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DELTA PHI UPSILON APPLAUDS AND SUPPORTS UNITED STATES SENATES’ REPEAL OF DON’T ASK, DON’T TELL

12-20-2010 12:34 PM CET | Associations & Organizations

Press release from: Delta Phi Upsilon Fraternity

Houston, TX – 12/20/2010 – This weekend, in a historic vote for gay rights, the United States Senate agreed to end the military's 17-year ban on openly gay troops. President Barack Obama is expected to sign into law, legislation to overturn the Clinton-era policy known as "don't ask, don't tell," which since its inception in 1993, has been used to dismiss more than 14, 000 service members on the basis of their sexual orientation.

“Don't ask, don't tell” (DADT) is the term commonly used for the policy restricting the United States military from efforts to discover or reveal closeted gay, lesbian, and bisexual service members or applicants, while barring those who are openly gay, lesbian, or bisexual from military service.

The act prohibits any homosexual or bisexual person from disclosing his or her sexual orientation or from speaking about any homosexual relationships, including marriages or other familial attributes, while serving in the United States armed forces. The act specifies that service members who disclose they are homosexual or engage in homosexual conduct shall be discharged except when a service member's conduct was "for the purpose of avoiding or terminating military service" or when it "would not be in the best interest of the armed forces."
With a 65-31 vote, the United States now follows the examples of other countries, including the United Kingdom, France, Russia, Taiwan, Australia, Israel, Argentina and Canada in ensuring that our nation’s military forces will no longer be denied the service of thousands of patriotic Americans who happen to be gay or lesbian, while protecting those who already serve in an exemplary manner, from the fear of being kicked out.

According to the Williams Institute at UCLA, there are at least 66,000 gay Americans currently on active duty to go along with 1 million gay veterans.

As a leader in the black gay fraternal world and a long proponent of gay rights, Delta Phi Upsilon Fraternity welcomes this long overdue move by the United States Senate to extend equality to the gay community and urges President Barack Obama to sign this legislation into law at the earliest opportunity.

The fraternity’s National President, Larrel A. Green is quoted as saying, “I am certain that I speak for the my colleagues in the Black gay fraternal world in welcoming this move by first the United States House of Representatives, then the Senate. Today is a defining moment in the history of our military and our country as a whole. Decades ago, it took an act of congress to ensure that African-Americans could serve their country and now again, our leaders have decisively shown that viable segments of our society should not be marginalized but should instead enjoy all the benefits of being a citizen of the greatest country in the world.”

National President Green went on to say that “Delta Phi Upsilon has long championed for the repeal of this destructive policy through its Political Empowerment national program target, and we are ecstatic to retire this fight from our program calendar. We recognize though that the battle continues in the struggle for, among others, marriage equality and federal protection against discrimination in housing and employment.”

Delta Phi Upsilon Fraternity, Incorporated (DPhiU) is a national service organization that was founded on the campus of Florida State University in Tallahassee, FL in 1985. It is the oldest Greek-lettered organization established by gay men of color. It is comprised of 300+ members in city chapters in five regions across the United States. Its membership includes gay men who exemplify its motto of “Service to our Kind,” through academic excellence, certified leadership skills, and who are consistently involved in creating change in the global community through the programs of service embodied in the fraternity’s national program goals. Through its core mission, Delta Phi Upsilon has dedicated itself to improving the quality of life for its members and those it serves. The organization is led by its 5th National President Larrel A. Green of Houston, TX.

For more information about Delta Phi Upsilon Fraternity, Inc., log on to www.dphiu.org.

401 Branard St. Houston, TX 77257

Contact: Darryl Wilson, Jr.
Executive Director
Office: 713-800-0802
Cell: 832-654-3605
Email: execdir@dphiu.org

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