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Justin Utley Tells Utah Lawmakers a Thing or Two About Discrimination in Emotional Speech: VIDEO

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Utah native and singer-songwriter Justin Utley survived "ex-gay" therapy after coming out to his Mormon bishop, then lost his boyfriend unexpectedly of a heart attack and was fired from his job after his boss found out he was gay.

He appeared before Utah lawmakers last month, the Advocate reports:

The meeting, which was co-sponsored by Democratic Senator Jim Dabakis and Republican Senator Steve Urquhart, marked the first time some of the state’s lawmakers had ever officially met with LGBT people.

Said Utley: "There is a spoke in this wheel of diversity in this state that needs to be fixed... today, most transgender and gay Utahns are not only bringing a briefcase to work, but they're also bringing a closet. I'm here because I am still a proud Utahn born and raised with these values: compassion, optimism, that Utah is a place where every person has the same opportunity to earn a living free from discrimination."

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

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