Freedom For All Massachusetts, our campaign to defend #TransLawMA at the ballot this November, is excited to introduce Phil Sherwood as our Campaign Manager.
Phil comes to Freedom For All MA with more than 17 years experience in public and legislative affairs as well as campaign managing. He’s led the strategic planning for more than 75 electoral and or issue based campaigns. These experiences and qualifications mean Phil has a strategic plan and strong vision to bring us to victory in November.
Phil is not LGBTQ, but a husband and father raising two young children who strongly believes in the rights of transgender people to be protected in housing, employment, and public accommodations, and building a world for his children where people can be free from discrimination and harassment.
Below, see Phil’s answers to a few questions regarding our campaign, as well as his own reasons for supporting non-discrimination. After reading, be sure to click here to join our statewide action team and join Phil on the front lines to defend #TransLawMA!
What inspired you to work with Freedom for All Massachusetts?
MA has led the nation on equality issues and has a proud reputation of standing up against discrimination. Additionally, Freedom for All Massachusetts has one of the broadest and diverse coalitions I’ve ever seen – on any issue.
When you first heard that a ballot initiative to repeal protections for transgender people would be on the MA ballot, what did you think?
I wasn’t surprised to hear there was an effort to repeal protections on the MA ballot as the threshold for getting questions on the ballot is relatively low – providing opportunity for fringe outside groups to promote their agendas.
What’s the significance of this campaign – here in Massachusetts? And across the country?
MA is seen as a leader nationally on equal rights and standing up for the safety and dignity of all residents. Whether it’s Marriage Equality, bullying or standing up to outside hate groups – MA has earned the reputation on being on the right side of many important issues. If this anti-discrimination law is stripped here in MA outside groups will much more aggressive taking their agenda to other states in an effort to target minority groups for exclusion.
This won’t be an easy lift. What do you think is key to upholding MA’s non-discrimination law?
We know these equal right protections have bipartisan support in addition to broad support from the business community and advocacy community – the public too understands that discrimination is wrong. Many people though do not completely understand what it means to be transgender or know why these equal protection laws were needed in the first place. This creates a scenario where outside special interest groups can push fear based misinformation campaigns under the guise of protecting the public from predators. Those seeking to repeal this antidiscrimination law seek to single out people who are different and push an agenda that undermines fairness. Their actions foster an environment where kids in particular are more likely to be harassed for being different.
How would you recommend every day Bay Staters get involved in this campaign?
Give time. Give $. And then trust your instincts, support fairness for all and Vote Yes.