Denver, Colorado 2021-06-09 23:24:01 –
Denver — The Colorado General Assembly concludes with the State Capitol. It could be one of the most diverse parliamentary groups in history.
When we celebrate Pride Month, Denver7 sits down with some members of the LGBTQ Caucus about how we got here, their unique interests and important issues for their members. I thought.
“We are very proud to represent the General Assembly,” said D-Denver Rep. Leslie Herrod. “We have Latino queer members, bisexual and transgender, gay and lesbian members, so we believe we really reflect our community.”
Herod is Colorado’s first African-American LGBTQ elected civil servant.
She has worked to pass legislation prohibiting discrimination based on hairstyle and police reforms.
Herod says her sexuality did not interfere with her career, but it pushed it forward.
“Because I represent many different experiences, it gave me the ability to have honest conversations with many different kinds of people,” Herod said.
It is these living experiences that diversify the conversations that take place between the decision makers of the State Capitol.
“I have a colleague I often work with on business issues that I wrote down on. Basically, he was wrong, so I’m sorry to push forward with the anti-trans, anti-LGBTQ bill. It’s not who he is, he won’t do it again, “Herod said.
D-Arvada’s Rep. Brianna Titone was elected in 2018 and chairs the LGBTQ caucuses.
“My personal experience as a transgender, how people treat and abuse me, and how people talk to me personally, I can tell others about them. You can, “said Titone.
Her main focus is not on transgender, but on her members.
“What I want to know is getting the job done, focusing on what people are talking about, and working really hard for the members,” Titone said.
In this session, she has sponsored more than 12 legislation, including a bill requiring insurers to cover their annual mental health tests.
Freshman member David Ortiz, Congressman D-Littleton, is openly bisexual. He forced the State Capitol to confront the long-deferred change.
“People in wheelchairs didn’t have access to the floor of the State Capitol until I was elected,” Ortiz said.
Ortiz flew a helicopter for the Army, overcame a crash and was paralyzed from the waist down. He is a veteran and an advocate for the LGBTQ community.
“As caucuses and legislative leaders, we hope to reach out to the community more and to guide and support undervalued people,” Ortiz said.
Ultimately, each legislator hopes to have more LGBTQ legislators elected in the future to work for a safer and more acceptable community.
According to the Victory Institute, there are 843 LGBTQ civil servants in the United States, the highest ever.
Still, these numbers need to be increased by about 20,000 to properly represent the LGBTQ population in the country.
“I don’t want to be the first and only. I want to be the first with many other people who come behind me,” Titone said.
Each member we spoke to said he welcomed conversations from anyone thinking about the future of politics.
LGBTQ lawmakers reflect on growing diversity at the state Capitol Source link LGBTQ lawmakers reflect on growing diversity at the state Capitol