforts explicitly include the LGBTQ+ community. And I remain committed to centering LGBTQ+ New Yorkers across the many functions of my office because our society is stronger when diverse voices are at the tables of power.
This month, I’m proud to be joining fellow New Yorkers across this city to celebrate our diversity and the vibrancy of our LGBTQ+ community to send a clear message: here in New York City, we won’t stop until we recognize the inherent dignity and humanity of all regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity.
On Monday, my office released an updated 2019 LGBTQ+ Guide to Services and Resources – the most comprehensive directory of LGBTQ+ organizations and programs in New York City. This year’s guide is dedicated to the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising and coincides with the City hosting WorldPride for the first time in the United States.
On Tuesday, I had the honor of presenting four special awards to trailblazers in the LGBTQ+ community as part of our WorldPride and Stonewall 50 Celebration at Macy’s in Herald Square including Bianey Garcia, Trans Pride March Organizer and Community Organizer at Make the Road New York; Amit Paley, CEO and Executive Director of The Trevor Project; Mickey Heller, Co-Chair of Brooklyn Pride, Inc., and Kenneth Sherrill, Political Science Professor (left to right).