Protecting Our Freedoms

Hetrick-Martin Institute (HMI) believes that LGBTQ youth and adults deserve federal protections that guarantee our rights to opportunities, economic and otherwise, and the power that comes with that liberty. HMI expressly condemns the guidance issued by the Department of Justice. We understand this as a license to discriminate and a direct attack on the LGBTQ youth we serve.  These actions are in direct opposition to our mission to protect, support, and promote success for LGBTQ youth. This memo is a dangerous regression for our country, potentially permitting tax-payer funded hospitals, agencies, and other important service providers to turn away or deny our youth vital services.

To deny a young person the opportunity to participate equally, without fear of discrimination or retribution, in all aspects of our society is a disenfranchisement of our youth.

Claiming that targeted discrimination is a way to protect religious beliefs is a cowardly attempt to derail the progress of American society away from the empowerment and potential of youth. HMI does not believe that one must discriminate against LGBTQ youth in order to be protected in the practice of their faith.

Attempting to exclude any people from any part of the LGBTQ spectrum, creating divisions where there should be none, regarding whom has access to the liberties, rights and opportunities this country is meant to offer, is an egregious mistake and we must hold “leadership” accountable who would dare to challenge our rights in this way.

These attacks on our liberties are damaging to the psyche of our nation, and to the hearts and minds of LGBTQ young people who are rightfully terrified about what this might mean for their futures.

HMI works with key institutions, including those in the city and state government, to help build policies and protections that ensure the rights, protections and empowerment of LGBTQ youth. HMI will continue to strive to seek out, support and work with leaders who support LGBTQ youth’s rights and potential.


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