Judy Shepard Chats with IMPACT
Judy Shepard took a stand at the forefront of LGBT activism after losing her son, Matthew Shepard, to a brutal hate crime in 1998 in Laramie, Wyoming. During the past 14 years, she has fought relentlessly for hate crime legislation. In October 2009, President Obama signed the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr Hate Crimes Prevention Act into law extending previous U.S. hate crime legislation to apply to crimes motivated by a victim’s actual or perceived gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability. This achievement in her crusade against hate has not stopped or slowed Mrs. Shepard’s quest. She continues to travel the country sharing her wisdom and encouraging acceptance and diversity.
During the keynote speech at the Center on Halsted‘s H.E.R. Day, Judy mentioned that people expect her to “still be at home, crying in her tea.” A few minutes with Judy and you know she’s far too strong for that; she’s a genuine leader and a remarkable example of just how important straight allies are to the LGBTQ community. She speaks candidly and casually about LGBTQ youth, parenting, and school bullying in this very special interview:
Filmed & Edited by Farrin N. Abbott
We would like to extend a very special thanks to Judy Shepard and the Matthew Shepard Foundation.