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What: LGBT Equality Institute presented by Equality Illinois

When: Saturday, May 17, 2014, 9 am to 5:30 pm (Registration opens at 8 am)

Details: Equality Illinois – in partnership with Lambda Legal, the AIDS Legal Council of Chicago, the National Immigrant Justice Center, Howard Brown Health Center, and the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention – is inviting activists and supporters to attend the LGBT Equality Institute this spring to discuss the myriad issues still facing lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Illinoisans and the strategies for addressing them in the aftermath of the successful passage of the freedom to marry.

Program: Among the expert presenters will be U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky, a senior member of the Illinois Congressional Delegation, Gautam Raghavan, White House Public Engagement Advisor on LGBT Issues, and Meg Gorecki, Midwest Director for the U.S. Department of Justice, who will be joining the institute for our lunch panel to discuss the federal LGBT policy agenda.

See the list of 15 presentations and panel discussions to be held throughout the day.

Registration: The price is $60, including breakfast and lunch. Register HERE.

Scholarships are available to those with financial need by emailing Equality Illinois.

Embassy SuitesWhere: Embassy Suites Downtown/Lakefront Chicago, 511 N. Columbus Drive. (Between Illinois and Grand, two blocks east of Michigan Avenue shopping district.)

Getting there:
There is ample but expensive parking in the area, and costly taxis are generally plentiful. Here are driving directions.

Public transit on the CTA is the best and cheapest way to get to the hotel.  Plan your ride (remember to look at Saturday schedules) and check fare options on the CTA HERE.

The Red Line Grand Avenue subway stop is the closest CTA rail stop. Then you can walk or take a bus east several blocks to the hotel.

From O’Hare, take the Blue Line train to the Loop. From Midway, take the Orange Line train downtown. From the Loop, transfer to a connecting bus or walk to the hotel.

Various bus lines serve the downtown Metra and Amtrak train stations to the hotel area.

Hotel accommodations: Chicago is a convention city, and one of the biggest will be in town the weekend of the institute, The National Restaurant Show. Still, various hotel websites might help find a room, and there are pleasant hotels just a few miles and an easy bus or train ride away in the Lakeview area, home to Chicago’s “Boys Town.” Also check hotels around the Midway and O’Hare areas. If you drive, you can leave your cars at the hotels and take the train lines into the city to avoid high parking rates.

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