On Monday, June 19, 2017, the Department of Commerce's Office of Civil Rights, in partnership with the U.S. Agency for International Development, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, recognized the 2017 Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) Pride Month – a month-long observance of the LGBT community and the community’s impact on our Nation’s history. The event was well attended with over 150 employees from the partnership agencies.
Keynote speaker Sarah McBride, the National Press Secretary for the Human Rights Campaign, shared her story about coming out as transgender and the struggles and triumphs she experienced since. Her heartfelt speech opened minds and shed light on the journey towards LGBT equality. She said “Generations from now [...] a young gay kid, or a young trans kid will grow up and learn about the struggle for justice and equality in their textbooks and never have to know what this progress felt for those of us who are LGBTQ, because they will never know anything different. And that will be because of LGBTQ people everywhere who persevered, who marched, and fought. It’ll be because of our allies who stood up and spoke out. […] I want to thank each and every one of you for all the work you have done in your respective offices, divisions, departments, to make sure that you are upholding the duty of supporting and embracing every American citizen – protecting their rights, protecting their dignity, protecting their lives.”