September 1 and September 24

Equality Florida, the state’s largest LGBT civil rights organization, organizes events in the community every so often called “equality connections.” You may have attended one already; we have publicized equality connections across South and Central Florida in previous issues of Hotspots. They are informal mixers that bring LGBT people and their allies together so they can meet one another, network, and hear about the latest news from Equality Florida.EQFLBroward_copy2

There will be two Broward County equality connections coming up in the month of September. The first will be hosted at Thirteen Restaurant and Bar on Wilton Drive on Tuesday, September 1 at 6 p.m. The second will be held at Gulfstream Park on South Federal Highway in Hallandale Beach on Thursday, September 24, also at 6 p.m.

At Equality Florida’s equality connections, drinks and hors d’oeuvres are served and a team of EQFLBroward_copy1Equality Florida development officers and volunteers talk to the attendees, making sure they are signed up for Equality Florida’s mailing list and recruiting a stable of possible volunteers for future community events.

Once that is finished, the development officers will lead a discussion revolving around Equality Florida’s (and the Florida LGBT community’s) recent successes. These would include Florida’s legalization of same-sex marriage in January; the recent Florida Legislature session, in which no anti-LGBT bills were passed this year; and the favorable verdict in the Supreme Court case Obergefell v. Hodges in June, which legalized same-sex marriage nationwide. Equality Florida’s development officers will also talk about what work still needs to be done in Florida, such as the advancement of the “Florida Competitive Workforce Act,” which would ban job discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, as well as formulating a comprehensive statewide non-discrimination law.

Equality FloridaIt is free to attend Equality Florida equality connection events like the two coming up in Broward County this month. All you have to do is RSVP for the event by going to eqfl.org, locating the equality connection you’d like to attend, and filling out the online form. That helps the organizers know how many people are coming so they can plan the event accordingly.

For more information on Equality Florida, visit eqfl.org. Follow them on Twitter for real-time updates @equalityfl. To read more about the Florida Competitive Workforce Act, read our interview with Carlos Guillermo Smith.

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Mike Halterman
Mike Halterman has been the editor of Hotspots Central since its launch in July 2016. He joined the Hotspots Media Group family as editor of Hotspots' South Florida magazine in June 2013. A former "40 Under 40" honoree in The Advocate magazine, Mike lives in the Tampa Bay area.