Let’s Combat Stigma, Homophobia & Transphobia in Our Community

Melissa, State Senator José Serrano, and the East Harlem Immigrant Service Network are sponsoring an all-inclusive roundtable discussion entitled “Bridging the Gap; Expanding the Dialogue” that will be held on Friday, June 7th from 9 AM to 11:30 AM at the East Harlem Asthma Center of Excellence. This dialogue is intended to broaden conversations about sexuality and gender identity in El Barrio/East Harlem and the South Bronx. This is a chance for you to have an interactive discussion between elected officials and other members of the community about the best ways we can combat stigma, homophobia and transphobia in our community.


WHO: Sponsored by: Council Member Melissa Mark-Viverito, State Senator José Serrano, Jr., the East Harlem Immigrant Service Network; along with co-sponsors: Anti-Violence Project, Bailey House, Harlem United, and the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene
WHAT: Bridging the Gap; Expanding the Dialogue: Combating Stigma, Homophobia, and Transphobia in our Communities
WHEN: Friday, June 7th from 9 AM to 11:30 AM
WHERE: East Harlem Asthma Center of Excellence. 161-169 East 110th Street, 1st floor (between Lexington & Third Avenues)
MANDATORY RSVP: Joe Pressley at (212) 828-9800 or jpressley@council.nyc.gov 

Para ver el volante del evento en español, haga clic aquí.

Free Self-Defense Training Workshop in Central Park

Following the recent disturbing, violent attacks towards women in our parks, Melissa, along with Speaker Christine C. Quinn, and Council Members Gale A. Brewer and Jessica Lappin, will be sponsoring a Free Self-Defense Training run by The Center for Anti-Violence Education. This workshop is open to all over the age of 13, including seniors, although it is geared towards women and the LGBT community. Here’s your chance to learn how to defend yourself – RSVP today & make sure to wear comfortable clothes!

WHAT: FREE Self-Defense Training Workshop
WHEN: Sunday, October 7th, 2012 from 2 – 4 PM
WHERE: North Meadow Recreation Center in Central Park (Mid-Park at 97th Street)
RSVP: events@council.nyc.gov or 212.788.6871

* Training will also be provided in Spanish / También se proporcionará capacitación en español 

Statement on Yesterday’s Marriage Equality Vote

The following is a statement from Council Member Melissa Mark Viverito on yesterday’s marriage equality vote in the NYS Senate:

I was saddened and disappointed to learn that marriage equality legislation failed to pass in the New York State Senate yesterday.

The extension of equal marriage rights to gay and lesbian couples in our state and our country has been long overdue. Unfortunately, a majority of State Senators voted in favor of continuing this discrimination, which has been the cause of pain and frustration for so many New Yorkers.

I commend those Senators that did vote ‘Yes’ as well as the Governor and the Assembly for their consistent support of marriage equality. I also commend all of the advocates, organizers and community members who, by mounting such a strong campaign, got us closer than ever to passing this legislation in New York.

I look forward to the day when the State puts an end once and for all to these unfair and discriminatory restrictions on marriage.

Melissa speaks at Vigil for Jorge Steven Lopez Mercado

Melissa joined Speaker Christine Quinn and community members to honor the memory of Jorge Steven Lopez Mercado, the victim of a vicious hate crime in Puerto Rico.

She, Speaker Quinn and Council Member Rosie Mendez have sent a joint letter to Luis Fortuno, governor of Puerto Rico,  calling on him to denounce this murder and prosecute it as a hate crime.

See the below video.  A clip of Melissa’s speech begins at 1:18.