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Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission isn’t about cakes or weddings.

Masterpiece Cakeshop

Here’s the truth about today’s Supreme Court decision: It doesn’t actually change anything.

  • For generations, conservatives have been working to erode the rights and liberties of our communities, including LGBQ, transgender, gender expansive, women, POC, and religious minority communities.
  • Everyday trans and queer people, especially people of color, navigate a world where they experience intense discrimination;
  • A business in Colorado got away with blatant discrimination;
  • The complicated nature of the decision threatens to embolden the vocal minority that seeks to use religion as a tool for discrimination;
  • Ginsburg and Sotomayor’s dissents say that the Court should have upheld the Colorado commission’s finding that the bakery violated anti-discrimination law, because it was the correct decision—even though the process was problematic;
  • The effect of this decision is that non-discrimination laws across the country remain in effect.

Being turned away from a public place because of who you are is discrimination. As a nation, we decided long ago that when a business opens its doors to the public, it should be open to all. The embarrassment, shame, and fear that comes from being told, “Your kind doesn’t belong here.” We thought those days were behind us.

In 2013’s Elane Photography v. Wilcock decision, New Mexico’s Supreme Court decided that there is no right to violate the New Mexico Human Rights Act. We’ve already decided that there is no license to discriminate in New Mexico—we already closed that chapter of our history. We thought that we had enshrined laws that would keep people from being unfairly fired, evicted, or refused service simply because of who they are. The promise of equal treatment under the law should be a reality for everyone.

The Supreme Court reversed the decision based on concerns that the Colorado Civil Rights Commission had not acted impartially when considering the bakery’s religion‐based defense. While it is disappointing that the Court let the bakery’s discrimination here go unchecked, it did so only because of concerns unique to this case. Most importantly, the Court did not give businesses the broad right to discriminate that the bakery and the Trump administration sought here. Our nation decided more than 50 years ago that when a business decides to open its doors to the public, that business should be open to all. The Supreme Court today protected that core principle, expressly recognizing that states can seek to prevent the harms of discrimination in the marketplace, including against LGBT people.

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Equality New Mexico Announces Endorsements of Deb Haaland, Xochitl Torres Small; Incumbents Heinrich, Lujan 

ALBUQUERQUE, NM: In a first round of political endorsements for the 2018 election, Equality New Mexico, the largest LGBTQ political advocacy organization in the state, announced its support of Congressional candidates Deb Haaland (NM-1) and Xochitl Torres Small (NM-2), ), along with incumbent U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich and Congressman and DCCC Chair Ben Ray Lujan. (NM-3).

Haaland is running for the open Albuquerque area Congressional seat being vacated by Gubernatorial candidate Michelle Lujan Grisham, and if elected, would be the first Native American woman to serve in Congress. 

Of Haaland's endorsement, Executive Director Adrian N. Carver said, "Deb Haaland has exhibited the ability to run a winning campaign in the primary and into the general election. In a crowded field, she maintained a clear advantage in our community survey because she has long advocated for the self-determination of LGBTQ+ New Mexicans. Aside from directly aligning on our issues, Deb has demonstrated an ability to raise the money necessary to win and out-organized her opponents to win the Democratic Party's State Convention. Not only can she win this race, but Native American women deserve representation and a seat at the table in Washington. We look forward to Deb breaking that ceiling and leaving the ladder down for future generations of Native women."  

Torres Small is running for the sprawling open Congressional District 3 seat in the Southern part of New Mexico. 

Carver said, "The vacancy created by Steve Pearce's run for Governor creates a unique opportunity in Congressional District 2. We must assure all New Mexicans are represented in Congress by people who support their families and want to see them thrive. I'm confident that 2018 is a year that Xochitl will replace Steve Pearce’s hateful rhetoric and deliver the representation LGBTQ New Mexicans in District 2 deserve.”

"While we have two open congressional seats, ready for new voices, we count Sen Heinrich and Ben Ray Lujan as steadfast allies and among the strongest advocates for LGBTQ+ New Mexicans.”, says Carver, “Equality New Mexico has endorsed them both before and we’re proud to endorse both incumbents again.”

The endorsed candidates in contested primaries released the following statements: 

Xochitl Torres Small: "Equality New Mexico has been an amazing advocate for the LGBTQ community in New Mexico," said Torres Small. "Having partnered with EQNM while working at the UNM School of Law Clinic, I saw firsthand their commitment to ensuring that all New Mexican's civil liberties and rights were protected.  I am honored to have their endorsement, and look forward to continuing to work with them through the campaign and beyond."

Deb Haaland: "This endorsement is very personal for me, I've worked with EQNM for a very long time, and I’ll continue to work extremely hard to win this primary so I can champion equal rights for all and protection from all discrimination. In this Trump era, when too many people face increasingly hateful violence, we can't turn our backs for even a moment -- because if we do, Trump will continue to strip away the rights of our LGBTQ family. In Congress, I’ll stand up to Trump and his exclusion of transgender members in our military and I'll fight to make sure Title 9 protects everyone. It’s time that Congress works to truly address the oppression of our marginalized communities.”






State Equality Index Scorecard Gives Optimistic Snapshot of Equality for LGBTQ New Mexicans:


ALBUQUERQUE, NM, January 8 - Today’s release of the Human Rights Campaign’s State Equality Index (SEI) report indicates New Mexico’s continued progress toward equality and self-determination for the LGBTQ+ community through 2017. Nationally, these scorecards look at statewide measures, both positive and negative, that affect LGBQT+ equality in 6 areas: parenting, relationship recognition and religious refusal, non-discrimination, hate crimes, youth, and health & safety.  

“The State Equality Index is an important reminder of the hard-fought wins we've had,” says Adrian Carver, Executive Director of Equality New Mexico (EQNM), New Mexico’s statewide LGBTQ advocacy and civil rights organization. “Regardless of what this federal administration or Congress tries to do, in New Mexico we have strong state-level protections for the rights and liberties for our community and our families.”

Changes from the 2016 SEI:

New Mexico’s score improved after Senate Bill 121, or “The Protect NM Kids Act,” sponsored by Senator Jacob Candelaria (D-Bernalillo) and Representative G. Andres Romero (D-Bernalillo), was signed into law by Governor Susana Martinez last April. The law prohibits the dangerous and discredited practice of conversion therapy by licensed mental health providers with minors under the age 18, increasing the well-being and safety of all LGBTQ+ New Mexicans.

Looking Ahead in 2018:

Areas where New Mexico lacked significantly were laws and policies protecting LGBTQ+ youth, as well as LGBTQ+ inclusive health and safety laws and policies. EQNM is continuing its efforts to address these statewide gaps.  

“Equality New Mexico will, in the coming legislative sessions, fight for the inclusion of our communities in ALL policies. We'll step up the fight to ensure that New Mexico protects our students and families, that state workers are included in non-discrimination policies, that trans & gender non-conforming New Mexicans have full access to healthcare, and beyond", says Carver.

“In the upcoming legislative budget session, Equality New Mexico will be working to see the values of a ‘queer state budget’ reflected for the next fiscal year. A queer state budget means smart investments in education, the economy, health and wellness, civic engagement, and justice.” 



Conversion Therapy: A Parent's Story

It was almost 20 years ago I learned my daughter Amber was questioning her sexual orientation. Amber wasn’t someone who would question something like this easily—I knew this was a deep, painful struggle for her, and I was terrified of what it meant for her life and our family.



EQNM, All Families Matter Coalition, NM Safe Schools Initiative Applaud Santa Fe Public Schools Transgender Student Protections

Santa Fe, NM—Today, Santa Fe Public Schools (SFPS) announced the incorporation into existing policy of an administrative regulation addressing the safety and well being of transgender students. Formally introduced in October 2015 through the efforts of the Santa Fe Chapter of the All Families Matter Coalition and New Mexico Safe Schools Initiative partners, the regulation ensures students are addressed by the name and pronoun corresponding to their gender identity, and requires access to gender-segregated activities and areas in accordance with students’ gender identity. The regulation is supported by changes made to the SFPS Nondiscrimination Policy last year, in which ‘gender identity’ and ‘gender expression’ were added as protected classes.



Entre dos mundos sin identidad: Parte II

"Es difícil porque tienen que navegar entre los dos identidades y a veces por miedo no saben a quien contactar para ayudarlos", menciono la coordinadora del sur para EQNM, Myra Llerenas."Y por eso nosotros estamos aquí para hacer un refugio en donde pueden venir".

Igualdad Nuevo México, o más bien conocido como EQNM ha ofrecido su ayuda a la comunidad con preferencias sexuales diferentes por más de 20 años. En Diciembre del 2014, inicio un programa que proveé ayuda para los indocumentados LGBTQ a obtener sus derechos, desde ayuda para la legalización de su estatus migratorio en los Estado Unidos hasta la promoción de la igualdad social, y la integración al mundo laboral.