The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release
Contact: Vaishalee Raja, Communications Director,PHONE: (916) 284-9187,EMAIL:,

Oscar Winner Sean Penn Calls for Day Commemorating Harvey Milk

Penn to join Equality California, Sen. Leno to Introduce Legislation Honoring Slain Civil Rights Leader


What: Sean Penn, the Academy Award-winning star of Milk, will
join State Senator Mark Leno, State Assemblymember Tom Ammiano and
Equality California at a press conference to introduce the Harvey Milk
Day Bill. Sponsored by Equality California, the bill seeks to educate
Californians about the former San Francisco City Supervisor, civil
rights activist and American hero whose work helped bring lesbian, gay,
bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people out of the closet and into civic

The legislation calls on the Governor to proclaim May 22nd as Harvey Milk Day, designating it as a "day of special significance."

When: Tues., March 3rd at 11 a.m.
Where: Tosca Cafe, 242 Columbus Ave, San Francisco
Who: Sean Penn, Academy-Award winning star of Milk
State Senator Mark Leno (D-San Francisco)
Assemblymember Tom Ammiano (D-San Francisco)
Geoff Kors, Executive Director, Equality California

legislation was originally introduced last year by Sen. Leno but the
Governor vetoed the measure on the grounds that Harvey Milk was unknown
beyond San Francisco. Milk, who was the first openly gay
elected official of a major American city, was responsible for passing
San Francisco's gay-rights ordinance and helping to defeat the Briggs
Initiative, which would have banned gay and lesbian teachers from
public schools. Milk, along with San Francisco Mayor George Moscone,
was assassinated in November 1978, but his legacy continues. He was
named one of the most influential people of the 20th Century by Time.

Equality California is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, grassroots-based, statewide advocacy organization whose mission is to achieve equality and civil rights for all lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) Californians.