Northwest Washington Synod assembly calls for education, advocacy on behalf of transgender neighbors

The Northwest Washington Synod (ELCA) passed “A Statement of Support of Congregational Education Measures Regarding Transgender Individuals.”

ReconcilingWorks affirms the assembly’s actions and commits to be a resource for congregations, their members, synod leaders, and pastors as they learn more about and educate on behalf of their transgender and non-binary neighbors.

The resolution cites the 2013 ELCA Churchwide Assembly resolution to “commit to principles of nondiscrimination in employment on the basis of actual or perceived gender identity,” the 2008 synod decision to become a Reconciling in Christ synod, and Bishop Kirby Unti’s latest statement “regarding Washington Initiative 1515, which would repeal
[Washington’s] non-discrimination protections [ensuring transgender people] are treated fairly and equally under the law.”

C-resolutionNow, therefore, be it RESOLVED that this Assembly encourages individuals and congregations in the Northwest Washington Synod –

  • to educate members, visitors, neighbors and the community about gender identity and expression;
  • to learn about issues facing the transgender community and the political and policy issues that prevent the full inclusion of transgender individuals;
  • to encourage lay and rostered leaders to speak out in support of the transgender community and people of non-binary gender identities and expressions;
  • to advocate against Washington Initiative 1515, which would repeal our state’s non-discrimination protections that for 10 years have helped ensure our transgender family members, friends, co-workers, and neighbors are treated fairly and equally under the law.

The assembly also passed resolutions repudiating the “European Christian-derived ‘doctrine of discovery,'” supporting Muslim neighbors, and request that the ELCA Churchwide Assembly affirm that Black Lives Matter.