Feb 17, 2020
PFLAG may not be the most high-profile LGBTQ+ organization, but it is the oldest, largest and the first, in 1973, to create a safe space for the parents, friends and families of LGBTQ+ youth. It was organized by Jeanne Manford, after seeing her son Morty, a young gay man, beaten at a demonstration covered on the nightly news. She became his advocate, joining him at a gay rights rally wearing a sign that read, Parents of Gays United in Support for Our Children. She was applauded by young people appreciative of her support. From this experience, PFLAG was founded and is now powered by 400 volunteer chapters across the country. Its pillars of support, education and advocacy describe their chapters as places to be heard, learn, and stand up for loved ones. Advocacy takes place in hearings on Capitol Hill and in state capitols, where hostile political environments are generating punitive legislation, often aimed at transgender youth. The work is challenging but executive director Brian Bond remains positive, he says, because of the love and commitment of parents to their children. Hear Brian speak about his own journey and the path forward for PFLAG.