Young Adults Reach Halfway Point in 97 Mile Walk Across Phoenix

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SOULFORCE PRESS RELEASE: August 12, 2009
For Immediate Release
Contact: Meg Sneed, Right to Marry: Arizona, 623-262-6696
Carlos Perez de Alejo, Soulforce Media Director, 321-948-3423
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(Phoenix, AZ) On Sunday, August 9, six young adults from Right to Marry: Arizona began a 97 mile walk from the Bible Church in Scottsdale to spark dialogue on marriage equality with religious leaders, city and state officials, and everyday citizens of Arizona.  With over 40 miles covered and dozens of challenging conversations behind them, the “equality walkers” have reached the halfway point in their journey.  Despite the heat, Meg Sneed and her team of six young equality advocates are determined to press on, promoting equal rights for Arizona’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) citizens.

“We’ve had a great walk so far,” says Melissa Halverson, co-director of Right to Marry: Arizona, a campaign developed by Soulforce Q, the youth-driven arm of Soulforce, a national LGBT social justice organization.  “It’s tough conversations like the one’s we’ve had on the walk that will help bring marriage equality to Arizona, a state that has denied equal protection for LGBT folks for over nine decades.” 

This year marks the second annual Right to Marry walk in Arizona.  Sneed developed the campaign after participating in a three-day walk for breast cancer research.  As a cancer survivor, Sneed found the walk inspiring and decided to adapt her experience to the marriage equality debate in Arizona, walking a mile for every year the state has denied equal protection for its LGBT citizens.

“This year we’re focusing on the organizations and individuals who have spoken out strongly against marriage equality,” says Sneed.  “We’re stopping at churches, parks, and city hall to say enough is enough; it’s time to recognize and respect the rights of all the people in Arizona.”

The walkers have four days left in their trip, and will take on the following route:

  • Day 4: Wednesday, August 12th: Dayspring United Methodist Church to Cesar Chavez Park
  • Day 5: Thursday, August 13th: Cesar Chavez Park to  Glendale City Hall
  • Day 6: Friday, August 14th: Glendale City Hall to Catholic Bishop
  • Day 7: Saturday, August 15th: Catholic Bishop to Phoenix City Hall 

Soulforce Q is the young adult division of Soulforce, a social justice organization that works to end political and religious oppression of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people through relentless nonviolent resistance. For more information, visit www.soulforce.org/righttomarry                                                                                                   ###                                                                                                                                                       

                                                                                                                             

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