ST. PAUL (WCCO) – People pushing for gay marriage in Minnesota are holding a rally outside the State Capitol — and they have the support of Gov. Mark Dayton.
In fact, he’s scheduled to speak at the rally.
The Rally for Equality began around noon and included people from all over the state who are hoping to push for change. Members of the gay and lesbian community were scheduled to share their stories with attendees and legislators to push for the legalization of gay marriage. Another hot button issue being discussed is bullying.
Members of the rally include a few gay students who will be sharing their stories of being bullied because of their sexual orientation. A bill introduced this session, called the Safe Schools For All act, would change the wording in a law to protect students against bullying.
In addition to race and sex, it would add the words sexual orientation, gender or disability to that legislation.
Monica Meyer, of OutFront Minnesota, said students across Minnesota who are gay or lesbian are dealing with issues when it comes to bullying. Some will share their struggles with lawmakers.
“I think it’s really hard to look at a student who’s talking about their life and what they hope to be in the future and letting legislators know that future is jeopardized by the fact that they aren’t safe in their schools,” she said, “and that you can’t get a good education when you skip school because you’re afraid of getting bullied and harassed.”
That legislation has been heard in a few committee-level hearings but it’s been voted down. While the group isn’t sure if the bill will get any traction this year, Meyer said it’s really about laying a foundation so they can make progress down the road.