Rahm is Proposing to Do Away With LGBT Council

Though an influential group of 200 lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Chicagoans stood up behind Mayor Rahm Emanuel and endorsed his candidacy earlier this year, many LGBT activists in the Windy City expressed alarmed at the new mayor’s latest move: a proposed budget that eviscerates their community’s city-sponsored advisory council.

At the latest meeting of the city’s Advisory Council on LGBT Issues, the Windy City Times reports that many council members are hoping to “go down fighting” against their council being combined with the city’s Women’s Issues Advisory Council under a new name: the advisory council on Gender and Sexuality.

Some council members object both that the words “lesbian,” “gay,” “bisexual” and “transgender” have been removed from the council’s title and that they were not consulted with concerning the change.

In a previous story addressing the cuts, the Windy City Times reported that the council’s director, Bill Greaves, will lose his job as of January 1. The council’s chair Beth Kelly said the change “sends a message that Chicago does not care about this community.” Kit Duffy, the first-ever LGBT liaison to the mayor, added that the change “signals a lack of recognition, and I think it signals an ignorance of impact.”