SC Equality’s website recently underwent a facelift. The group’s new executive director, Christine Johnson, is looking to do the same for LGBT residents.

“We want lawmakers to know that our community reaches every county in South Carolina,” she said in a release. We echo the sentiment of the Constitution when we say, equal means everyone.”

It truly means just that! Everyone in the South Carolina LGBT community must be willing to do their equal share to bring about real change within the state. Every voice needs to be heard and every person needs to participate in the process.

Johnson says, “When we work together…and cooperate with like forces, we are fiercely powerful.”

SC Equality hopes they’ll be able to create more opportunities for progress, and is working hard to blend the voices of the LGBT communities through its “State of the State” survey. The survey, which takes approximately 10 minutes to complete, can be a valuable tool to achieve SC Equality’s goals for greater cooperation. At the end of the campaign, which is open until Sept. 20, SC Equality will hold a press conference at the State House to share its results. By sharing the survey results with both citizens and elected officials, SC Equality hopes the process of giving our state a facelift will truly begin.

Dealing with lawmakers is probably not going to be Johnson’s most challenging obstacle. In South Carolina, wedges that exist between essential groups are so deeply lodged that it will almost take an act of God to remove them. Unifying organizations, cultural differences and people will probably be her greatest hurdle to jump. Yet, Johnson appears to be committed and ready to breathe new life into the Palmetto State’s LGBT communities. She understands the value of diversity within the operations of any organization and its activities, which can help begin healing old wounds that have been far too long left opened within the state and among its LGBT people.

“Our board should reflect this community,” Johnson insists “It must have balanced representation from the trans, Latino and African American communities.”

Johnson and her supporting staff understand that changes can only come about if they are able to gain and maintain supporters from both inside and outside the LGBT community. The “State of the State” survey is one tool being used to accomplish “equality and discrimination free South Carolina”, but they need your help.

To take the “State of the State” survey, so your voice is heard and counted, please visit surveymonkey.com/s/PR2SCZP. For more information concerning South Carolina Equality, visit scequality.org.

Deaidre Newby

Deaidre Newby is a former editorial intern for QNotes.