The Matthew Shepard Foundation continues to ensure that the name of Matthew Wayne Shepard – a student at the University of Wyoming – is remembered.
Shepard’s murder – for which two men are serving life, one without the chance of parole – brought the subject of hate crime to national and international attention, and led to legislation at both state and federal levels in the USA.
The Laramie Project is an award-winning play (on which a film was subsequently based) depicting his life and death, and among the venues it’s due to be seen are Napa Opera House in Napa Valley, CA, and the Woman’s Club in Minneapolis, both on 19 October.
The website says:
In observance of the ten years since the murder of University of Wyoming student Matthew Shepard, the Matthew Shepard Foundation launched an aggressive anti-hate campaign aimed at creating a movement of people working to lessen the impact of hate in society. Realizing the importance of this 10th year observance, Judy Shepard [Matthew’s mother], Executive Director of the Matthew Shepard Foundation, launched the “Campaign to Erase Hate” by asking the crowd of more than 500 people to raise themselves to the power of ten and join with her in helping the Foundation fulfill its mission of erasing hate.
The overall goal of this new campaign is to equip individuals with the necessary tools to discuss and address hate in our society. These tools include personal webpages, resources on dealing with hateful speech and actions, monthly correspondence and most importantly, a way to invite ten others to join.