WASHINGTON – The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Congressional Staff Association (CSA) and Congressional Muslim Staff Association (CMSA) held a joint vigil and moment of silence on the U.S. Capitol steps today to stand in solidarity with the Orlando community and remember the victims of Sunday’s shooting during Latin night at Pulse, an LGBT night club in Orlando, FL. At the vigil, the Chaplain of the U.S. House of Representatives, Father Patrick J. Conroy, gave an interfaith prayer followed by a moment of silence for those lives lost or injured.
The vigil was attended by Members of Congress as well as congressional staff and interns. Several staff associations also attended, including the Congressional Hispanic Staff Association, the Women’s Congressional Staff Association, the Gay and Lesbian Allied Senate Staff (GLASS), Congressional Black Associates, and the Congressional Asian Pacific American Staff Association.
“In the aftermath of this heinous act of terror, today we join together on the Capitol steps to show the world that we are stronger when we stand together,” said Mitchell Rivard, President of the LGBT Congressional Staff Association. “Our diversity and love of country makes us better citizens. Hand in hand, we will stand together to speak out against violence and hate – today, tomorrow and in the future.”
“Time and time again the LGBT community has stood by the Muslim community in the face of hate, bigotry and marginalization,” said Omair Mirza, President of the Congressional Muslim Staff Association. “Today, shoulder to shoulder, we proudly stand with LGBT congressional staff to honor the victims and send a strong message that American Muslims will not tolerate hateful words or acts of violence against our friends in the LGBT community. During this Holy month of Ramadan, we will keep the victims and their loved ones in our prayers.”
The LGBT CSA is a non-partisan, officially sanctioned organization in the U.S. House of Representatives. To learn more about the organization, please visit www.lgbtcsa.org.
The Congressional Muslim Staff Association (CMSA) is a non-partisan, bicameral organization that strives to improve the institution of Congress by serving Muslim staffers on Capitol Hill and create a pipeline for young Muslims who aspire to serve their country.