I am a strong supporter of full LGBT marriage equality. In fact, the San Francisco City Attorney's Office, where I have served as a Deputy City Attorney for approximately the last decade, has been at the forefront of the legal battle for marriage equality in California. My office was the first government entity in American history ever to sue to invalidate discriminatory marriage laws, and it is the only law office to be involved as a party in every aspect of the legal fight since 2004: (1) From defending Mayor Newsom's issuance of same-sex marriage licenses; (2) To successfully suing to strike down the anti-gay marriage exclusion in the state courts; (3) To challenging the discriminatory Proposition 8 in the California Supreme Court, and now as co-plaintiff in the federal courts.
I worked with the Alameda Theatre to host a free community screening of the film BULLY back in May. Following the screening, I moderated a lively panel discussion on the topic of bullying. This event will helped support the many programs and activities to help educate and inform our youth and their parents regarding bullying issues in our East Bay schools and in the community. Education, training, and programs dedicated towards increased sensitivity and awareness are critical to reduce the number of LGBT suicides, as are anti-bullying efforts.
As a private citizen in Alameda, I spoke out in favor of the Alameda Unified School District's implementation of an anti-bullying curriculum (LGBT Lesson #9) that teaches students, kindergarten through fifth grade, about all families including those with LGBT/same-sex parents. I served for three years on the City of Alameda's Social Service Human Relations Board (SSHRB), including serving as Board President, a role my colleagues on the SSHRB voted me into. On the SSHRB, I supported and worked with the SSHRB subcommittee Alamedans Together Against Hate (ATAH) to promote tolerance, including for the LGBT community, and ensure that people can live, work, play and worship in Alameda free of discrimination.