NCLR is a national legal organization that advances the civil and human rights of LGBT people and families.
We started as pioneers. And we still are.
In 1977, a brave and determined woman—fresh out of law school and eager to make a difference—decided to put her knowledge to good use. As a legal scholar, Donna Hitchens saw the courtroom as a way to change the world. As a lesbian, she had experienced frustrations and fears—both personal and professional—and didn’t want others to suffer the same. And as a future parent, she knew she would face even more challenges ahead.
On this foundation, the National Center for Lesbian Rights was born.
That was over three decades ago. Today, that pioneering spirit and unwavering commitment to advance the civil and human rights of LGBT people continues. Each year, through litigation, public policy advocacy, and public education, NCLR helps more than 5,000 LGBT people and their families nationwide. And our precedent-setting case victories literally re-write the law, changing the legal landscape for all LGBT people and families across the nation. For three decades we’ve led historic cases, and today we are still trailblazing in pursuit of justice, fairness, and legal protections for all LGBT people.
Making change means changing everything.
From a humble yet tenacious initial focus on addressing the overlooked discrimination against lesbians, NCLR has grown to expand its life—and law—changing work in order to advance the legal landscape for every LGBT person. No stone will go unturned in pursuit of our goal of achieving full and equal access to civil and human rights for all. Our programs focusing on employment, immigration, youth, elder law, transgender law, sports, marriage, relationship protections, reproductive rights, and family law create safer homes, safer jobs, and a more just world.
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