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Topic: Tennessee Equality Project

TEP needs your help fighting for equality for all Tennesseans in the coming year


2009 was a landmark year for equality in Tennessee, but we don’t have time to look back.  The General Assembly reconvenes in just two weeks and we have to be ready to fight for our rights.

If I just had twenty seconds to speak with you in person, this is what I would say:

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Tennessee Equality Project plans “Advance Equality Day” on Legislative Hill



On February 17th, Tennessee Equality Project [TEP] is staging “Advance Equality Day” on the Hill in Nashville.

TEP is staging this annual legislative lobbying event to show state and local legislators that their constituency is paying attention to discriminatory and harmful legislation being proposed in the general assembly. TEP has opposed past attempts by so-called conservative members of the state Republican Party to enact proposals from the national level that seek to restrict certain demographics of our populace from enjoying the protections and safeties guaranteed under the Constitution of the United States and the  Tennessee State Constitution. «Read the rest of this article»


Tennessee Equality Project: It’s time!


Today, I’m ready to shout. I’m not shouting because I’m mad, I’m shouting out to every single reader of Clarksville Online. It’s an open call especially to the GLBT readership, but I’m also including every single ally that reads this article. How many are you? I would suppose that you’re hundreds, perhaps thousands. That’s a lot of people that I’m shouting to. My call is for you to show Clarksville that you care about your rights as a citizen in Tennessee. I’m a facts-based type of guy, so let’s start by looking at some facts.

• Did you know that a Tennessee State Constitutional amendment was devised and passed which took away your rights of marrying the person of your choice? These rights were written into our constitution and taken away from us. When I say “us,” I mean all of us. We are now constitutionally restricted as to whom we can marry. «Read the rest of this article»


TEP urges prosecution in church shooting as a hate crime


The Tennessee Equality Project (TEP) and the Tennessee Equality Project Foundation have extended their support, thoughts and prayers to the victims, families, and the entire community of Knoxville after a shooting at the Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church claimed the lives of two congregation members, and injured others. Leaders also encouraged District Attorneys to prosecute the incident as a hate crime, as Tennessee’s hate crimes statute explicitly includes religion and sexual orientation. A signed, four page letter authored by the gunman stated his hate for “liberals” and “gays.”

Carla Lewis, a member of the Tennessee Transgender Political Coalition who often attended church services and group meetings at TVUUC, was present at the time of the shooting. She reflected on the horror of her recent experience, by recounting to Out & About Newspaper, “We saw children and adults with blood on their clothes. We saw the worst side of human cruelty we had ever seen.” «Read the rest of this article»

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Legislative Updates from Tennessee Equality Project


Tennessee Equality Project (TEP), a statewide organization dedicated to promoting and sustaining the equality of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender persons in Tennessee, is paying careful attention to several bills that the State Legislature is presently considering. As part of this process, TEP is asking residents of Montgomery and the surrounding counties to become involved in advancing equality in this region. The local committee, TEP Montgomery County, will meet on April 21 at 7:00 PM at Borders Bookstore coffee shop at 2801 Wilma Rudolph Blvd., Clarksville. «Read the rest of this article»


Campfield: Quixotic attempt to mandate curricular limitations shows anti-gay bias


Tennessee Equality Project LogoStacey Campfield (R, Knoxville), a self-described Christian and one of the more colorful members of the Tennessee House of Representatives, recently introduced what many have viewed as an extremely confusing bill regarding that which he most eloquently describes in his blog as “what should not be taught in our schools.” This bill, HB2997, requests the amendment of the Tennessee State Code to prohibit “any instruction or materials discussing sexual orientation other than heterosexuality” in elementary and middle schools.

co-stacey-campfield.jpgCampfield (at right), during his short tenure in the House, has gained a reputation for introducing controversial, if not peculiar, legislation that many view as antagonistic and bizarre. His past history of failed attempts to limit academic freedom are also well known. In 2005, he introduced HB0432, which was an attempt to limit instructional content by specifically denying classroom teachers the opportunity to express their own personal beliefs with regards to the material that they present. At the same time, Campfield made it clear that he felt as though students should have the right to “speak without fear of hurting their grades.” Many view this as an attempt to legitimatize the rights of free speech for students, but to limit them for classroom instructors.

Last year, Campfield has introduced legislation calling for the removal of the sales tax on food, replacing the lost revenue to the state with additional taxes on pornography. As a Christian, he justifies the potential for financial gain through the taxation of an industry that many of his fellow Christians would call immoral, by defining it as a “luxury item.” Many viewed this legislation as an attempt to give good reason for the sale of pornographic materials and the peddling of human flesh through a motive to fill the State’s coffers. «Read the rest of this article»

Sections: Politics | 2 Comments

TEP’s Lobbying 101 seminar in Clarksville tonight


TEP logoThe Tennessee Equality Project is hosting their Lobbying 101 seminar tonight from 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm at the Riverview Inn located at 50 College Street in Clarksville.

Their goal is for people from the Clarksville, Montgomery County area to participate in their Feb 19 Advancing Equality Day on the Hill event. This Lobbying 101 session will prepare you to be able to actively participate.  

Sexuality based attacks have already begun in the Tennessee Legislature for the 2008 term, and illustrate why this proactive approach is necessary.

For additional information or any other questions, please contact Middle Tennessee Coordinator Todd Hughes at

The Tennessee Equality Project is a 501c4 organization incorporated in Tennessee.  Gifts to TEP are not deductible for purposes of federal income tax.

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TTPC, TEP review discrimination law, lobby for transgender rights


Tennessee Transgender Political CoalitionUS House Resolution 3685, the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, represents a bold move to enact legislation prohibiting discrimination against employees based on sexual orientation. At face value, the Resolution appears to represent a progressive move towards equality for gays and lesbians in the workplace. Unfortunately, it falls short of that goal. The major shortcoming of this legislation is that it completely ignores the rights of the transgender population in the workforce.

The Tennessee Equality ProjectThe Tennessee Equality Project (TEP) is holding an organizational meeting on November 12, at 7:00 PM, at Borders Bookstore Café, 2801 Wilma Rudolph Blvd., in Clarksville, to present the issue and discuss the reality of and omissions in the non-discrimination law. TEP can assist Montgomery County residents in making their opinions on this bill and other issues of equality heard at both the state and national levels.

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Tennessee Equality Project forms Montgomery County Committee


TEP LOGOThe Tennessee Equality Project is presently in the process of forming “ TEP Montgomery County,” a special group that is concerned with the needs of citizens in the Clarksville Region. They need your help and support. An organizational meeting will take place on November 12 at 7:00 PM in Clarksville at the Borders Bookstore Cafe at 2801 Wilma Rudolph Blvd. The meeting should last no more than one hour. Please plan to attend. If you have any questions, please contact Todd Hughes at .

Elsewhere in Tennessee: Nashville

The Tennessee Equality Project held a meeting with Nashville Community Members and Leaders to Solicit Opinions for non-discrimination ordinance for Nashville, TN.

A group of approximately sixty community members met on the evening of Wednesday, October 12, at the East End Methodist Church in Nashville to discuss the possibilities for a non-discrimination ordinance and other positive legislation for Metro Nashville. «Read the rest of this article»


Why marriage matters, personal stories from real Tennesseans: Jason & Steven


noon1thumbnail.jpgSteven & Jason
Nashville, TN
1 year together

We met for the first time 9 years ago, and up until a year ago, we dated off and on. Last year, we decided to get serious. Not being able to get married worries us because we aren’t getting the same legal rights as everyone else. We can’t have the same insurance, and if something were to happen to either of us, a life insurance policy wouldn’t be able to help the other. We won’t be able to see each other in the hospital if something serious happens, and without a ton of legal documents and fees, we won’t be able to make decisions for the other if we need to.

A video used to be embedded here but the service that it was hosted on has shut down.

Visit the Vote no on 1 Tennessee website for more information.

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