Turn your political anxiety into participation with these advocacy groups

FILE - In this Wednesday, Sept. 24, 2008 file photo, real estate developer Donald Trump, right, talks with The Associated Press as his son, Donald Jr., gives an interview, during festivities for his 92-story Trump International Hotel and Tower in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

This month's election results shocked many around the country and the world. As the country prepares for four years with a president whose campaign included powerful, inflammatory rhetoric, many are anxious about the future and feeling the need to take action. The Weekly has compiled a starter-list of donation- and volunteer-driven organizations whose duties range from assisting hate-crime victims to ensuring the civil liberties and First Amendment protections of all Americans aren’t endangered.

Gender Justice Nevada President-Elect Donald Trump says gay marriage is here to stay, but transgender rights haven’t been established nationally and could be at risk. As the former governor of Indiana, Vice President-elect Mike Pence signed the Religious Freedom Restoration Act in 2015 that, before its revision, allowed businesses the right to deny service to LGBT individuals based on religious beliefs. Trump and Pence both support the First Amendment Defense Act (FADA), a large-scale version of the Religious Freedom law that many argue would allow businesses, corporations and employers to deny service to LGBT individuals. This law could especially affect trans people and their ability to receive the health care they need, making Gender Justice Nevada’s work even more crucial. GJN is a statewide advocacy and anti-violence organization that addresses issues faced by sex- and gender-diverse communities including trans, intersex, lesbian and gay people. Through donations, GJNV provides therapy and counseling services, legal assistance, advocacy and outreach training, educational services, a 24-hour hotline and more.

Council on Islamic-American Relations Trump’s pick for national security advisor, retired Army Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, once called Islam a cancer—and Trump has considered starting a registry for Muslims. In the months and years that follow, CAIR will work to protect civil liberties, encourage dialogue between faith communities, foster an understanding of Islam and build coalitions that promote justice.

NAACP Las Vegas In the wake of Trump’s victory, racist and religious hate crimes are on the rise, according to reports. The NAACP is the nation’s oldest civil rights organization, which works to eliminate racial prejudice and ensure the political, educational, social and economic equality of minority groups. The local branch provides scholarships and job and education resources, and has a youth council to nurture leadership skills in students.

American Civil Liberties Union With hate crimes on the rise and the likelihood that FADA will become federal law, the ACLU’s important work will be even more vital to Americans. The ACLU aims to preserve and defend individual rights and liberties granted by the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Joining or donating to the Nevada ACLU affiliate could help the organization continue its fight for racial justice, free speech, the rights of immigrants, women and LGBT citizens and more.

Immigrant Justice Initiative President-elect Trump has stated he wants to deport up to 3 million undocumented immigrants. This Las Vegas-based collective of immigrants, attorneys and activists provides educational workshops and advocacy, and may help with guidance and resources regarding legal counsel.

The Rape Crisis Center Trump’s comments about sexual assault have been distressing to women all over the country, contributing to concern that a more complacent attitude toward sexual assault and a more hostile environment for survivors could be developing. This Las Vegas-based center assists victims and survivors of sexual abuse and assault, supports families going through the court system, offers counseling, education programs and more. The center accepts donations and volunteer applications year-round.

The National Organization for Women and Planned Parenthood “I’m pro-life. The judges will be pro-life,” Trump said of his planned Supreme Court plans during a post-election interview with 60 Minutes, further leading some to believe a conservative-leaning SCOTUS could possibly overturn Roe vs. Wade. And while Trump may keep some Obamacare provisions, many women are worried about losing access to affordable or no-cost contraception. The Nevada chapter of NOW strives to maintain women’s rights and achieve equality through lobbying, education and protest—and Planned Parenthood provides reproductive health services like cancer and STD screenings as well as birth control.,

Showing Up for Racial Justice As more hate crimes are reported around the country, it is increasingly important that white people take a stand against racism. SURJ is a national network (with a Las Vegas affiliate) that encourages white citizens to organize and fight for racial justice and take a public stand against the sort of intolerance that once allowed groups like the Ku Klux Klan to thrive.

League of United Latin American Citizens The LULAC is the largest and oldest Latino organization in the U.S. and is focused on advancing the economic and educational conditions of Latinos and Latinas as well as their civil rights, political involvement, health and more. Member involvement includes community service projects, sponsoring voter registration drives, citizenship education programs and more.

Unite Here The Las Vegas Culinary Union is an affiliate of Unite Here, a labor union that represents 270,000 people across the U.S. and Canada. The Las Vegas Culinary Union plays a huge role within the Latino community and most recently called for a nationwide boycott of all Donald Trump products and the Trump Hotel in Las Vegas. While the president-elect refuses to negotiate a new contract with the hotel’s employees, Unite Here is organizing boycott campaigns to continue the fight for better wages, working conditions, health insurance and more.

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Leslie Ventura is a staff writer at Las Vegas Weekly and Industry Weekly. She’s picked the brains of rock stars ...

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