Republicans in Washington Strip Funding for LGBTQ Centers in Philadelphia and Reading

People dance on a parade float during the annual Pride Day Parade, Sunday June 8, 2014, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/ Joseph Kaczmarek)

By Sean Kitchen

July 19, 2023

This is one of the most obvious and disgusting examples of bigotry that I have seen in my career and in my life,” said US Rep. Brendan Boyle following the GOP’s vote to strip funding for the LGBT centers.

Continuing their attacks against the LGBT community, Republicans in the US House of Representatives voted to strip funding for three LGBTQ community centers during an Appropriations Committee meeting on Tuesday. Two of the affected centers are the William Way LGBT Center in Center City Philadelphia and the LGBT Center of Greater Reading.

US Reps. Chrissy Houlahan (D-Chester) and Brendan Boyle (D-Philadelphia) advocated for $970,000 for the Greater Reading LGBT Center and $1.8 million William Way LGBT Center that would help fund renovations and expansions for the centers.

Houlahan and Boyle, who are not committee members, took to social media to highlight their outrage over the move.

“A lot of what happens in committees goes unnoticed, but I want all Americans to know what Republicans in the Appropriations Committee are doing RIGHT NOW,” Houlahan said in a tweet. “They are trying to strip Community Project Funding for orgs related to our LGBTQ+ communities — including one in PA-06.”

Boyle released a video on his twitter account explaining what House Republicans did during the committee meeting. Boyle explained that as a member of Congress he is allowed to designate up to 15 worthy recipients of federal funding and one of those was the William Way LGBT Center.

The Republican majority filed an amendment that out of over 3,800 projects from members of Congress—3,800 that have been approved—they are now voting to strip funding from the only three projects that have LGBTQ in the organization’s name,” Boyle said in the video.

“This is one of the most obvious and disgusting examples of bigotry that I have seen in my career and in my life,” he added.
It is not just Republicans on the federal level who are using their positions of power to attack the LGBT Community.

This year, there have been close to 500 bills targeting members of the LGBTQ community introduced by Republicans in state legislatures around the country, according to the American Civil Liberties Union.

The Trevor Project released a poll earlier this year highlighting how anti-LGBT legislation harms the mental health of young people within the community. The poll found an “overwhelming majority of LGBTQ youth have been negatively impacted by recent debates and laws around the anti-LGBTQ policies and that many have also experienced victimization as a result.”

Author

  • Sean Kitchen

    Sean Kitchen is the Keystone’s political correspondent, based in Harrisburg. Sean is originally from Philadelphia and spent five years working as a writer and researcher for Pennsylvania Spotlight.

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