LGBT and Latino Elders Stand in Solidarity on Orlando Shooting

In light of the tragic shooting at an LGBT club/community space in Orlando earlier this week, two Diverse Elders Coalition members — the National Hispanic Council on Aging (NHCOA) and Services and Advocacy for GLBT Elders (SAGE) — have released a joint statement in solidarity with the victims, survivors, and communities affected by this tragedy. This statement originally appeared on both the NHCOA blog and the SAGE website, and you can read an additional statement from SAGE CEO Michael Adams here.

#WeAreOrlando

BENSON KUA VIA FLICKR, CC BY-SA 2.0

BENSON KUA VIA FLICKR, CC BY-SA 2.0

As leaders from organizations working to advance equality and to counteract discrimination against the LGBT and Latino communities, we unite today to condemn the outrageous violence that took the lives of more than 50 of our brothers and sisters this sunday in Orlando.

Many constituents of Services & Advocacy for GLBT Elders (SAGE) are Latino and many constituents of the National Hispanic Council on Aging (NHCOA) are LGBT.

Words cannot express our grief at the senseless loss of so many – including many LGBT Latino people, in the heinous massacre at Pulse in Orlando.

The tragedy last night at Pulse, reminds us that we cannot be divided into disconnected communities and that our lives, our cultures, our identities and our goals intersect in ways large and small.

Knowing this, we condemn not only the violence in Orlando, but also any effort to hijack this tragedy to advance an agenda of bigotry and hatred against immigrants, Muslims or any other community.

We will not allow the lost lives of our LGBT and Latino brothers and sisters to be devalued in this way.  Our diversity is a source of strength, and must not be used to create division.  Thus, we will stand strong for justice and equity for every member of every community in this extraordinarily diverse country.

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La organización para el Servicio y Defensa de Adultos Mayores LGBT (SAGE) y el Consejo Nacional Hispano para Adultos Mayores (NHCOA) unen sus voces para condenar enérgicamente la masacre ocurrida este domingo en Orlando, donde fueron asesinadas más de 50 hermanas y hermanos.

Como organizaciones líderes en la defensa y promoción de la igualdad y la lucha para erradicar cualquier tipo de discriminación contra la comunidad LGBT, SAGE yNHCOA, rechazan la violencia en todas sus formas, especialmente las motivadas por el odio y la intolerancia.

Para SAGE y NHCOA, no hay palabras que puedan expresar el dolor ante esta sensible pérdida que afectó a la comunidad latina sexodiversa.

No debe existir divisionismo entre nuestras comunidades, al contrario, la unión de culturas y metas deben predominar por el bien social y la construcción de una sociedad más justa.

Exigimos que este crimen de odio no sirva de excusa para iniciar una agenda basada en la intolerancia y el racismo contra las comunidades hispanas y musulmanas. La diversidad es fuente de fortaleza y no debe ser utilizada como mecanismo de separación.

SAGE y NHCOA permanecerán vigilantes de la justicia y la equidad que merecen todos los miembros de nuestras comunidades, en este extraordinario y diverso país.

 

Dr. Yanira Cruz, NHCOA CEO

Michael Adams, SAGE CEO