Advocates for Youth condemns the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision ruling in 303 Creative v. Elenis that businesses discriminating against LGBTQ+ people are protected through the free speech clause of the First Amendment. Plainly, the Court ruled in favor of a Christian web designer who refuses to create websites that celebrate same-sex weddings.
Advocates for Youth is deeply disappointed in the devastating outcome of these cases. Affirmative action programs have significantly helped Black, Indigenous, and Latinx youth, who have historically been excluded from colleges and universities, access higher education. This decision is just another blatant attempt by those with power and privilege to do whatever they can to hold on to that power. It undermines efforts to remedy systemic racism in public education and to create diverse and inclusive campuses.
While we are disturbed and disheartened by the recent open-letter “Navigating Differences” published on May 23, 2023, we are incredibly proud of the community response to it; numerous publications, organizations and individuals have been rallying against the sexist, queerphobic ideology preached in the original publication, as well as the declaration of the authors and signatories that they are the sole authority on what “Islam” says, supports or stands for.
Advocates for Youth applauds and welcomes President Biden’s executive order expanding contraception access. In the current political environment, in which attacks on reproductive and sexual health and rights proliferate, it’s incredibly important to remove barriers to contraception where possible. We applaud the White House’s commitment to contraceptive access and strongly urge federal agencies, including the Department of Health and Human Services, to now take action to expand that access.
“Many states have banned gender-affirming care for minors, LGBTQ books in school libraries, transgender girls in sports, and the ability to even discuss gender identity or sexual orientation at school. These dehumanizing laws and the dangerous rhetoric they have stirred have shown us that the federal government must step in now to protect LGBTQ youth. Nondiscrimination protections are a powerful step. The introduction of the Equality Act during Pride Month sends a strong message that our civil rights are inextricably linked to queer and trans joy.” - Amber Barcel, Director of Public Policy, Advocates for Youth