The Four-Session Series Teaches How to Engage in Policy Reform and Fight for Civil Rights
Program Registration Closes April 1, 2019
WEST HOLLYWOOD, CA: Today, Christopher Street West (CSW), the 501(c)3 non-profit that produces the annual LA Pride Festival and Parade in partnership with the Trans Wellness Center announced the creation of PLATform: Policy, Leadership, and Advocacy Training program to support and educate the transgender and non-binary communities on how to engage in activism and policy reform. This first-of-its-kind program was conceptualized by CSW Board Member Alexandra Magallon with Trans Wellness Center Program Manager Mariana Marroquin.
Currently, legislation is threatening to erase the transgender and non-binary community from the federal definition of gender. Now more than ever, there is a critical need to train the next generation of leaders on best practices for advocacy and policy-making. LA Pride is committed to amplifying the voices of the transgender and non-binary communities and is providing a “PLATform” for these voices to ring in the halls of justice.
“LA Pride has built a rich history as an active voice for the LGBTQ+ community and is dedicated to empowering the next generation,” said Alexandra Magallon, CSW Board Member. “I’m continuously inspired by activists like Silvia Rivera and Marsha P. Johnson, and we must prepare a new wave of advocates to use the government as a tool to fight for equality.”
PLATform will train community members to become Advocates with courses and leadership seminars that will develop critical thinking skills, while pinpointing various factors that foster marginalization, including class, race, religion, oppression, privilege and more. Advocates will then learn how to develop the political tools that aid in the creation of policy and legal protections, as well as how to advocate in media and arm themselves with helpful hints when lobbying or attending meetings with elected officials. Individuals in the program must attend a minimum of four meetings of up to eight hours.
The program culminates in Advocates presenting the top values and rights they will champion for their community as part of a graduation ceremony at the LA Pride Trans Brunch, scheduled for Saturday, June 1. Advocates will be further recognized at events throughout Pride month, including the LA Pride Parade and Festival.
Graduating Advocates will be offered an opportunity to join the Resistance Squad at the Los Angeles LGBT Center. As part of the Resistance Squad, Advocates can further develop proposed policies to impact change and given the tools and opportunities to lobby state, local and federal officials to implement those policies.
PLATform is the most recent program LA Pride and CSW have added in recent years to support the transgender community and increase transgender visibility. Last year, CSW hosted its first Trans Brunch, honoring trans advocates and celebrating all members of the trans community. The Trans Brunch was led by Alexandra Magallon in collaboration with then-volunteer and now CSW board member, Johanna Padilla. Magallon and Padilla previously collaborated on the Trans Galleria at the LA Pride Festival, which will return in 2019.
The 2019 LA Pride Parade and Festival will take place on June 8-9 at West Hollywood Park, featuring performances by Years & Years, Meghan Trainor, Ashanti, Amara La Negra, Dej Loaf, Greyson Chance, MNEK, Pabllo Vittar, and Ah-Mer-Ah-Su — with more to be announced soon. Regardless of genre, this year’s performers will come together on the Festival’s two main stages to embrace this year’s theme, #JUSTUNITE.
Festival-goers are encouraged to buy tickets in advance online at lapride.org. Ticket sales and proceeds from the LA Pride Festival support and fund the LA Pride Parade, LGBTQ+ community grant programs and scholarships, and CSW’s philanthropy, Casa del Sol. CSW provides free festival tickets to LGBTQ+ non-profits and service organizations to distribute to their members.
To apply to join PLATform, interested Advocates should email Alexandra Magallon at firstname.lastname@example.org by Monday, April 1, 2019.
About Christopher Street West (CSW) & LA Pride
Christopher Street West (CSW), a 501(c)3 non-profit, organized the world’s first permitted parade advocating for gay rights on June 28, 1970, as a response to and in commemoration of the Stonewall Rebellion on Christopher Street in New York City the year prior. Since then, we have built a rich history as an active voice for the LGBTQ+ community across the Greater Los Angeles metropolitan area. Today, we continue to produce the globally-recognized LA Pride Parade and Festival every June in the City of West Hollywood. We also organize a number of events throughout the year with our non-profit, philanthropic, community, and corporate partners. Visit lapride.org for more information.