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LGBTQ+: Arkansas Group Launches Grant Fund for Nonprofit Groups as Biden Calls Out Bills, Equality Act On Coming Out Day

LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 13: A defiant fist is raised at a vigil for the worst mass shooing in United States history on June 13, 2016 in Los Angeles, United States. A gunman killed 49 people and wounded 53 others at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida early yesterday morning before suspect Omar Mateen also died on-scene. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)

The Arkansas Community Foundation said Monday that a gateway for grants up to $150,000 is now available to assist groups that directly support LGBTQ+ Arkansans via programs, events, or projects.

The Alice L. Walton Foundation and Olivia and Tom Walton’s Walton Family Foundation have donated to the Arkansas LGBTQ+ Advancement Fund. The Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation has provided further financial assistance.

LGBTQ+

WASHINGTON, DC – JUNE 15: Joseph Fons holding a Pride Flag in front of the U.S. Supreme Court building after the court ruled that LGBTQ people can not be disciplined or fired based on their sexual orientation, Washington, DC, June 15, 2020. With Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Neil Gorsuch joining the Democratic appointees, the court ruled 6-3 that the Civil Rights Act of 1964 bans bias based on sexual orientation or gender identity. Fons is wearing a Black Lives Matter mask with the words ‘I Can’t Breathe’, as a precaution against Covid-19. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Arkansas Community Foundation President Heather Larkin told KARK that the funds would enable LGBTQ-serving organizations in our state to extend their influence on communities and assist Arkansans work together to create a more accepting and supportive environment for all of us.

The fund will provide grants to Arkansas-based groups that help the LGBTQ+ community. According to ACF, national companies with a local presence, established in-state connections, and strong community links will be eligible.

Funding may be available via program or impact grants.

ALSO READ: Arkansas’s Attorney General: Biden Weaponizing the Department of Justice Against ‘Our Citizens’

Biden Disusses Anti-LGBT Bills, Equality Act On Coming Out Day

On National Coming Out Day, President Biden advocated for the rejection of anti-LGBTQ+ legislation in state legislatures and the approval of the Equality Act in the Senate.

According to The Hill, Biden referred to state law that discriminates against the LGBTQ+ population as “discriminatory.” Several anti-LGBT laws have passed in states like Texas, Arkansas, and Tennessee, while states like Texas, Arkansas, and Tennessee are considering legislation that would limit transgender individuals.

Discrimination based on sex, sexual orientation, or gender identity would be prohibited under the Equality Act. The law was approved by the House mainly along party lines earlier this year, but it has yet to be taken up by the Senate.

Regardless of whether or not the person has come out, Biden said on Monday, he wants the LGBTQ+ community to know that they are loved and welcomed.

He said his administration has made progress toward expanding safeguards and equitable opportunities, including as preserving transgender Americans’ ability to serve in the military and supporting human rights throughout the world.

In the United States, National Coming Out Day was first observed in 1988 to promote awareness for the LGBTQ+ population.

RELATED ARTICLE: Missouri, Arkansas Join West Virginia in Rejecting Biden’s Bank Snooping Plans

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