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City of WeHo Announces Events to Commemorate Harvey Milk Day



The City of West Hollywood will mark the third annual Harvey Milk Day with several special events on Monday, May 21, 2012 and Tuesday, May 22, 2012. On Monday, May 21, 2012 at 6:30 p.m., during the regularly-scheduled West Hollywood City Council meeting, the book, “The Harvey Milk Story” will be presented to local West Hollywood-area elementary schools in the Council Chambers at West Hollywood Park, 625 N. San Vicente Boulevard. Immediately following, a Jeff Tsuji-designed Harvey Milk banner will be unveiled.

“Perhaps more than any other modern figure, Harvey Milk’s life and political career embody the rise of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) civil rights movement,” said West Hollywood Mayor Jeffrey Prang. “At a time when society forced many to lead closeted lives, Harvey Milk dared to hope for a time when LGBT people could live openly, freely, equally. So, each year we celebrate the life of Harvey Milk to remind us all to embrace our diversity, and to keep alive his vision for equal rights for all,” added Mayor Prang.

The panel discussion “Got Milk – The Collision of the Arts & Social Justice in the Post-Harvey Milk Era” will take place on Tuesday, May 22, 2012 at 7 p.m. in the Council Chambers at West Hollywood Park, 625 N. San Vicente Boulevard. The program will feature a panel discussion moderated by Tony Valenzuela, Executive Director of the Lambda Literary Foundation and will feature special guest speakers including actor/director/playwright Peter Paige and Jon Imparato, Director of Cultural Arts at the LA Gay & Lesbian Center. Film clips from The Times of Harvey Milk will be shown, as will a student film on Milk’s legacy. A dessert reception will follow the panel discussion. Please call (323) 848-6823 to RSVP for this event.

“The legacy of Harvey Milk continues to be one of perseverance and hope,” said Mayor Pro Tempore Abbe Land. “The City of West Hollywood is committed to recognizing his contributions, and we are thrilled to partner with the Friends of the West Hollywood Library to present this book about his life to our local elementary schools.”

“As our California schools work to implement the FAIR Education Act, we are happy to provide a resource to help educators include the lives of LGBT people in their lessons. It is vitally important that the youngest members of our community can learn about Harvey Milk and the many LGBT people who have worked to make the world a better place,” continued Mayor Pro Tempore Land.

In 2009, the California State Legislature passed Senate Bill 572 designating every May 22 as “Harvey Milk Day,” commemorating the birthday of Milk, the first openly gay man elected to public office in California. Milk’s story, message and legacy are globally celebrated on his birthday to give hope and inspire disenfranchised communities.

“Harvey Milk initiated an entirely new way of conceptualizing LGBT people – as political activists with a point of view,” said West Hollywood Councilmember John D’Amico. “He invented and taught us a new political language for us to use as we work to acquire our place in the American landscape.”

“Milk insisted on a categorical exclusion of absence and a full throated program of presence. And as we continue to arrive in our new subjectivity there are fewer and fewer barriers to who we are becoming as LGBT people,” continued Councilmember D’Amico.

“An assassin’s bullet ended Harvey’s short political career,” said West Hollywood Councilmember John Duran. “AIDS and breast cancer wiped out so many of our people. It is imperative that we who remain finish the tasks ahead to achieve equality and a more perfect Union,” continued Councilmember Duran.

“We are fortunate to live in a city that celebrates the legacy of Harvey Milk in all of our activities,” said West Hollywood Councilmember John Heilman. “Harvey Milk was a pioneer as one of the earliest LGBT elected officials and we are pleased to honor him,” said Councilmember Heilman.
Admission is free to all events.

Two hours of free parking will be available in the West Hollywood Park Parking Garage with validation.

For more information, please call (323) 848-6460 or visit For the deaf and hard of hearing, please call (323) 848-6496.

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