The Agenda

Chicago City Council members form first-ever LGBTQ caucus

On Wednesday, a group of Chicago aldermen, including Tom Tunney, the city’s first openly gay member of the City Council, formed the body’s first-ever LGBTQ caucus. The five out aldermen — including James Cappleman, Deb Mell, and newly-elected aldermen Carlos Ramirez-Rosa and Raymond Lopez — hope to lobby together to address the LGBTQ community’s concerns.
In an interview with DNAinfo Chicago, Tunney remembered times throughout his twelve years on the Council when other aldermen would say, “It’s a gay issue, go talk to Tunney.”
Through the LGBTQ Caucus, the five aldermen plan to work together to address a broad range of issues that disproportionately affect LGBTQ communities, including police profiling of transgender people, HIV/AIDS funding, and LGBTQ youth homelessness. The Caucus also plans to lobby for an LGBTQ-inclusive Chicago Public Schools curriculum.
“LGBTQ issues touch all communities, whether it’s bullying, access to health care, AIDS, homeless youth or transgender issues,” Lopez said. “It’s crucial that we have a forum to discuss these important issues and a mechanism to speak with a unified voice.”