LGBTQIA+ Pride Month 2023
At the YMCA of San Francisco, we stand proudly with the LGBTQIA+ community as we celebrate Pride Month. This month we continue to honor and recognize the immense contributions of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and other diverse individuals who have fought tirelessly for equality, love and acceptance in our society and around the world. This year, especially, we believe that the visibility of LGBTQIA+ identity and creating safe spaces for our communities to exist is even more important.
We believe that every person, regardless of their sexual orientation, gender identity, or expression, deserves to be treated with dignity, respect and fairness. Our commitment to inclusivity is unwavering, and we strive to create a safe and welcoming environment for all under the leadership of Jamie Bruning-Miles, the first openly gay male President and CEO of a YMCA in this nation. We celebrate our LGBTQIA+ visibility to normalize the umbrella of queer existence.
During Pride Month and throughout the year, we encourage everyone to reflect on the progress we have made and acknowledge the work that still lies ahead, especially as a nation. We recognize the ongoing struggles faced by the LGBTQIA+ community, particularly our transgender siblings, and reaffirm our dedication to supporting and advocating for their rights and well-being.
It's deeply concerning that current and ongoing legislative bills continue to target transgender people in various parts of our country. We are alarmed by all attempts that limit access to healthcare, deny athletic participation, and infringe upon fundamental rights and freedoms. Such legislation not only directly harms a lifetime, but also sends a message of intolerance and exclusion that equally impacts us all.
We stand in solidarity with our transgender community members. It's crucial that we create spaces where transgender individuals feel safe, respected, and valued for who they are.
Through our programs and services, we are committed to providing support, resources and education to foster understanding and empathy for LGBTQIA+ experiences. YSF will continue to work diligently to advocate for policies that protect transgender rights, dismantle systemic barriers and promote equality for all.
As an organization deeply rooted in community, we celebrate the diverse tapestry of voices, experiences, and perspectives that enrich our society. We invite all members, staff, volunteers and participants to join us in fostering a culture of acceptance, equality and love for all. Let us come together to champion the rights and well-being of our community and create a world where everyone can thrive.
Happy Pride Month!
The YMCA of San Francisco
LGBTQIA+ ERG Co-Chairs, Precious Ogbonna and Joshua Pisciotta