J-Pride: SCOTUS decision a hard earned victory and powerful tool to use against ongoing oppression

By Jayce Koester • J-Pride Coordinator

JFCS celebrates the landmark U.S. Supreme Court civil rights decision on June 15 that protects LGBTQIA+ employees from workplace discrimination. This hard earned victory after generations of advocacy is a powerful tool to continue addressing ongoing oppression, including the recent U.S. Department of Health and Human Service (HHS) decision to eliminate critical anti-discrimination protections in the Affordable Care Act (ACA) that specifically target the transgender community. This ruling by the Supreme Court falls within a week of the murders Black trans women of Riah Milton and Dominique “Rem’mie” Fells. Their deaths, unjust and long before their time, are a clear and ever present reminder that this victory is one stop on the long, demanding pathway towards a more just and whole world.

This Supreme Court ruling is a significant advancement in addressing transgender rights provided by the ACA, which are currently under attack. The decision by the Supreme Court makes it illegal to discriminate on the basis of a person’s sex, sexual orientation and gender identity. We celebrate this landmark victory and mourn the deaths of those who lost their lives due to systemic injustice.

J-Pride, a program of JFCS, has the mission to engage Minnesota based Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex, and Asexual (LGBTQIA+) Jews and their allies to come together for social events, community gatherings, celebrations, and educational opportunities.

J-Pride is grounded in our Jewish traditions, and recognizes that our ancestors are always present in our victories, and we express our deep gratitude to each generation who has fought for our rights throughout the years.

In honor of Pride month, and in light of traditional Pride activities being canceled due to the pandemic, J-Pride launched a new blog this month. “We’ve built this stage to share our stories – through words, photos, art, dance, music and video,” J-Pride Coordinator Jayce Koester said. “This is our showcase of how we celebrate ourselves, our identity, our Pride. This is our 2020 LGBTQIA+ Jewish community Pride Parade!” Please join the parade and celebrate with us in community! You can submit your entries here: https://forms.gle/6qwpncGab92TNZeXA.