June 15, 2016 - Issue: Vol. 162, No. 95 — Daily Edition114th Congress (2015 - 2016) - 2nd Session
IN HONOR OF THE LATE SERGEANT CHARLES H. COCHRANE; Congressional Record Vol. 162, No. 95
(Extensions of Remarks - June 15, 2016)
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[Extensions of Remarks] [Pages E921-E922] From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov] IN HONOR OF THE LATE SERGEANT CHARLES H. COCHRANE ______ HON. JERROLD NADLER of new york in the house of representatives Wednesday, June 15, 2016 Mr. NADLER. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to honor the late NYPD Sergeant Charles H. Cochrane, whose contributions to New York City's civic life are being recognized by the renaming of the intersection of West 11th Street and Washington Street as Sgt. Charles H. Cochrane Way. On November 20, 1981, Sgt. Charles H. Cochrane became the first openly gay officer in the history of the New York City Police Department when he testified before a City Council committee considering a proposal to ban discrimination against homosexuals. Sgt. Cochrane spoke out in favor of the bill, saying ``I am very proud of being a New York City policeman. And I'm equally proud of being gay.'' At the time, Sgt. Cochrane was a fourteen year veteran of the NYPD. His declaration before the City Council committee was a brave [[Page E922]] statement and a strong condemnation of ignorance and bigotry faced by the LGBT community. Sgt. Cochrane's bravery, passion and drive for the just treatment of LGBT individuals, and specifically of his fellow LGBT law enforcement officials, motivated him to found The Gay Officers Action League (GOAL), an organization dedicated to advocating for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender law enforcement officers. Today, there are GOAL chapters in every major police department in the United States. Sergeant Cochrane passed away in 2008, but his legacy lives on in the community that he fought for and is epitomized by this street renaming in his honor. Mr. Speaker, I am proud to represent the district where Sgt. Cochrane lived and worked and where he paved the way for countless other individuals and organizations to promote justice and equality within the law enforcement community. On this occasion, I reflect on the recent tragedy in Orlando and remind my colleagues that we have much work ahead of us to achieve an end to hate, bigotry and violence against the LGBT community, despite the strides that we have made as a society due to heroes like Sgt. Cochrane. As Sgt. Cochrane did, we must all stand up for tolerance and equality. I congratulate GOAL on this significant milestone and would like to thank the NYPD officers who spearheaded this initiative. ____________________