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Since its inception, NYCLA has been at the forefront of most legal debates in the country. We have provided legal education for more than 40 years.
Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox
Utah State Capitol Complex Suite 220
P.O. Box 142325
Salt Lake City, Utah84114-2325
Lt. Gov. Cox,
I am writing to you on behalf of the New York County Lawyers Association’s Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Issues Committee, to commend you on your remarks delivered Monday, June 13, 2016, on the grounds of the Salt Lake City and County Building.
When our Association was founded in 1908, the only existing bar association in Manhattan, New York, precluded some lawyers from membership by virtue of ethnicity, religion, gender and race. Although other factors contributed to the atmosphere that produced our new association, none was as strong as “selective membership” in other bar associations. Not only were large groups of lawyers denied affiliation with a bar association, but independent perspectives on the judicial system were also curtailed. Throughout its history, one of the Association’s bedrock principles has been inclusion. With that in mind, our membership applies its knowledge and experience in the field of law to the promotion of the public good and ensuring access to justice for all. We have been at the forefront of most legal debates in the country.
For instance, the Association’s groundbreaking 1952 report on public apathy toward delinquent children brought wide acclaim and won the endorsement of Mayor Robert F. Wagner. In 1943, the Association refused to renew its affiliation with the American Bar Association for its refusal to admit Black lawyers. In 1949, we sponsored a conference on civil rights in the post-World-War-II era. Our Women’s Rights Committee challenged and helped change provisions of the Internal Revenue Code that had a discriminatory impact on women and married couples.
Your June 13, 2016 remarks were amazing and heartfelt. Moreover, your remarks transcended partisan politics and addressed the issues missing from public discourse, which are dignity and respect for all. As a society, we are at “the crossroads of hate” and must come together and not retreat to “over-worn policy corners and demagoguery.”
We applaud you on your invitation to the citizens of the great state of Utah to be kind, brave, and to “lead the nation with love in the face of adversity.” We are with the citizens of Utah.
On behalf of all LGBT Americans, we invite you to continue your efforts to promote inclusion of the LGBT community in Utah’s legal discourse.
Very truly yours,
George M. Santana, Esq.
Carol A. Si d
President-Elect Michael J. McNamara
Vincent T. Chang
14 Vesey Street, New York, NY 10007 • Tel. 212-267-6646 • Fax: 212-406-9252 • www.nycla.org