Great (but not surprising) news:
Gays and Lesbians in Foreign Affairs Agencies (GLIFAA) has been named Out and Equal Workplace Advocates' 2009 Employee Resource Group of the Year!
And of course we were. Can any other group lay claim to accomplishing as much as we did this year?
For those who don't know about GLIFAA, first, welcome to this blog. Since 1992, when President Clinton removed homosexuality as a bar to receiving a security clearance, GLIFAA has served as the officially-recognized employee organization representing the concerns of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered personnel at the Department of State, U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and other foreign affairs agencies.
From the very begining, GLIFAA has consistently advocated for policy change. While steps were made along the way (most notably the Member of Household policy, which recognized same-sex partners for the first time and allowed partners to live in Embassy housing overseas, but not much else). In 2009, however, GLIFAA’s patient, persistent consultation with the Secretary of State helped create a major policy change to extend key benefits, such as family preference in employement, diplomatic passports, and access to the medical unit and evacuations while at post, to same-sex partners of Foreign Service personnel. It was a major step towards equality for LGBT Foreign Service families and we hope a move toward equal treatment for all federal employees and ultimately equal rights for all people, regardless of sexual orientation.
Additional information about GLIFAA can be found at http://www.glifaa.org/; more information on Out and Equal can be found at http://www.outandequal.org/.
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