Media Center

NBJC in the News

In a puzzling turn of events, Judge William Thomas, a judge for Florida’s 11th judicial circuit in Miami-Dade, will not become the United States’ first black, gay male federal judge.  Elected to his current post in 2005, Thomas was first nominated by President Obama in November 2012 to a seat on the Miami-based U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida.

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As the world mourns the passing of one of the most beloved figures for peace and equality, the National Black Justice Coalition (NBJC) pauses to honor and celebrate the life and service of Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela.  His legacy will be remembered as an example of struggle, sacrifice, perseverance and ultimate victory through his passionate belief in the good of the human spirit. 
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On this day, thousands will gather across the globe to observe Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDOR). It is on this day that the world will pause to honor and remember the lives of our loved ones lost due to anti-transgender violence.  Many of those whose names are sounded on this day will never be recognized by the mainstream media--meaning the public outrage over their senseless deaths will never take place. Today, we say their names for the world to hear. Today, we speak out about the heinous crimes being committed against a whole segment of our community. Today, we hold accountable the perpetrators of those crimes, the failed justice system investigating those crimes that are still unsolved, the media outlets that mis-gender and disrespect the victims of those crimes, and society for failing to create safe and affirming climates, thus making such crimes possible and acceptable. 

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In my years as an advocate for racial equality, I've heard countless stories from black men, women, and youth about barriers faced in school, college, finding a job, keeping a job, and being treated equally in the workplace. Despite laws that promote equal access to employment and protect workers from unfair practices, black workers can be subjected to hiring bias, unequal pay, and discrimination. We've worked tirelessly to enforce workplace protections so that all black people can have a fair shot at getting ahead.
 
Now, those laws aren't perfect, but imagine if we didn't have them. Imagine if co-workers made disparaging remarks about who you are, what you look like, or whom you love and there was nothing you could do about it. Imagine if you worked just as hard as your colleagues, then one day a new manager walked up and fired you just because you are black, but you didn't have any recourse, either with your supervisor, the human resources manager, or the law.

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The U.S. Small Business Administration’s Many Faces One Dream LGBT Economic Empowerment Tour for Communities of Color is back on track after being stalled due to the federal government shutdown. Initially set to take place last month, the New York City leg of the 13-city tour will now occur on November 20-21, 2013 at the New York Marriott near the Brooklyn Bridge. MFOD was launched this year to bring focus on innovation and creativity in the small business sphere.
 
“While we were excited and ready to host the MFOD-NYC conference in October, the shutdown of the federal government forced us to postpone our NYC tour stop,” says Sharon J. Lettman Hicks, Executive Director and CEO of the National Black Justice Coalition, the nation’s leading Black lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) civil rights organization.

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WASHINGTON -- Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) has withdrawn his support from a federal judicial nominee that he previously recommended -- William Thomas, a gay black judge from Miami -- and, to the anger and puzzlement of many, is preventing the nomination from moving forward at all.
...Sharon Lettman-Hicks, executive director and CEO of the National Black Justice Coalition, suggested homophobia and racism may be in play.

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From Metroweekly
On behalf of the National Black Justice Coalition and the black lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community, I applaud President Barack Obama for giving the late Bayard Rustin the national esteem and recognition he deserves by awarding him the Presidential Medal of Freedom. As one of the chief architects of the Civil Rights Movement and the brilliance behind the 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, Rustin's indispensable contributions to the ethos of our country continue to reverberate and push us toward a more just and fair society. America is indebted to Rustin, and our nation is right to finally honor him for his stalwart courage and leadership.

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From USA Today.com
As the face of the March on Washington and its most prominent voice, Martin Luther King Jr. is well known 50 years later as one of the crusaders of the civil rights movement.
A name not as widely recognized, however, is that of Bayard Rustin, the chief organizer of the march, King's mentor and an openly gay, African American civil rights advocate.

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WASHINGTON, D.C. - June 26, 2013 - Today, the U.S. Supreme Court issued rulings in favor of loving and committed same-sex couples in two landmark marriage equality cases. The National Black Justice Coalition (NBJC), the nation's leading Black lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) civil rights organization, applauds the Supreme Court for standing on the right side of history.
 
Earlier this year, the Supreme Court heard oral arguments on two historic cases: Hollingsworth v. Perry, the challenge to California's Proposition 8, and United States v. Windsor, the case challenging the so-called Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). Both cases were said to have the potential to dramatically change the trajectory of the movement for LGBT equality. 

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CLARKSDALE, MS – Monday, June 10, 2013 – The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) Community Relations Service (CRS), the National Black Justice Coalition (NBJC), Parks & Crump law firm, and the family of Marco McMillian came together for a town hall meeting on Saturday, June 8, sponsored by the Coahoma County Branch of the NAACP to discuss the murder of Marco McMillian, a Black mayoral candidate in Clarksdale, Mississippi, who was also gay.

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