Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category


Emerging Leaders Circle

June 26, 2019

The Emerging Leaders Circle is a dynamic group of young professionals, 35 years or younger, who have been identified as the next generation of leaders. As a donor, you are investing in the vital work of Equality Illinois – statewide campaigns that promote fair treatment for LGBTQ citizens of Illinois. Your membership in the Emerging Leaders Circle is a partnership with Equality Illinois and an investment in our joint fight for equality.

As an Emerging Leaders Circle member, you have unique access to the decision makers within Equality Illinois. You’ll receive exclusive informational updates, access to private events throughout the year, and opportunities for discounts on events and activities. The Emerging Leaders Circle is much more than a donor group. It is a nucleus of support, influence and leadership that works relentlessly for equitable change.


EI supports SB 7, the Cannabis Regulation and Taxation Act

May 22, 2019

Equality Illinois is proud to endorse SB 7, the Cannabis Regulation and Taxation Act.  LGBTQ people use cannabis at more than double the rates of non-LGBTQ people according to data from the 2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health sponsored by the US Department of Health & Human Services.  The criminalization of cannabis use therefore disproportionately harms the LGBTQ community.  By legalizing cannabis for recreational use by anyone over the age of 21, SB 7 has the potential to reduce the number of LGBTQ people caught up in Illinois’ criminal justice system.

Read our entire statement by clicking on the learn more button


Let’s vote for LGBTQ equality!

February 25, 2019

We have achieved great progress towards LGBTQ equality through engagement in the electoral process. Let’s keep Chicago a welcoming and affirming city. Let’s vote for LGBTQ equality.

In Chicago, there’s still time for you to have your say in who should be your next pro-equality Mayor, City Clerk, City Treasurer, and Alderman. Standing up for LGBTQ equality means showing up at the voting booth. This election, we have the power to vote for candidates who support equality for all. Thank you for following through on your commitment to vote this election.

Here are two simple steps you can take to make your voice heard at the ballot box:

Step 1: Check your registration status

Head to the Chicago Board of Election Commissionerswebsite to check your registration status and make sure it is up to date. If you are registering to vote for the first time or have to file an address update or name change, you can do that when you vote, but you must provide two forms of ID, one of which shows your current address.

Step 2: Make a plan to vote

Having a plan to vote is crucial to make sure your voice is heard this election. Making a plan is as easy as deciding what day and what time you want to vote.

On Monday, February 25, you can vote at the designated early voting location in your ward or at the Loop Super Site. Click here for more information on Early Voting, including locations and hours.

On Tuesday, February 26, a voter may cast a ballot only at the polling place assigned to that voter’s precinct. Click here to check your voter information and find your polling place. Polls will be open from 6:00am to 7:00pm and you can get up to two hours paid leave if you need to vote during the work day.



February 3, 2019

Chicago opening night performance of Dear Evan Hansen on Tuesday, February 12, 2019, has SOLD OUT!

Proceeds from the sale of these tickets benefit Equality Illinois’ important LGBTQ civil rights work.

“One of the most remarkable shows in musical theater history,” says The Washington Post. The New York Times calls DEAR EVAN HANSEN “a gut-punching, breathtaking knockout of a musical” and NBC News says that the musical is “an inspiring anthem resonating on Broadway and beyond.”


A letter that was never meant to be seen, a lie that was never meant to be told, a life he never dreamed he could have. Evan Hansen is about to get the one thing he’s always wanted: a chance to finally fit in. DEAR EVAN HANSEN is the deeply personal and profoundly contemporary musical about life and the way we live it.


Equality Illinois 2019 Gala SOLD OUT!

January 18, 2019

As of today, the largest formal LGBTQ equality event in the Midwest, the Equality Illinois 2019 Gala has SOLD OUT of Individual Tickets!

We are incredibly grateful for the breath of support shown to the LGBTQ community. Selling out a venue like the Chicago Hilton demonstrates how important LGBTQ people are to the fabric of this state.  

If you will be joining a sponsor or table captain at one of their tables, please reach out to them for the link to secure your ticket.

This year’s Gala is chaired by community leader Nabeela Rasheed. South Bend, Indiana mayor Pete Buttigieg, a rising national star among Democrats, will be the keynote speaker!  Each year we award inspirational leaders and organizations whose selfless work helps create a world that is healthy, just and fully equal for all LGBTQ people. This year we will celebrate and honor Channyn Lynne Parker, Danny Wirtz, and the Illinois AFL-CIO.



January 11, 2019

Ahead of Chicago’s approaching mayoral election, LGBTQ Chicagoans have an opportunity to hear directly about issues impacting their lives at the LGBTQ Forum with Chicago Mayoral Candidates on Saturday, January 19 at 2 p.m. #LGTBQMayor2019

Mayoral candidates who have confirmed attendance as of Jan. 8 include: Gery Chico, Amara Enyia, Bob Fioretti, LaShawn Ford, Jerry Joyce, John Kozlar, Lori Lightfoot, Garry McCarthy, Susana Mendoza, Toni Preckwinkle, and Paul Vallas.

Submit questions for the candidates and RSVP by clicking the Learn more button.


New Majority House Leader State Rep. Greg Harris

January 10, 2019

Equality Illinois Celebrates the Appointment of Openly Gay State Rep. Greg Harris as Illinois House Majority Leader and Thanks Speaker Michael J. Madigan for his Leadership

A statement from Brian C. Johnson, CEO of Equality Illinois, the state’s civil rights organization for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) Illinoisans:

“We are excited by Speaker Michael J. Madigan’s appointment today of State Representative Greg Harris to be the next Illinois House Majority Leader. This is a historic appointment. Leader Harris is the first openly gay person to hold the important role of Illinois House Majority Leader.

“We know Leader Harris as a true champion of advancing justice and equality for LGBTQ people and all historically marginalized communities. We look forward to working with him in this significant leadership role to continue advancing justice in Illinois.

“We thank Speaker Madigan for his significant leadership in advancing LGBTQ equality in Illinois. Just yesterday, we heard in nominating speeches of the Speaker’s critical role in passing marriage equality legislation in Illinois. Today, his appointment of Leader Harris further demonstrates the Speaker’s commitment to LGBTQ equality and representation.”


Happy New Year from Equality Illinois

January 2, 2019

Here’s to another year of working towards creating a more inclusive, diverse and progressive Illinois.

Equality Illinois wishes EVERYONE a happy, healthy, safe and equal 2019!


Human Rights Ordinance

December 21, 2018

On December 21, 1988, with a vote of 28-17 the City Council passed the Human Rights Ordinance. This Passage of the ordinance on Human Rights, was a turning point in Chicago LGBT history because it granted the queer community  social equality under the law and made it illegal to discriminate against LGBTQ individuals and other kinds of diversity and other such as people with disabilities, marital status, race, age, religion and several other categories.

It was because of the strategies of the late Mayor Harold Washington, and the powerful “Gang of four”; Laurie Dittman, Rick Garcia, Arthur (Art) Johnston and the late Jon-Henri Damski; who served as a fierce group of activists and were instrumental in the final passage of the ordinance.

We are grateful for their efforts and countless others in our community, who have contributed and committed to the equality we have been granted today.

To learn more about this historic ordinance visit:


The Polls Are Open!

March 15, 2016

VOTE TODAY for fb and tw

Illinois polling places are now open and will be open all day until 7 pm.

Even if you are not registered, you can still register and vote today for the first time in a presidential election.

Check you polling place and check your registration status at our 2016 Voter Information Page. Make sure your voice is heard and vote today!



EQIL PAC Details Rauner anti-LGBT Spending

August 5, 2014

Rauner Certificate_postIn preparation for the upcoming Market Days festival, the largest two-day street festival in the Midwest, LGBT leaders including the Equality Illinois Political Action Committee plan to call attention to Bruce Rauner’s anti-LGBT activities and ongoing conservative social agenda for Illinois.

Equality Illinois organizations and activists say that Rauner, who has claimed not to be running on a socially conservative agenda, has contributed to anti-gay candidates, as has his wife, Diana. The Market Days flyers, made up to look like voided marriage certificates, point to $95,400 in contributions the Rauners gave to anti-LGBT candidates.



Celebrating Marriage Equality

June 1, 2014



Advancing the Federal LGBT Agenda

January 13, 2014
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi meets with the EQIL delegation, including CEO Bernard Cherkasov

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi meets with the EQIL delegation, including CEO Bernard Cherkasov

An Equality Illinois delegation spent Thursday, January 9 in Washington, DC meeting with leaders to discuss a wide range of issues and emphasizing that despite great gains in 2013, the agenda remains full and there should be no complacency.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin, U.S. Rep. Mike Quigley and the Obama administration officials in attendance were very receptive and welcomed the input.