Marriage Equality USA (MEUSA) announced Wednesday a series of projects and celebrations to commemorate 20 years of grassroots organizing, culminating this spring in the closing of the organization and the transition of key organization resources to continue the work toward full lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) equality.
“I have deep pride and admiration for the tens of thousands MEUSA grassroots volunteers and supporters whose dedication and perseverance culminated in the Supreme Court victory last summer,” said MEUSA Executive Director Brian Silva. “Our movement is stronger when we work collaboratively and empower our communities to take action – that is a key part of MEUSA’s success and longevity.”
The organization’s 20-Year Anniversary Celebrations include:
- A series of anniversary celebration parties by MEUSA Chapters across the country – (Info & RSVP at marriageequality.org/
- Publishing a book of member stories and experiences to preserve the grassroots contributions of the movement; and
- Donating the organizations’ history to the largest LGBTQ archive in the world – the ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives
After almost a year and a half of conversations with members and partners, MEUSA will conclude independent operations this spring after accomplishing their mission of marriage equality in all 50 states and at the federal level. However, the organization has taken deliberate steps to insure 20 years of knowledge and programs are rededicated to the movement and used for full LGBTQ equality, including:
- MEUSA’s National Equality Action Team (NEAT) – the grassroots field program that has helped make over 100,000 phone calls in 15 marriage campaigns – is moving to a new home and will continue its work in new areas for LGBTQ equality.
- Supporting a number of core volunteers by investing both money and resources to help them launch new initiatives for LGBTQ equality that build on MEUSA’s work.
- Continue to provide information and resources, both online and through our alumni, for those fighting for marriage and full LGBTQ equality in the United States and around the world.
“The work of grassroots organizations is central to our community’s progress towards full LGBTQ equality and justice, and MEUSA has held that space in the marriage movement for 20 years,” said MEUSA Board Chair Steve Huesing. “I am proud of what we have accomplished and excited that what we created will continue to support the work ahead.”
What began as a protest by a small group of organizers in New York in 1996, soon grew in to three interconnected organizations (MEUSA, Marriage Equality California [MECA], and the oldest, Marriage Equality New York [MENY]) working for civil marriage equality. MEUSA is the nation’s oldest and largest grassroots organization dedicated to this issue and has a rich history of activism and education for marriage equality. For more information on our history visit marriageequality.
More details about both MEUSA’s 20-Year Anniversary and its transition will be released by the organization in the coming weeks.