Statement of NOW President Terry O’Neill on the shootings at Pulse in Orlando

The horrific attack in Orlando was in every sense a crime against humanity. The LGBTQIA community came to a club to celebrate Pride month, to dance, to live openly and joyously — to be human. And then someone whose heart was filled with hate savagely took that humanity away from them.

We cannot say that we live in a free society when LGBTQIA people have to always wonder if horrific violence is just around the corner, or creeping up in the rearview mirror. Hate crimes against this community haven’t disappeared just because courts, political leaders and businesses now support expanded rights. We must remain vigilant against the threat of violence, but we must also speak out against a climate of bigotry and hatred that rejects or devalues LGBTQIA rights.

Activists and leaders of the National Organization for Women will continue to work with our allies to reject the politics of hate and discrimination. We will not be divided by gender, sexual orientation, religion or politics. We are united in celebrating our differences, and strengthened by our love for one another.

Contact: Tamara Stein,, 951-547-1241