The Lesbian and Gay Police Association-1992 to 2005
The Lesbian and Gay Police Association was founded in 1991 by four Chicago Police Officers (Mary Boyle, Dorothy Knudson, Sue Sasso, Karen Conway) who felt it was time that Lesbian and gay officers had an organization of their own. The original purpose was to support gay and lesbian police officers- who were mostly closeted at that time. Numerous lesbian and gay law enforcement organizations nationwide have come and gone but the LGPA continues to strive as a result of Kathy Dore’s diligence in preserving the organization when she became LGPA President in 1993. The LGPA is dedicated to promoting solidarity and upholding Human Rights, providing support and social interaction for its members and to promote understanding between the police and the LGBT Communities through education, communication and charitable acts.
- Founded Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Police Association in 1991 which is the first LGBT police organization of its type in Illinois
- Sought and won the right to wear the CPD uniform in the LGBT Pride Parade
- Fought their way onto the police bulletin and earned the right to post LGBT related police notices
- Provided honorary memberships to people who made significant contributions to the police and gay communities
- Worked and won the right to include sworn gay and lesbian officers in the Sensitivity and Recruit Training at the Academy
- Fought against inter-departmental discrimination towards LGBT officers
- Earned the support of the FOP Lodge for their sponsorship of the LGBT Pride Parade Float
- The LGPA has had members take part in the hearings to grant Domestic Partner Benefits when the issue came before the Chicago City Council, backed the fight
- Backed the fight for bereavement leave for Domestic Partners within the Chicago Police Department
- Worked with the FOP lodge 7 and the city’s lawyers to include Sexual Orientation in a CPD contract non discrimination clause
- Supported the effort for Chicago hosting the 2006 Gay Games
The Gay Officers Action League (GOAL) Illinois was brought to Illinois and formed in the very early spring of 1995 to current by Mary Boyle with the assistance of Diane Martino, Lori Cooper, Kathy Battaglia, Bill Dineen, Rob Hadley and Mike Cherry founded GOAL-Illinois in very early spring of 1995 who founded it in order to have access to LEGAL-International, do more in terms of service to and for the GLBT community, to bring on more diversity and support officers from other departments. In 1995- LEGAL-International was formed so GLBT police groups around the world could support each other- the older established groups supporting the new groups and to exchange good police practice between us all. The first actual “float” in the GLBT Parade was the GOAL-Illinois float in 1995 – before that the LGPA marched behind the Superintendent’s car hosted by the Gay and Lesbian Police Advisory Committee people. GOAL-Illinois disbanded when LEGAL-International allowed people to join as individuals rather than restricting it only to police groups. However, GOAL Illinois still has an active e-mail GOALIL95@aol.com
The Gay Officers Action League – New York (GOAL) was formed in 1982 – current in order to… to address the needs, issues, and concerns of gay and lesbian public safety officers. Since its inception, GOAL has advocated for the rights of its members and has assisted them on matters of discrimination, harassment, and disparate treatment in the workplace. GOAL provides an arena where members can feel free to discuss their needs and concerns in a comfortable atmosphere, without fear of job related reprisals. It provides a safe environment for a group of people who have been, and continue to be, victims of harassment and discrimination in the workplace. GOAL also serves as a bridge between the public safety community and The LGBT Community at large. GOAL is the first organization of its type in the world. One of its objectives is to promote the establishment of other chapters, throughout the United States and around the world. By striving for a high level of diversity and the inclusion of all people within the organization, GOAL stimulates the intellectual growth and self-awareness of its membership. In doing so it aims to motivate its members to achieve a higher degree of efficiency in the discharge of their duties as public safety officers. While the Gay Officers Action League is a positive force within the gay and lesbian community, it is also instrumental in attempting to change homophobic attitudes in the workplace and in the community at large. In addition to GOAL’s and LGPA’s missions in general.
The original LGPA fore-leaders decided to step down in 2005 and asked us to continue the passage of future endeavors for the association. Spring 2005, Jamie Richardson, Jim LoBianco, Levi Catavu, Kathy Caldwell, Joe Beosi, Jose Rios, Jonathon Lewin, Marty Ridge, Barry Hagar, Kathy Crow, Renee Contreras, Judy Jenkins, Ken Schaffer, and Nancy Lipman decided to expand our membership, by merging with the Gay Officers Action League AKA GOAL. Thus, opening our association to firefighters, public safety officers and associate members. This has benefited our association by improving infrastructure, expanded support and companionship with outside agencies, subsequently renaming our organization LGPA-GOAL Chicago.