FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Ft. Lauderdale, FL — The Matthew Shepard Foundation and MillerCoors have teamed up once again for a Stay Loud, Be Proud hate crimes training. The beer brand has really stepped up over the last several years with their support of LGBT organizations. The Foundation sees this time as essential to train communities on how to report hate crimes, as well as make sure they know law enforcement can be their friend.
Up to 61% of hate crimes are not reported because people fear re-victimization or not being believed at all. This is why the Matthew Shepard Foundation and MillerCoors are taking this presentation and meet-and-greet featuring local law enforcement, government officials, and Foundation staff including the Shepards on the road. In May, they held a Stay Loud, Be Proud panel and reception in Dallas to much success.
The event is two-parts. The first part takes place at the Pride Center at Equality Park (2040 N Dixie Hwy, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33305) and is open to press from 12-2. The panel is from 2-4. Attendees can expect to learn the basics of hate crime laws and to be able to chat with the Foundation about their progress heading into their 20th year.
“Florida is such an important state right now, when it comes to hate crime reporting. You may be surprised to learn that Miami-Dade county hasn’t reported a single hate crime in a decade. But that is not because they do not exist. We need to get people to report and we need officers to know proper intake of these crimes,” Executive Director Jason Marsden said.
Judy and Dennis Shepard, the parents of Matthew Shepard–whose brutal and homophobic murder was the impetus for the Matthew Shepard Foundation as well as the Hate Crimes Prevention Act–will be present to answer questions after the panel. There will be a reception sponsored by MillerCoors at Rumors Bar & Grill (2426 Wilton Dr, Wilton Manors, FL 33305).
The event is free, open to the public, and you can sign up to attend here.
The Matthew Shepard Foundation’s longstanding mission is to erase hate by replacing it with understanding, compassion and acceptance. Through local, regional and national outreach, we empower individuals to find their voice to create change and challenge communities to identify and address hate that lives within their schools, neighborhoods and homes.
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