International Day Against Homophobia (IDAHO) is an international action to draw attention to the obvious and subtle ways LGBTQ individuals are targeted for discrimination and harassment across the globe.
In Georgia, well-known activist Betty Couvertier has been the IDAHO organizer for the last four years. For the second year in a row, Governor Nathan Deal's office has issued a proclamation per Betty's request to recognize the annual Atlanta and Georgia-wide events. Herein lies the problem - the Governor's office refuses to officially address a day against homophobia, instead issuing the vague recognition of "Mistreatment Awareness Day," as they did last year.
By sanitizing the word "homophobia," Governor Deal's office has quite literally engaged in it, by refusing to address the specific concerns of Georgia's LGBTQ citizens. The Georgia House of Representatives recognizes the importance of this event by issuing a correct proclamation, as should the Office of the Governor.
Please join us in petitioning Governor Deal's office to immediatley reissue a proclamation for "International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia" as it was originally requested. To issue a proclamation as anything else, is to do disservice to the very purpose of IDAHO events, and feed the homophobia worldwide organizers seek to advocate against.
Additionally, we request the following actions:
- In reissuing, that Governor Deal's office mail the official proclamation in an appropriate certificate envelope, to ensure it does not arrive a second time folded and tattered, signifying diminished value by the Governor's office. (UPDATE: Betty has been issued an updated proclamation, with the same title of "Mistreatment Awareness.")
- To include the proclamation as "International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia" on the Office of the Governor's website under the official proclamation page, as all others have been listed.