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June 2024 OHR Newsletter Director’s Message (English)

Tuesday, June 18, 2024

June 2024 OHR Newsletter Director’s Message 

Dear Residents, Neighbors, and Friends: 

As we welcome June, I am filled with pride and excitement to recognize two significant celebrations that resonate deeply with our core values: Pride Month and Immigrant Heritage Month. These observances provide us with a unique opportunity to reflect on the rich diversity that shapes our communities and to reaffirm our commitment to inclusivity, equality, and respect for all. 

Pride Month honors the history, achievements, and ongoing struggles of the LGBTQIA+ community. It reminds us of the courageous individuals who have fought tirelessly for the right to express their authentic selves and celebrates the progress we have made toward a more inclusive society. As a government agency dedicated to combating discrimination, we have a critical duty to support and protect the rights of LGBTQIA+ individuals, ensuring that everyone can live with dignity and pride. In line with this commitment, we have launched a new LGBTQIA+ Resource Portal and Safe Bathrooms DC, providing essential information and resources to benefit many. 

Also celebrated in June, Immigrant Heritage Month honors the diverse tapestry of cultures, traditions, and stories that immigrants bring to our nation. Recent Census data shows that approximately 14 percent of the District of Columbia’s entire population is foreign-born, highlighting the crucial role immigrants play in our community. The uniqueness and strength of our city are built on the resilience of immigrants who have enriched our lives. At the Office of Human Rights, we address the various challenges immigrants face daily, such as language barriers that can hinder access to crucial information and resources. As we approach this month, let's remind ourselves of the importance of learning from each other and continue our efforts to build a community where everyone has a fair chance to thrive. 

Our commitment to diversity and inclusion is not just a statement but a guiding principle that shapes our actions and policies. This June, I encourage each of you to participate in the various District events and activities planned for Pride Month and Immigrant Heritage Month. Engage in meaningful conversations, educate yourselves and others, and celebrate the rich diversity that makes our community strong! 

In Solidarity, 

Kenneth Saunders