Tuesday, September 30, 2014

GLAD Happy Hour Event

Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders are having their next GLAD Hour, a happy hour event for fans of equal justice for all this Wednesday October 1st from 6P to 8:30P at Club Café in Boston. This is an opportunity to mix & mingle with fellow supporters of LGBT equality including members of the Mass LGBT Bar Association. Janson Wu, GLAD Deputy Director & Senior Attorney, will be speaking about GLAD's vision of going beyond equality & making equal justice a lived reality for all. Recently GLAD filed suit against the Social Security Administration (SSA) in U.S. District Court for the District of Rhode Island, charging SSA with wrongfully denying survivor benefits to 56-year-old Deborah Tevyaw after the death of her wife, Patricia Baker. Janson Wu, GLAD Senior Staff Attorney stated, “More than a year after the demise of the Defense of Marriage Act, Social Security’s misguided & mistaken application of the law is causing serious harm & distress to people like Deb.” Wu will be talking about this other cases GLAD is currently working on. There will be complimentary hors d'oeuvres & a cash bar. Club Café is located at 209 Columbus Avenue Boston in Boston. MA. The GLAD Hour Series is sponsored by Reproductive Science Center. While there is no fee to attend this event, RSVPs are greatly appreciated.
For More Info & RSVP: glad.org
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Sunday, September 28, 2014

Global LGBT Rights Move Forward

The United Nations Human Rights Council, the UN's top human rights watchdog, has approved a resolution condemning & expressing "grave concern" about discrimination based on sexual orientation & gender identity. Brazil, Chile, Colombia & Uruguay were the countries that took leading roles in pushing for the resolution's passage. Jessica Stern, Executive Director of The International Gay & Lesbian Human Rights Commission stated, "The Human Rights Council has taken a fundamental step forward by reaffirming one of the United Nations' key principles--that everyone is equal in dignity & rights. This resolution puts the UN on a trajectory to address the discrimination & violence LGBT persons suffer daily across the world. The council is confirming that LGBT people have universal human rights. We know, of course, that the struggle is long, & that we will need the Council to focus on the violations we suffer for many years to come. But for now, we celebrate that the majority of States stood with us to declare, unequivocally, that human rights are for everyone, everywhere." The resolution passed on a vote of 25 to 14 with 7 abstentions. The votes largely broke down along geographic & religious lines, with most South American, European & North American nations voting in favor & most African & Middle Eastern countries, including homophobic U.S. allies like Pakistan & Saudi Arabia voting against.
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Friday, September 26, 2014

LGBT History Maker Awards

The History Project is celebrating Boston & Massachusetts’ LGBT history with its premier fundraising event presenting 2 awards to community members that make history every day on October 2nd. This year the History Maker Award will be presented to State Representative Byron Rushing a longtime ally to the LGBT communities of Massachusetts. The History Maker Award is presented to an individual whose lifetime achievements have had a significant & positive effect on Boston's LGBT communities. During his 32 years in the Massachusetts House of Representatives, The Hon. Byron Rushing has been a fierce leader & ally to Massachusetts’ LGBT communities & diverse residents. From sponsoring the gay rights bill in the 1980s & the law to end discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation in public schools in the 1990s, to his leadership during the constitutional convention to maintain marriage equality in Massachusetts, he has demonstrated a clear & powerful commitment to equality & to human & civil rights. The Lavender Rhino Award is presented to an emerging activist or organization whose impact on the local LGBT communities well deserves recognition. This year this award goes to Omar Thomas, Assistant Professor of Harmony at Berklee College of Music & award-winning composer of most recently “We Will Know: An LGBT Civil Rights Piece in Four Movements”. Robert B. Dimmick will emcee the event. The History Maker Awards take place on Thursday October 2nd from 6P to 9P at Club Cafe 209 Columbus Avenue in Boston, MA. Tickets are $75.
For Info & Tix: historyproject.org

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Thursday, September 25, 2014

GLAD Sues Walmart

Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders (GLAD), have filed a charge of discrimination against Walmart with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) on behalf of Jacqueline Cote. Cote, a Walmart employee who was denied spousal health insurance for her wife, Diana Smithson, currently battling ovarian cancer. That refusal GLAD alleges violates both state & federal law prohibiting sex discrimination in employment. Cote works as an associate in the Swansea, MA Walmart store. Starting in 2006 & continuing through 2012 she attempted to add Smithson to her insurance during Walmart’s open enrollment periods, trying to access a benefit available to other Walmart employees. Cote was particularly concerned about health insurance because of her wife’s health history, Smithson had had a bout with breast cancer in 1995. Cote stated, “I felt like a second-class employee. I had to keep trying; I wouldn’t give up.” But when Cote entered her spouse’s gender as “female,” the online system would stop her from proceeding further. When she called Walmart’s home office to investigate further, she was told that Walmart did not offer health insurance coverage to same-gender spouses. Janson Wu, senior staff attorney at GLAD stated, “All that Jackie wanted was to be treated like all other Walmart employees & to take care of her spouse. Instead, Walmart chose to discriminate against its gay & lesbian employees.” By the time Walmart ultimately announced that it would change its policy in 2013, which went into effect on January 1, 2014, Cote & Smithson had racked up medical bills topping $100,000 & have been hounded by bill collectors. Cote & Smithson have been together for nearly 23 years & were married in May 2004 as soon as it was legally possible.
For More Info: glad.org
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LGBT Rosh Hashanah

This is the first full day of Rosh Hashanah the Jewish New Year that began at sundown last night. The year 5775 marks the celebration of the creation of the world & the human being. Rosh Hashanah begins a 10-day period of introspection & contemplation culminating in Yom Kippur the Day of Atonement. Rosh Hashanah is marked with a special rituals. Prior to the arrival of the day it is customary to send new years greetings to friends, to buy new clothing & to examine ones behavior. On Rosh Hashanah eve you eat apples dipped in honey signifying a sweet year. At Rosh Hashanah services the day is marked with a special liturgy in which we pray for the whole world. A highlight of the Rosh Hashanah service is the sounding of the Shofar a ram's horn which is meant to shock the listener into self-examination. Now there’s a LGBT inclusive prayer book for Rosh Hashanah & Yom Kippur. The contemporary text for Conservative congregations acknowledges LGBT relationships by making references to "partners", faltering faith, depression, loneliness & financial difficulties has been hailed as "an extraordinary event" by the Rabbinical Assembly the New York-based organization of Conservative rabbis that is behind its creation. Rabbi Jacob Luski of Congregation B'nai Israel states that the new prayer book brings a sensitivity to "issues of the 21st century" with its gender-neutral language & practical approach. "Yom Kippur is a fast day, yet some of us have medical issues. There is a prayer for those unable to fast. There is a prayer for caregivers. It's a sensitivity we've always had, but here there is a prayer just for that. There is a prayer for remembering a hurtful parent during the Yizkor, or memorial service, on Yom Kippur.” This is a great step forward in our quest for LGBT Equality. 
L'shanah tovah ("for a good year") to all Our LGBT Jewish Families!
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Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Guitarist Sharon Isbin To Perform

Multiple Grammy Award winner Sharon Isbin who has been hailed as “the pre-eminent guitarist of our time” will be perform at Shalin Liu Performance Center in Rockport, Massachusetts on Sunday September 28th at 7P. As one of the most acclaimed classical guitarists in the world, Sharon Isbin has made an enormous musical impact. Isbin has forged a dazzling career over the last 30 years, releasing more than 25 recordings, winning 3 Grammy Awards & covering a wide range of styles, genres & composers. She’s played with more than 170 orchestras over the world, has commissioned more concerti than any guitarist in the modern era & has won numerous awards & accolades, including being the first guitarist to win the renowned Munich Competition. Isbin’s music has ranged from Baroque to Spanish/Latin to crossover jazz to contemporary new music. Sharon will also be presenting her hour documentary “Sharon Isbin: Troubadour” produced by Susan Dangel, that includes guest appearances from a wide array of luminaries including Michelle Obama, Joan Baez, Martina Navratilova & more. Sharon who’s been out since she was 18 has been featured in many gay & straight publications, as well as a guest appearance on Showtime's L Word playing herself alongside Jennifer Beals & Pam Grier. There will be an Artist Meet & Greet Reception with Sharon following the concert.
For Info & Tix: rockportmusic.org
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Tuesday, September 23, 2014

GLAD & Gay Straight Alliances

Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders have launched a campaign to encourage the creation of more gay-straight alliances (GSAs) in middle schools across Massachusetts & in New England. Vickie Henry, Director of GLAD’s Youth Initiative stated, “Young people are coming out at a younger & younger age. It’s critical to have resources in place to support them & to educate their peers, so they can go through coming out safely & in a positive way.” LGBT middle school students are significantly more likely than their high school peers to experience verbal & physical harassment and assault, with 35.5% of middle school students reporting regular physical harassment compared to 21.4% of high school students. Yet while 52.6% of LGBT high school youth have access to a GSA, only 6.3% of LGBT middle school youth do. GLAD has partnered with Boston Alliance of LGBTQ Youth (BAGLY, Inc.), GLSEN Massachusetts, Greater Boston PFLAG, Hispanic Black Gay Coalition, the Massachusetts Commission on LGBTQ Youth & True Colors: Out Youth Theater & the Theater Offensive to create the campaign. Throughout the school year, GLAD will be making available online content that educates & encourages the creation of middle school GSAs. GLAD will also provide assistance to any students who are having difficulty forming a GSA due to their school administration’s resistance or who believe their school is not treating an existing GSA the same as any other club.
For More Info: glad.org
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Saturday, September 20, 2014

Joan Rivers Documentary on PBS

Since the passing of fierce gay ally Joan Rivers our LGBT community has really lost a hero. Frank Marino star of “Divas Las Vegas” built his entire career impersonating Rivers making him the longest running headliner in Las Vegas. Marino stated, “Whether she knew it or not, she was not only a good friend but also like a second mother to me... This is a lady that not only inspired my career with her amazing talent but was also the one to introduce me to the producers of my first show which kicked off my 30 year career of impersonating her. I can’t imagine what my world is going to be like without having Joan in it every day. If in any small way I can keep her legacy alive in Las Vegas for years to come, it’ll truly be my honor.” This week the E Television Network ran a day long tribute to Rivers with a “Fashion Police” marathon that made you laugh so hard as she roasted celebrities as only Rivers could, you truly felt she was still alive. On Tuesday September 23rd at 10:30P PBS American Masters will present an In Memoriam tribute broadcast of Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work (2010) directed by Ricki Stern & Annie Sundberg. If you haven’t seen this brilliant moving film, this is your chance to really see what made Joan Rivers the legend she will always be. After the broadcast, the film will be available on the American Masters website for a limited time.
For More Info: pbs.org
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Friday, September 19, 2014

LadyFest Miami September 19 & 20

The first LadyFest Miami is happening in Wynwood Arts District on Friday September 19th at LightBox & Saturday September 20th at The LAB Miami & Wynwood Cafe. The organizing members of LadyFest Miami are a collective of a diverse group of local activists, artists & organizers residing in South Florida. LadyFest Miami is a DIY (do it yourself), volunteer organized, led & run festival made by & for women --including women of color; women who identify as LGB, queer, transgender, mothers, childfree women, women in the faith community, women who are immigrants, women of all ages & their allies. The objective is to build a sustainable community & celebrate diversity through critical dialogue, cultural performance & artistic expression within the context of a women-centered space. Coming from different cultural backgrounds, gender identities, sexual orientations & social justice backgrounds, they all share a passion for a dedication to fostering transformative dialogue within our local community. The weekend is a grassroots initiative that will consist of interactive workshops & discussions, live music, art & performances. There will also be local vendors, a free swap market, health services & more. LadyFest Miami is born of the need for community-led educational engagements that are inclusive of & focused on all women. A space where women can celebrate in community, showcase local groups, initiatives, artists, healers, performers, musicians & call for activism, engagement & intersectional work.
For More Info: ladyfestmiami.com
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Thursday, September 18, 2014

Sarah Vaughan Revisited

Jazz & cabaret diva Ann Hampton Callaway will be performing her fabulous new tribute album “From Sassy to Divine: The Sarah Vaughan Project” at Scullers Jazz Club in Boston on Friday September 19th for 2 shows at 8P & 10P. The album has received rave reviews & debuted in the top 20 on Amazon Jazz & at 11 on I-Tunes Jazz. Ann Hampton Callaway, the multi-platinum selling & Tony nominated singer/songwriter’s loving tribute to the great Sarah Vaughan channels the spirit of The Divine One as no other living vocalist can. Ann stated, “I am excited to return to one of my favorite jazz clubs, Sculler's this week, to make my first concert appearance after the release of my new CD ‘From Sassy To Divine: The Sarah Vaughan Project”. Boston jazz lovers show the love & know the music. I will have Ted Rosenthal at the piano, Dave Zinno on bass & Yoron Israel on drums as we celebrate the extraordinary life & music of the great Sarah Vaughan. The response to this show has been stirring- my recent appearance at the Vail Jazz Festival confirmed that my takes on these songs, co-arranged with one of Sarah's brilliant pianists, Bill Mays, has resonance beyond nostalgia. We aimed for equal measures of delight & emotional heft in the portrait that unfolds through story & song. I will be doing a Sarah Vaughanesque improv that my audience will be invited to contribute words & phrases for that should add some fun to the night. And if any great Boston singers or instrumentalists are in the house, they just might be pulled into the sassy fun.” Tickets are $40 for the show & $80 for dinner & the show.
For More Info & Tickets...
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Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Mary Bonauto Gets Genius Grant

The MacArthur Foundation announced that Mary L. Bonauto, Civil Rights Project Director for Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders (GLAD), has been awarded a 2014 MacArthur Fellowship, sometimes referred to as a “genius grant.” Bonauto is one of the architects of marriage equality in this country. She successfully argued & won the Goodridge v. Department of Public Health case in 2003. The Fellowships are awarded annually to “talented individuals who have shown extraordinary originality & dedication in their creative pursuits & a marked capacity for self-direction.” Bonauto stated, “This award is a testament to the justice-seeking work of innumerable people all across the nation. I deeply appreciate the Foundation’s vote of confidence in our movement’s work as we strive to remove barriers to LGBT people’s full participation in society. So many have given so much to bring us to this point – whether our courageous plaintiffs or people whose names history may never know & every bit of it has mattered. This honor is an investment in a better future for all.” Gary Buseck, GLAD’s Interim Executive Director & Longtime Legal Director added, “We are thrilled for Mary & for the LGBT movement. Mary is without a doubt one of the most visionary & hardworking people in our movement & at the same time one of the most genuinely modest. Not only is this award well-deserved recognition for Mary, but it’s an opportunity for us to highlight the movement for LGBT equality & all that remains to be done.” Congrats Mary!!
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Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Laverne Cox At Liaison Nightclub

Liaison Nightclub the new game-changing LGBT nightlife venue created by Victor Drai & set on the Las Vegas Strip at Bally’s, will celebrate its Grand Opening on Saturday, Sept. 20th with Emmy-nominated actress Laverne Cox from the hit television series “Orange Is The New Black.” Michael Ryan, General Manager of Liaison stated, “Having Laverne Cox join us for this monumental night is legendary. Like Laverne, we are blazing a new path for the LGBT community & it’s exciting to welcome her to Las Vegas as we celebrate our grand opening.” In addition to Laverne Cox, the grand opening party will feature surprise guests & special performances & will celebrate the glitz & glamour of old Hollywood. The 7,000 square foot nightclub features sexy dark finishes of gold & black & the opulent design features an abundance of mirrors & Venetian-style chandeliers. Intimate, yet large enough to provide the social experience that is a signature of Drai’s venues, Liaison offers two club rooms, two DJ’s, multiple bars, stage & plenty of space for surprise performances. Doors open at 10P & Liaison Nightclub is taking reservations. Cox was honored with GLAAD’s Stephen F. Kolzak Award in LA in April. I talked to Laverne on the Red Carpet at the NYC GLAAD Media Awards about how she was dealing with her fabulous career in this exclusive audio byte:
 
For More Info: liaisonlasvegas.com
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Monday, September 15, 2014

GLAAD Game Changers Gala

GLAAD honored Google, YouTube, Golden State Warriors President & COO Rick Welts & Prop 8 plaintiffs Kris Perry & Sandy Stier at GLAAD Gala San Francisco: Game Changers at the Hilton San Francisco Union Square. Google, YouTube received the inaugural Ric Weiland Award presented by YouTube stars Tyler Oakley & Hannah Hart to Arjan Dijk Vice President Marketing at Google. Rick Welts, President & COO of the Golden State Warriors received GLAAD's Davidson/Valentini Award for his work to promote LGBT inclusion in professional team sports presented by Golden State Warriors Assistant Coach Jarron Collins, twin brother of Jason Collins, the NBA's first openly gay active player. GLAAD also recognized Kris Perry & Sandy Stier, lead plaintiffs in Hollingsworth v. Perry the landmark case that struck down California’s Proposition 8, with the Presidential Local Hero Award at the event. Peter Paige, the executive producer of The Fosters, presented the award to Perry & Stier. Perry Stated, "Almost five years ago we prepared for the first & hopefully last trial we will ever be a part of! That trial changed our lives forever; a trial where I shared my experience of growing up gay in California's conservative Central valley & how harmful feeling less than was to me." In this exclusive audio interview I chatted with Kris Perry & Sandy Stier who talked about their experience being filmed for HBO’s documentary THE CASE AGAINST 8 leading up to the Supreme Court decision that found Prop 8 unconstitutional & about what affect the experience had on their family.
   
For More Info: glaad.org
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Saturday, September 13, 2014

Chicago LGBT Film Festival

Celebrating 32 years The Chicago LGBT International Film Festival, Reeling Film Festival begins on Thursday, September 18th at The Music Box Theatre, 3733 N. Southport Avenue with a screening of BOY MEETS GIRL, directed by Eric Schaeffer. BOY MEETS GIRL stars Trans actress Michelle Hendley in her debut with this winning, touching romantic comedy. Hendley plays Ricky, a trans girl in small town Kentucky lamenting her uneventful love life to her best friend since childhood, Robby (Michael Welch), whose love life is shallow but plentiful. He playfully suggests she try dating a woman & mere moments later Francesca (Alexandra Turshen) walks into her life, leaving her flustered & wondering if she should keep a more open mind. Complications arise, of course, when Francesca reveals that she is engaged & that her family is not as welcoming of trans folks as she is. BOY MEETS GIRL may appear as a simple love story but it’s told well & it absolutely cannot be missed. Director Eric Schaeffer is set to attend the screening, along with trans actress Michelle Hendley. There will be a pre-screening reception at 5:30P prior to the 7:30P screening. Reeling32: The Chicago LGBT International Film Festival runs September 18th to 25th.
For Info & Tix: reelingfilmfestival.org
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Friday, September 12, 2014

New Fabulous Film PRIDE

PRIDE is one of the best films of the year. Winner of the Queer Palm at Cannes Film Festival PRIDE takes you on an emotional & historical ride with our LGBT community in the United Kingdom. The film was inspired by an extraordinary true story that began in 1984 when Margaret Thatcher was Prime Minister & the National Union of Mineworkers were on strike. This motivated a London-based group of brave gay & lesbian activists to form “Lesbians & Gays Support The Miners” (LGSM) to raise money to support the strikers’ families. At first the Union rejected their support but a small mining village in Wales came together with LGSM after addressing their own homophobia & changed hearts & minds in the UK forever. The cast is led by Bill Nighy (The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel), Imelda Staunton (Maleficent), Dominic West (The Hour), Paddy Considine (Submarine), Andrew Scott (Sherlock), Joseph Gilgun (Lockout), George MacKay (How I Live Now) & Ben Schnetzer (Warcraft). PRIDE is directed by Tony Winner Matthew Warchus (God of Carnage) from a screenplay by Stephen Beresford, the dramatic comedy was produced by David Livingstone with Cameron McCracken, Christine Langan & Natascha Wharton serving as executive producers. This must-see CBS Film opens in theaters September 26th. Be prepared to laugh, cry & be inspired.
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Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Gay Marriage & US Supreme Court

The U.S. Supreme Court will consider whether to grant review of appeals to Virginia’s Bostic case along with four other cases challenging the constitutionality of gay & lesbian marriage bans in Utah, Oklahoma, Wisconsin & Indiana. The cases will be considered at the Justices’ private conference scheduled for September 29th. Adam Umhoefer, Executive Director of American Foundation for Equal Rights stated, “Gay & lesbian couples in Virginia should not have to wait another day to enjoy their right to marry. The distribution of our case for the Court’s consideration brings us one step closer to our mission of marriage equality for all Americans. Our Constitution’s guarantee of liberty & equality soon will be realized for all loving & committed couples, no matter what state they reside in.” The Highest Court is expected to release an Orders List on October 6th that will indicate which, if any marriage equality case or cases it will consider for its 2014-2015 term. The Supreme Court has the option to grant multiple marriage cases, grant only one, delay consideration of any cases, or deny all of them. Should the Court grant review in Bostic, the Justices will go on to consider whether Virginia’s marriage ban violates the Due Process & Equal Protection Clauses of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. If the Court denies review in Bostic, the July 2014 decision of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit that struck down Virginia’s marriage ban will be binding & gay & lesbian Virginians will be able to marry in the Commonwealth. Updates to Come…:)
For More Info: afer.org
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Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Primary Elections In Five States

Tuesday September 9th we have primary elections in Delaware, New York, Rhode Island, New Hampshire & Massachusetts. We want to remind our LGBT community in these states to be sure to get out & vote. Here in Massachusetts we have a chance to elect candidates who support pro-choice & LGBT equality. The 3 democratic gubernatorial candidates in Massachusetts are all LGBT supportive with Attorney General Martha Coakley leading. The race for Attorney General is way too close to call but we have the opportunity to vote for a candidate who is not only openly gay but a former Assistant Attorney General who is the most accomplished, competent, personable, progressive & experienced candidate for the position. Maura Healey has been a champion of LGBT rights for years. She was instrumental challenging & defeating the Defense of Marriage Act. Also a new report just released shows that young people between ages 18 & 30 turned out to the polls in the last 2 presidential election cycles at the highest rates since 1992 & played a particularly important role in the 2012 votes on marriage equality. Hannah Hussey, Research Associate for Center for American Progress LGBT Research & Communications Project stated, “The last few election cycles have made clear that the youth demographic is becoming far more engaged than it had been & that young people are passionate about a broad range of progressive causes. This analysis shows that young voters are defining new modes of political engagement & illustrates how progressive movements can capitalize on that.” Primary elections are important so go to the polls today in these 5 states & vote.
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Monday, September 8, 2014

Maura Healey For Attorney General

In Massachusetts there is an important primary election on Tuesday September 9th. The most crucial race is for Attorney General. The AG race will be decided in the primary, while the other races will end up as fights in the general election. We have been supporting Maura Healey since she announced her candidacy in 2013. Arline Isaacson, Co-Chair of the Massachusetts Gay & Lesbian Political Caucus stated, "The LGBT Community in Massachusetts is lucky to have so many good candidates to vote for in this year's September 9th primary election. The most important race for the LGBT community in this primary has to be the race for Attorney General. We have the opportunity to vote for a candidate who is not only an out lesbian, but a former Assistant Attorney General who is widely viewed as the most accomplished, competent, personable, progressive & experienced candidate for the position. Maura Healey has been a champion of LGBT rights for years. And has received accolades for her leadership & successes running several of the most important divisions of the AG's office. Our community & our state would be very well served to have Maura Healey elected Attorney General. It's a very close race & the LGBT community could make THE key difference in determining the outcome. Maura has run an impressive race & is now within striking distance of winning the primary.” Make sure you get out & vote for Maura Healey for Attorney General. Listen To Maura Healey Candidate For Massachusetts Attorney General Talk About Her Campaign & More:
For More Info: maurahealey.com
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Saturday, September 6, 2014

"Gen Silent" LGBT Film Event

The Massachusetts LGBT group Flashback Sunday is having a special screening of Filmmaker Stu Maddux’s documentary “Gen Silent” on Thursday September 11th at Fenway Health in Boston. “Gen Silent” puts a face on what experts in the film call an epidemic; gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender seniors so afraid of being subject to discrimination or worse in long-term/health care that many go back into the closet. Their surprising decisions are captured through intimate access to their day-to-day lives over the course of a year in Boston, Massachusetts. Barrie Atkin, Executive Producer of Gen Silent stated, “Since 2010, this extraordinary & moving documentary has changed lives around the world – helping build awareness of the unique challenges that older lesbian, gay, transgender & bisexual adults face as they age. “Gen Silent” is not just about the challenges of LGBT aging; it is a very important & “real” documentary about aging, period. It’s an important film for all of us to see, no matter what our age. Filmed in Boston in 2009, this documentary has truly mobilized a movement. “Gen Silent” has inspired audiences around the world to take action & received many awards for best documentary.” The September 11th "Gen Silent" event is free & dinner is included. Dinner is at 5:30P & the screening will begins at 6:30P followed by a discussion at Fenway Health, 1340 Boylston Street 9th Floor Boston Massachusetts but space is limited & you must RSVP by calling 617.396.4926 LISTEN: Director Stu Maddux Talks About Gen Silent & More:
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Friday, September 5, 2014

Two More States For Gay Marriage

In Indiana & Wisconsin Thursday the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals has affirmed lower court rulings striking down gay marriage bans in those states. This is one more step closer to securing marriage equality across the country. Now once again the U.S. Supreme Court is being bombarded with amici curiae briefs filed by businesses, states, family & equality groups. The briefs agree with the States of Utah, Virginia & Oklahoma that the high court should take a case or cases. Each brief urges the court to resolve the harm & discrimination imposed by gay & lesbian marriage bans & correct this situation for businesses, states & families. It's time for the U.S. Supreme Court to do what the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court did over a decade ago & end marriage discrimination. Wisconsin U.S. Rep. Mark Pocan, a co-chair of the Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus stated, “Today’s decision puts Wisconsin back on track to ensuring full equality for every American. It is clear discriminatory laws that treat LGBT couples as second-class citizens will not stand in a court of law. I urge Governor Scott Walker & Attorney General J. B. Van Hollen to respect the Court’s ruling & the spirit of the U.S. Constitution. In ruling after ruling, it has become unmistakable that the promise of America is everyone should be treated equally & with dignity. Today’s ruling brings us one step closer to fulfilling that promise.” Congressman Pocan is a tireless advocate for the rights of the LGBT community & has been married to his husband Phil since 2006. Updates to Come...:)
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Thursday, September 4, 2014

Provincetown Swim For Life

The 27th Provincetown Harbor Swim For Life & Paddler Flotilla takes place Saturday September 6th. Since 1987 thousands of swimmers, kayakers, volunteers & the public have been participating in this fabulous Provincetown fundraising tradition presented by the Provincetown Community Compact. Swimmers across the country will swim the 1.4 mile across Provincetown Harbor to benefit the following LGBT community organizations and LGBT ally projects: Helping Our Women, AIDS Support Group of Cape Cod, Outer Cape Health Services, Provincetown Rescue Squad, Lower Cape Ambulance, Academy at Provincetown Schools, Soup Kitchen of Provincetown & The Compact Community Fund. Last year swimmers raised over $200,000. Jay Critchley, one of the original founders of the event stated, “When people gather with passion & vision great things are accomplished. For over a quarter century, in Provincetown’s Harbor of Refuge, thousands of swimmers braved its unpredictable waters − its chilly currents, surging tides, & their deep fears − raising $3M+ for AIDS, women’s health & the community. Celebrating its 27th year, this quintessential Provincetown tradition symbolizes the heroic efforts of a community devastated by the pandemic & its unequivocal response to it. The Swim For Life & Paddler Flotilla has become a catalyst for a nurturing community, offering connectedness, healthy exercise & continuity for those who return year after year.”
For More Info: swim4life.org
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Wednesday, September 3, 2014

LGBT Aging Special Report

The Journal of Gerontological Social Work has released a triple issue entitled “Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender (LGBT) Aging: The Role of Gerontological Social Work”, that’s available for a free download all of September 2014. The issue includes 18 articles & focuses on lesbian, gay, bisexual & transgender older adults & aging, an often unaddressed sector of our community. The introduction to the special issues asks readers to “review each of the articles in this special issue in an effort to grasp the potential for the profession of social work to provide leadership with the LGBT aging population in all of these arenas, as well as in program development.” The vast areas of research in this issue cast light on the broad diversity in the aging LGBT population. Areas of concern include: human rights & policy; issues related to ageism, heterosexism, & gender identity; relations with families & relationships; social support networks; issues related to racial & multicultural identity; & health & mental health disparities. Guest Editor Noell L. Rowan states, “This work is the first of its kind in a social work academic journal & the release of these articles is timely given the current political & social climate in America.” This is important & enlightening information for our entire LGBT community. 
For More Info & Free Download….
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Tuesday, September 2, 2014

LGBTQ Kids Return To School

LGBTQ teens are four times more likely to attempt suicide than their heterosexual peers after facing bullying incidents. In America 33 states still don't protect LGBTQ students with anti-bullying laws. With the school year beginning this week across America GLSEN (the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network), the nation’s leading education organization focused on ensuring safe schools for all students, has launched GLSEN’s 25 Days for Safer Schools back-to-school initiative. As part of the effort GLSEN will highlight a different educational resource each day for 25 consecutive school days through September 29th. GLSEN programs & resources have been used in thousands of classrooms & educational communities across all 50 states & the District of Columbia. In addition to kicking off the back-to-school season, GLSEN is celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2015. GLSEN mission is that all students deserve a safe & affirming school environment where they can learn & grow. GLSEN has led the way on LGBT issues in K-12 education since 1990. Through pioneering original research, innovative program development, community organizing, student leadership development & targeted state & federal advocacy, GLSEN has seen the impact of its work through the development of educational resources, direct engagement of youth & educators & national programs like GLSEN’s Day of Silence, the country’s largest student-led event, No Name-Calling Week, Changing the Game & Think B4 You Speak.
For More Info: glsen.org
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Monday, September 1, 2014

Not So Gay Labor Day

Labor Day is always a bittersweet holiday for our LGBT community. While we've made so many advances in securing marriage equality for gay & lesbian couples 40 years of advocacy has failed to secure federal nondiscrimination protections for LGBT workers. Winnie Stachelberg, Executive Vice President for External Affairs at the Center for American Progress stated, “Even if gay & lesbian couples could marry in all 50 states tomorrow, it would still be perfectly legal to fire someone for being gay under federal law & in a majority of states. In other words, workers would be able to marry the person they love, but if they put that wedding picture on their desk, they might lose their job. While we are seeing recent victories on the marriage equality front, we must do more to address the real & serious problem of employment discrimination against LGBT workers.” When President Obama signed an executive order barring federal contractors from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity we hoped we were one step closer to passing ENDA (Employment Non-Discrimination Act), which would provide our LGBT community federal workplace protections. Then with the Supreme Court’s obscene Hobby Lobby decision in July it has become clear that the current version of ENDA, which allows religious organizations to discriminate based on sexual orientation & gender identity must not pass. Let’s get religious exemptions removed from ENDA & secure federal workplace protections for our LGBT community. We need to give LGBT workers a fair shot to get ahead in life by making sure employers cannot fire, harass, deny a raise, or refuse to hire someone based on sexual orientation or gender identity.
Listen: Writer Michelle Theall Talks Memoir & LGBT Issues
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