Responses of Harold Brazil to GLAA 2000 Questionnaire
for DC Council Candidates
1. Will you vote for a budget for the new Citizen Complaint Review Board and the Office of Citizen Complaint Review large enough to prevent the development of a case backlog?
Yes. And, I added $100,000 to the CCRB's Fiscal Year 2001 budget - $100,000 above the Mayor's proposed budget for the CCRB. The CCRB is an important vehicle for justice. The existence of the CCRB will also serve as a deterrent to misconduct by some police officers; the knowledge that misconduct may be reviewed by the CCRB may make some officers think twice before engaging in inappropriate behavior.
2. Will you support legislation that will reverse the Council's recent enactment of a ban on moonlighting by members of the Metropolitan Police Department at bars and sexually oriented establishments?
Yes. If an officer moonlights at an establishment, then in effect police protection is provided at no cost to the taxpayer.
3. Will you support amending recently enacted Sexual Offenders Registration Act, "Megan's Law," so that those who can prove to the court that they no longer constitute a danger to the community will not be required to register as a sex offender?
No. I worked closely with GLAA and the gay and lesbian community to ensure that the bill did not infringe on their rights. I kept my promise to remove language that would have had an adverse impact on the gay and lesbian community. I even added language to prevent Park Police stings against gays at the "P Street Beach" area.
The Sex Offender Registration law is carefully designed to protect our communities from sexual predators. The final bill that was passed is moderate, protects the rights of gays and lesbians and also protects women and children from sexual predators.
4. Will you support the full funding and full staffing of the Metropolitan Police Department's newly created Gay and Lesbian Liaison Unit (GLLU) as currently proposed?
Yes. The GLLU should be provided with all the resources it needs to do its job.
5. Will you demand mandatory gay male, lesbian, bisexual and transgender sensitivity and diversity training including gay and transgender community representative as a continuing part of the training for all members of the Metropolitan Police Department and the Fire/EMS Department?
Yes. I have strongly advocated for thorough sensitivity training for police department employees, both civilian and sworn, as well as for firefighters and EMS personnel. Discrimination against a person based on sexual preference should not be tolerated.
PUBLIC HEALTH & HIV
6. Last year, a unique identifier system for tracking the spread of HIV was approved by the Council and Mayor, rather than a names reporting system that would deter some people from being tested in the first place. Will you insist that unique identifier system be implemented without delay and fairly evaluated?
Yes. Testing and treatment are important for preventing the spread of HIV. A guarantee that one's privacy will be protected is critical to getting people to seek treatment and testing.
7. Will you oppose Bill 13-240 which would make possession and distribution of marijuana for medical purposes a felony?
Bill 13-240 does not make possession of marijuana for medical purposes a felony. Bill 13-240 would make distribution or possession with intent to distribute a large quantity of marijuana a felony, i.e. over 1/2 pound.
Violence and gangs are associated with marijuana trafficking. Residents in some neighborhoods tell me that they want stronger marijuana laws because marijuana dealers make their neighborhoods unsafe. The District of Columbia is the only jurisdiction in the United States that does not make marijuana trafficking a felony. Bill 13-240 will correct that.
I sheparded a bill I introduced through Committee that will allow the use of dronabinol in order to help people with AIDS. I was proud to work with GLAA on this issue.
8. Will you support the use of District taxpayer funds to implement a needle exchange program?
9. The Administration for HIV/AIDS (AHA) is still unable to account for its spending. Will you ask the Inspector General to audit AHA contracting.
10. Will you support earmarking funds to combat mental health problems and homelessness among sexual minority youth?
Yes and I will support funding for programs to combat mental health problems and homelessness for all people who face such problems.
11. Will you support a temporary increase in the annual budget for the Office of Human Rights (OHR) over the next several years until its persistent 700-case backlog has been eliminated?
Yes. I support providing the resources necessary to eliminate the case backlog.
12. Will you support legislation that will codify OHR's former practice of giving top priority to discrimination complaints filed by people with AIDS or other major life- threatening diseases?
Yes. People with AIDS or other serious life-threatening illnesses should not have to wait long for OHR decisions. It is appropriate to give priority to such cases.
13. DC's rate of HIV infections among teenagers is significantly higher than the national average. Will you support legislation to increase HIV prevention efforts targeted towards sexual minority youth?
DEFENDING OUR FAMILIES
14. Will you support legal recognition of marriages between partners of the same sex?
I support civil unions. I am willing to engage in discussion regarding legal marriage for same sex couples.
15. Will you agree that the District should recognize the same-sex civil unions established in Vermont or other jurisdictions?
16. Will you support legislation in the District similar to Vermont's civil unions law?
17. Will you support the well-established decision by D.C. Courts, which recognize the right of unmarried couples to adopt children jointly?
YOUTH AND PUBLIC EDUCATION
18. Will you support legislation prohibiting harassment of students in the District schools (both public and charter) on the basis of any of the protected categories enumerated in the D.C. Human Rights Law?
Yes. Schools must provide nurturing environments for our children.