May 21, 2017

WASHINGTON, DC—PFLAG National—the nation's largest organization uniting families, allies, and people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ)—announced today they would continue their partnership with Major League Baseball by working with Toronto Blue Jays center fielder Kevin Pillar through their ally engagement program, Straight for EqualityTM.

After being suspended for two games for using an anti-LGBTQ epithet against Atlanta Braves pitcher Jason Motte, MLB’s Vice President Billy Bean announced that Pillar would engage with PFLAG. Bean shared with USA Today his hope that Pillar will, “...feel like he understands better after everything, and have in the back of his mind how much words matter moving forward as he plays in front of millions of people. It can help him become a role model.”

PFLAG National Director of Learning and Inclusion--and Straight for Equality leader--Jean-Marie Navetta says she sees this as a learning opportunity, with great potential for change not only for Pillar, but for those watching the scenario play out.

Said Navetta, “Everyone makes mistakes, and unfortunately, some can result in people getting hurt. This is a great opportunity to turn a mistake into a learning experience, and to demonstrate that it's the actions we take after our mistakes and we make our apologies that count. That is when we need to walk our talk, and make sure that not only our words but also our actions are inclusive, fair, and respectful.”

Now in its 10th year, Straight for Equality applies PFLAG’s more than four decades of experience working with families and friends to allies in the workplace, faith communities, healthcare, sports, entertainment, and more. To learn more about Straight for Equality, visit

PFLAG is the nation’s largest organization uniting families, allies, and people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer. PFLAG is committed to advancing equality through its mission of support, education, and advocacy, and has more than 400 chapters and 200,000 supporters crossing multiple generations of American families in major urban centers, small cities, and rural areas in all 50 states and Puerto Rico. To learn more, visit


Liz Owen, Director of Communications
(202) 467-8180 x214