Telling Sakia Gunn's Story
By: CHRISTOPHER MURRAY
Source: Gay City News
Director and producer Charles Brack is in the final, frenzied stages of completing a feature-length documentary about the 2003 bias crime murder of 15-year-old Newark resident Sakia Gunn. Media coverage of Gunn's murder was paltry compared with that of Matthew Shepherd -- though Gay City News was a notable exception -- raising questions about the way race and gender play out in discussions about bias crimes against queer people.
Brack, 48, who is called Chas by his friends, grew up in Chicago and has youthful memories of the disorder during the 1968 Democratic National Convention there. The June day he left Ohio's Antioch College in 1983 with a degree in communications, he drove through the night to arrive in New York for the Gay Pride celebration.
Brack worked for the New York City Commission on Human Rights in its Lesbian and Gay Discrimination Unit and later the AIDS Discrimination Unit as a human rights investigator, eventually becoming an associate producer in the Education Department.
In 1992, he joined Gay Men's Health Crisis where he was the co-coordinator of the Media Unit and associate producer of the "Living with AIDS" cable news magazine program. In 1996, he returned to the Commission on Human Rights, in its Community Relations Bureau, where he worked closely with the police on bias cases.
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