MONROE, LA (WAFB) - Monroe is home to University of Louisiana Monroe, Duck Dynasty...and soon to be a chapter of Equality Louisiana? Bruce Parker of Baton Rouge helped co-found the state-wide Equality Louisiana four or five years ago, and this Saturday, the organization moves to enlist and inform interested people in Monroe.
This Saturday EQLA holds what it calls a "Community Connect", a public gathering. It'll be hosted in the Ouachita Valley Branch Library in West Monroe from 1:30 p.m. - 4 p.m. When asked if this will be Monroe's first-ever organized LGBT meeting, Parker said, "We've have an event there in the last five years. There's a small community there which also includes parents of LGBT people."
Parker says, actually it was a parent who contacted Equality Louisiana about setting up something this time. "She had a lesbian daughter and was really interested in building an organization to support LGBT people in the Monroe."
Rather than viewing the meeting as a recruiting rally, Parker says it's more an informational get-together. "It's sort of like about what Equality Louisiana is, what we're working on in the session, and how you can support us."
Organization president Baylor Boyd said, "EQLA's Community Connects are a great opportunity to learn about state-level LGBT-related legislation coming up in the 2015 legislative session that will begin April 13. We will discuss the big issues faced by our community and the different ways we can all advocate for LGBT people, no matter how hectic our schedules are!"
Britt asked if this is the organization's first push into the more conservative northern part of the state. Parker says cities with college campuses tend to be friendly to such efforts. And though "there hasn't been a strong group there in Monroe, there were people who are interested," he said.