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Letter from President Maureen O'Connor and President-Elect Allen Omoto on 6/15/2012

Dear SPSSI members,

As we approach the occasion of our 9th Biennial Conference in Charlotte, NC, we wanted to update you on the preparations that have been made to voice SPSSI’s opposition to North Carolina’s recent passage SB 514, a law which bans legal recognition of same-sex marriage.

In response to the law’s passage five weeks ago, we have rapidly organized a program of activities and events to bring marriage equality and research on LGBT issues to the forefront of the Conference and to draw psychologists and local advocates together to discuss the policy challenges that lie ahead in North Carolina and throughout the U.S.

Special symposium: “The North Carolina Marriage Equality Amendment: Psychology, Policy, and Advocacy” - 11:10am – 12:20 pm on Friday June 22, Juniper Room
President-Elect Allen Omoto will chair this special session on same-sex marriage in North Carolina with speakers Clay Eddleman, M.D, a local civil rights campaigner and Emeritus Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Emory University's School of Medicine, Erica Wise, Ph.D., Clinical Professor & Director of Psychological Services at The Department of Psychology Community Clinic, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill and incoming President of the North Carolina Psychological Association, a group that actively worked against the discriminatory measure, and Alex Ingrams, the SPSSI Policy Coordinator.

Sign-on letter to the NC Governor
SPSSI has drafted a letter to the Governor of North Carolina expressing its concern about SB 514 and similar marriage bans, including pointing out the negative effects of this legislation on our conference. The letter will be available for attendees to add their signatures throughout the conference and will soon be posted on the SPSSI website.

Event flyer
SPSSI has prepared a dual-purpose flyer for conference attendees. One side of the flyer lists all of the Conference sessions and presentations related to same-sex marriage and LGBT issues. The other side of the flyer offers specific advocacy tips and resources for same-sex marriage support in North Carolina and beyond; these tips and resources also can be downloaded here. Hard copies of the flyer will be available at the registration desk throughout the conference.

Marriage Equality stickers
Stickers will be available around the conference for distribution to attendees to wear to express their support for marriage equality.

Further information on North Carolina SB 514 is available on the SPSSI website. Please click here.

We look forward to welcoming many of you to the conference and having you participate in these important program efforts to bring the vital perspective of psychological research and teaching to one of the most pressing civil rights issues of our times. Please share the resources with colleagues and friends, and come sign the letter and wear a Marriage Equality sticker at the Conference!


Maureen O'Connor, Ph.D., J.D.
SPSSI President

Allen Omoto, Ph.D.
SPSSI President-Elect