Category Archives: LGBTQ

“We’re Here to Stay!”

Detroit’s immigrants, Muslims, LGBTQ and Communities of Color honor Dr. King with a message of defiance and unity

Hundreds of people from across Southeast Michigan gathered at UAW Local 600 Saturday afternoon to honor Rev. Dr. Martin L. King Jr. in a show of unity across lines of color, gender, ethnicity, religion and immigration status. Michigan United joined the United Auto Workers and community based groups in a mass call to action to defend the rights of immigrants, refugees, communities of color and the members of the LGBTQ community. In addition to the King holiday, groups cited the well documented rise in hate crimes in Michigan since the presidential election as inspiration for the event.

“We have no doubt that Reverend King would be pushing us to stand with people who are under attack because of their immigration status, the color of their skin or who they love,” said Michigan United member, Reverend Samuel Johnson of Pleasant Grove Missionary Baptist Church. “Mobilizations like this are crucial to show that the majority of people will not tolerate hate crimes and attacks. The fight to keep immigrant families together is connected to the fight to keep all families safe.”

The Congress of Communities, Chadsey Condon Community Association, Michigan Regional Council of Carpenters and Washtenaw Interfaith Coalition for Immigrant Rights worked with members of the LGBTQ community to host the event. The intersection of struggles and resistance was at the heart of the gathering.

“Some victories such as marriage equality or the Deferred action on Childhood Arrivals (DACA) which protects immigrants brought here as children are recent,” said Seydi Sarr, General Secretary of the Senegalese Association. “Some, such as the 1960s civil rights legislation are decades old. We stand to defend them all. We fight to keep immigrant families together here in the US, for refugee families fleeing violence to be safe here. We must defend human and civil rights won for the LGBTQ community and people of color. We can win if we see that all these struggles are connected.”

“No event, not even a presidential election will stop us from standing up and fighting for human and civil rights,” said Sergio Martinez, Michigan United board member. “As Gay man who has benefited from DACA and advances in LGBTQ rights, I refuse to go backward just as Dr. King and those who fought with him resisted the backlash against civil rights laws. Those of us fighting for justice are the majority. Making that clear with gatherings like this will push us toward victory.”

Michigan United Kicks off Series of Events for New Detroit ID Program

Mayor’s office works with community groups to promote “Detroit-ID”

Michigan United and a host of other community groups launched a series of community events called “ID’s For All,” to promote “The D-ID” card that the city will issue in mid-November. On Friday, dozens of Detroit residents attended the event with many questions about the soon to be available municipal IDs. They wanted to know who qualifies, as well as how, when and where to apply. Most of these residents have difficulties getting a state ID and were very enthusiastic about the prospect of applying for a city identification.

One of those residents was a mother who has lived in the city for 16 years and had a terrible experience at a local clinic due to the lack of a state ID. “This week I went to a local clinic and they refused to give me treatment because my Michigan ID is expired, even though I was ready to pay for the full cost of care.” said Bertha Aviles “It has been impossible to renew my ID and there are thousands of people in the city who have difficulty getting a state ID. We are all humans and deserve to be treated when we are sick. This should not happen to anyone and I am hoping that the new Detroit IDs will help prevent this situation from ever happening again.”

Although it was designed specifically for residents who have difficulty getting a state ID (such as youth, the elderly, returning citizens, immigrants, and members of the  LGBTQ and homeless communities), all Detroit residents, 14 years old and older, will be eligible to apply.

ACCESS, Asian and Pacific Islander American Vote (APIA Vote), the International Institute and Latin Americans for Social and Economic Development (LA SED) are also hosting information sessions on the new municipal ID program. If you have questions about the new ID or would like to find out how to apply, please come to one of the following events near you.

“IDs for All” Event Schedule for 2016

Community Org. Date Time Address
International Institute Oct. 4 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM 111 E. Kirby St. Detroit, MI, 48202
Michigan United Oct. 5 7:00:00 PM – 8:00 PM 4405 Wesson St. Detroit, MI 48210
LASED Oct. 12 7:00 PM – 8:00 PM 7150 Vernor Hwy. Detroit, MI 48209
ACCESS Oct. 13 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM 7800 W. Outer Dr. Detroit, MI, 48235
ACCESS Oct. 14 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM 2651 Saulino Ct. Dearborn, MI 48120
International Institute Oct. 18 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM 111 E. Kirby St. Detroit, MI, 48202
LASED Oct. 26 7:00 PM – 8:00 PM 7150 Vernor Hwy. Detroit, MI 48209
International Institute Nov. 1 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM 111 E. Kirby St. Detroit, MI, 48202
LASED Nov. 5 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM 7150 Vernor Hwy. Detroit, MI 48209
ACCESS Nov. 11 10:00 AM – 2:00 pm 8625 Joseph Campau Ave. Hamtramck, MI
ACCESS Nov. 14 10:00 am – 2:00 pm 7800 W. Outer Dr. Detroit, MI, 48235
ACCESS Nov. 15 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM 2651 Saulino Ct. Dearborn, MI 48120
International Institute Nov.15 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM 111 E. Kirby St. Detroit, MI, 48202
LASED Nov. 16 7:00 PM – 8:00 PM 7150 Vernor Hwy. Detroit, MI 48209
ACCESS Dec. 9 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM 8625 Joseph Campau Ave. Hamtramck, MI

 

Interfaith Vigil for Orlando Victims, Families, Survivors

Diverse gathering of LGBTQ, faith leaders, community leaders and elected leaders

Detroit’s LGBTQ community was joined by a variety of clergy, community leaders and an elected leader at Clark Park Monday evening in the wake of the recent tragedy in Orlando. Islamic and Christian clergy spoke and prayed together along with community leaders from ACCESS, Sugar Law Center and State Representative Stephanie Chang. The theme of the event was to promote unity, love and faith based values to counter bigotry, hatred and extremism. 
The prayer vigil will take place at 6 this evening at the Clark Park Band Shell near the west side of the Park. 

 

Rashida Tlaib of Sugar Law Center
Rashida Tlaib of Sugar Law Center

“We must embrace one another across divides of faith, gender identity and color to counter violence and extremism,” said Rashida Tlaib of Sugar Law Center. “We gather here today to pray for the victims of the Orlando mass murder and for their loved ones in this very grim hour and we gather to say we will not succumb to bigotry and hatred no matter the source whether it’s from outside or inside our nation.” 

The prayer vigil in Southwest Detroit featured a wide slate of speakers including Rev. Dr. Jill Zundel, Central United Methodist Church Rev. Jack Eggleston, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Southeast, Rev. Marcia Ledford, Episcopal Church of Detroit, Hassan Sheikh, Michigan Muslim Community Council, Rachid Elabed, Arab Community Center for Economic and Social Services Adonis Flores, Michigan United, State Representative Stephanie Chang and Detroit City Council Member Raquel Castañeda-López

 

Rev. Juan Perez Latino Missioner for Episcopal Diocese of Michigan
Rev. Juan Perez Latino Missioner for Episcopal Diocese of Michigan

“As a person of faith and a member of the LGBTQ community it’s very heartening to see people from across the spectrum of faith, color and gender identity stand against the type of intolerance and destruction we saw devastate the Orlando community,” said Rev. Juan Perez Latino Missioner for Episcopal Diocese of Michigan. “The intolerant, no matter their ideology or origin, cannot prevail against us as long as we are unified. Americans that are Muslims, Christians, Americans of Asian, Latino, Arab and African descent, we have power when we stand together and speak out to sustain one another beyond the devastation and work to prevent violence and division with unity.”