• Petitioned President Obama

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President Obama

Sign an Executive Order to End LGBT Discrimination by Federal Contractors

    1. Petition by

      GetEQUAL

President Obama has an Executive Order on his desk, waiting for his signature, that would prohibit companies that do business with the government from discriminating against their employees based on sexual orientation or gender identity.

That would cover almost one quarter of the American workforce, but the President is dragging his heels. Each day that the President waits means that government agencies and federal contractors are free to fire or to not hire LGBT Americans simply because of who they are. And then-Senator Obama even promised to sign exactly such an Executive Order *in his first term* while campaigning in 2008!

With 73% support among likely 2012 voters, we can't wait for the President to play politics with our equality. Join us in creating more momentum for an Executive Order by adding your name to this online petition to the President!

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    1. Reached 25 signatures

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    • Anita Kanitz STUTTGART, GERMANY
      • 10 months ago

      Lesbian and gay rights are human rights!

      A lesbian woman has been brutally raped in July, 2013, with a toilet brush and murdered in what is believed to have been a hate crime in Ekurhuleni over the weekend.

      The Daily Sun reported that the half-naked body of 26-year-old Duduzile Zozo was found in Thokoza, Ekurhuleni, outside of Johannesburg, on Sunday morning.

      Police revealed that they had discovered a toilet brush rammed into her vagina.

      Zozo's grieving mother, Thuziwe Zozo, told the newspaper that she suspects that her daughter was murdered because of her sexuality.

      “She was a lesbian but she has never had any problems before. People loved and appreciated her," she said.

      In one of her final posts on Facebook on Friday, the young woman wrote: "In the end, we only regret the chances we didn't take, relationship we are afraid to have, and the decisions we waited too long to make..."

      Police said that they were investigating reports that she had been seen in a tavern on Saturday night.

      Captain Godfrey Maditsi urged the community "to come forward with any information that could help put those responsible behind bars".

      An emotional Thulisle Msiza, Director of Ekurhuleni LGBTI, told Mambaonline that she was shocked and saddened by news of the latest attack.

      “It seems that as lesbians we cannot go anywhere. We cannot be ourselves. We have to hide ourselves, otherwise we get killed. We have to stay indoors – like caged animals,” she said. “It’s like we are living in the apartheid era again and homosexuals are the ones that are being oppressed.”

      The Ekurhuleni metropolitan municipality has been the location of a number of brutal attacks on lesbian women.

      In April, the body of the openly lesbian Patricia Mashigo (36), a self-employed sales woman and mother of two children, was discovered out in the open in the Daveyton township.

      She appeared to have been stoned to death. Rocks and stones were found near her body.

      Days later, activists gathered in nearby KwaThema to mark the second anniversary of the murder of 24-year-old Noxolo Nogwaza, a particularly brutal hate crime that remains unsolved. Nogwaza too was stoned to death.

      Last week, the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development (DOJ&CD) issued a statement about the status of its controversial National Task Team which is aimed at "promoting and enhancing the rights of LGBTI communities" with the immediate priority "to address violence against LGBTI people".

      The task team, which consists of government players and some LGBTI rights groups, has been criticised for having accomplished very little during its more than two years in existence.

      There have, however, been recent moves to reinvigorate the task team.

      The DOJ&CD said that an action plan has now been formulated "to address violence against LGBTI people as well as the monitoring of pending and unresolved criminal cases involving LGBTI victims".

      It further said that the task team also intends to sensitise government officials to the service needs of LGBTI people and that a communication strategy is under development to raise awareness on issues of discrimination against LGBTI people.

      “We are committed to further equality for all in South Africa. This not only involves the passing of relevant legislation but also actively working for social equality. Our Task Team will therefore also address attitudes of our own staff and the broader public. We are joining hands with civil society and want to make an impact,” said Advocate Ooshara Sewpaul, a task team member from the DOJ&CD.

      Unfortunately, for Duduzile Zozo and many others like her these strategies and action plans have come too late.

      Eugene Brockman from the Gay Flag of South Africa said that the latest statement from the DOJ&CD revealed nothing new. He expressed concern that the task team had still not committed to any fixed time frames to accomplish its work.

      “It’s very vague about when they are going to do things. They have had two years to do something,” he said.

      Msiza added that while she welcomed the efforts of the task team and LGBTI activists working with government, “It’s not enough. More people need to come and stand against this. Things are bad, really bad,” she said.

      Australian police have released a shocking X-ray photo showing the skull of a murdered gay Chinese immigrant shot 34 times in the head and neck with a high-power nail gun.

      The body of gay Chen Liu, 27, was found 2008 by two children last year in marshland in south Sydney, wrapped in a carpet and bound with electrical wire.

      Detectives said the weapon used was a standard gas nail gun widely available and used in construction, firing nails up to 85mm (3.3 inches) long.

      “In 36 years, I’ve never seen a murder of this nature,” Homicide Squad Superintendent Geoff Beresford said.

      “It’s a particularly brutal and vicious murder and hence the reason we are seeking information from the public.”

      Liu arrived in Australia in 2000 and was reported missing 2008.

      Police appealed to the public for help in solving the gruesome killing of a Chinese man who was shot 34 times in the head and neck with a nail gun before being dumped in a river.

      Police have yet to say whether they’ve identified any suspects.

      The 34 nails were found during a post-mortem examination of Liu’s body, and were located mainly in his skull. They were fired from an 85 mm nail gun at close range, Beresford said. Police have not recovered the weapon.

      “We certainly believe the nail gun is responsible for the death – there’s no doubt about that,” he said.

      Police believe he was killed 12 days before his corpse was discovered.

      Police are investigating associates of Liu, who also went by the name Anthony Liu, but said they have no evidence to suggest he was linked to any criminal group. They refused to say whether they’ve identified any suspects or persons of interest.

      Liu arrived in the city of Melbourne on a student visa from China in early 2000 and moved to Sydney, where he married for a short time and separated, police said. They declined to release any additional information about him, including whether any of his family members are living in Australia.

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