Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Wisconsin Transgender Victory

The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals issued a groundbreaking ruling Tuesday in favor of Ash Whitaker the transgender student plaintiff in Whitaker v. Kenosha Unified School District. In a unanimous decision authored by Judge Ann Claire Williams the court upheld the preliminary injunction issued by a federal district court in September 2016 that has allowed Ash a senior at Tremper High School in the Kenosha Unified School District (KUSD) in Kenosha, Wisconsin to use the boys’ restrooms at school throughout his senior year without fear of discipline or invasive surveillance by school officials. Whitaker stated, "I am thrilled that the Seventh Circuit recognized my right to be treated as the boy that I am at school. After facing daily humiliation at school last year from being threatened with discipline & being constantly monitored by school staff just to use the bathroom, the district court’s injunction in September allowed me to be a typical senior in high school & to focus on my classes, after-school activities, applying to college & building lasting friendships. As I look forward to college next year, I hope my case will help other transgender students in Kenosha & elsewhere to just be treated the same as everyone else without facing discrimination & harassment from school administrators.” Kris Hayashi, Executive Director Transgender Law Center concluded, “This is a great victory for transgender students. The battleground may be bathrooms, but the real issue is fairness & transgender people’s ability to go to school, to work & simply to exist in public spaces. This win makes that more possible for more people.”
For More Info: transgenderlawcenter.org
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Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Designing Women 2017 Awards

New York Women in Film & Television’s Designing Women awards event takes place June 6th in NYC to honor renowned costume designers, makeup artists & hairstylists in film, television & digital media. This fabulous showcase is co-presented by Variety & is attended by actors, producers, directors, writers, fashion industry leaders & of course designers. Proceeds from Designing Women benefit the nonprofit educational programs of New York Women in Film & Television. This year’s honorees are hair stylist Melissa Forney (Hidden Figures, Empire, Selma), makeup artist Kyra Panchenko, (Snatched, The Girl on the Train, Kill Bill) & costume designer Melissa Toth (Manchester by the Sea, The Visitor, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind). The costume hair & makeup design team from the Netflix hit Jessica Jones will receive the Variety Ensemble Award. The presenters will include actor David Costabile (Billions, Breaking Bad), actor Carmen Ejogo (Selma, The Girlfriend Experience), Krysten Ritter (Jessica Jones, Don't Trust the B---- in Apartment 23) & actor, writer, producer & comedian Amy Schumer. Sasheer Zamata (Saturday Night Live) will emcee the event. The award presentations are accompanied by video interviews of the honorees & clips illustrating their work. At the reception following the awards ceremony, costumes, sketches, posters & stills illustrating the work of the honorees are displayed. This year's ceremony will take place at NYU School of Law, 40 Washington Square South in NYC on June 6th at 7P. Tickets are $75 for members & $150 for non-members.
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Saturday, May 27, 2017

Atomic Veterans Speak (AUDIO)

To commemorate Memorial Day I talked to filmmaker Garry DuFour about his upcoming documentary “Atomic Veterans Speak”. From 1942 until 1962 almost 200,000 U.S. soldiers were often unknowingly exposed to different levels of radiation during the testing of atomic & hydrogen weapons. DuFour stated, “I first learned about the Atomic Veterans while working as a staffer on the U.S. Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs for the late Senator Alan Cranston, Chairman from 1979-81. Numerous atomic veterans were writing in & calling about their chronic cancers which were a direct result from the secret nuclear weapons testing sites & no medical records were reported for these veterans known as guinea pigs. Our committee was the first Congressional action to recognize & secure health benefits.” DuFour handled correspondence between the government & veterans who were exposed nuclear radiation & fallout from Top Secret experiments conducted by the US Government in the early development of nuclear weapons during WWII. During this time he photocopied many of these letters that explained how these soldiers were used as guinea pigs to see the effects. This information was not released to the public until the Clinton Administration in the mid 1990’s. On May 31st at Manchester Community Library in Manchester, Vermont Garry will be talking about his film “Atomic Veterans Speak” joined by two Atomic Veterans & a scientist who helped create the first H-Bomb at 5:30P. The event is free & open to everyone.
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Friday, May 26, 2017

DeVos Discriminatory Position

Secretary DeVos has reinforced her homophobic position stating that she would not intervene if states allowed discrimination. Eliza Byard GLSEN's Executive Director stated, "It is appalling that Secretary DeVos could not name a single example of discrimination that would disqualify a school from receiving federal funds. Equality of opportunity for every child is a bedrock American commitment. Living up to that promise is an ongoing investment. Any betrayal of this commitment in the name of “states’ rights” & “local control” is a shameful stain on our society & the antithesis of true education leadership. No child in this country should be abandoned because they are disabled, LGBTQ, black or brown, Muslim, an immigrant, because their family is poor, or because they are ‘different’ in any other way. Painful, damaging discrimination against children is taking place daily in our schools. More than half of LGBTQ students have experienced discrimination at school. Last year, more than 16,000 families turned to the Department of Education for help when their children were hurt by discrimination of all kinds. Is Secretary DeVos truly prepared to turn away from addressing instances of discrimination, in violation of the law?” Nathan Smith, GLSEN Director of Public Policy concluded, "Allowing discrimination is not a ‘states’ right’, as Secretary DeVos suggests. Discrimination of any kind against students has no place in publicly-funded schools or programs. The U.S. Department of Education itself is charged by Congress with civil rights enforcement responsibilities & has a vital role to play in stepping up for students who lack the voice or resources to stand up for themselves.”
For More Info: glsen.org
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Thursday, May 25, 2017

LGBTQ Task Force Conference

The National LGBTQ Task Force has announced that Alexa Elizabeth Rodriguez, Ben de Guzman, Eliot Sutler, Rodney McKenzie, Jr. & Terrance Laney will be serving as host committee co-chairs for the 2018 Creating Change Conference. Celebrating its 30th anniversary the organizing & skills building conference is the nation's largest gathering of LGBTQ & allied advocates. The conference is set to take place January 24th to 28th in 2018 at the Marriott Wardman Park, 2660 Woodley Road N.W in Washington, D.C. Russell Roybal, Deputy Executive Director, National LGBTQ Task Force stated, "We’re thrilled to have Alexa, Ben, Eliot, Rodney & Terrance join us as host committee co-chairs for the 2018 Creating Change Conference. The annual conference would not succeed without the help of the passionate & tireless work of the host committee & volunteers. Creating Change will be celebrating 30 years of training LGBTQ advocates from across the nation & beyond. We invite LGBTQ & allied advocates in the DMV area to join the host committee & help us make the 2018 Creating Change Conference a huge success!" The National LGBTQ Task Force works to secure full freedom, justice, equity, & equality for our LGBTQ community. For over forty years, the organization has been at the forefront of the social justice movement by training thousands of organizers & advocating for change at the federal, state & local level.
For More Info: creatingchange.org
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Wednesday, May 24, 2017

St. Petersburg Trans Pride March

Florida’s largest LGBTQ Pride event has announced an historic event happening at this year’s Pride. For the first time in the state’s history the St. Pete Pride parade will kick off by the TransPride March consisting of all members of the transgender, gender-non-conforming, queer communities, their families, friends, allies & supporters on Saturday June 24th. Eric Skains, Executive Director of St Pete Pride stated, “Somewhere along the way, in the fight for acceptance & equality, our movement allowed the rights of trans individuals to be pushed to be back of the line. Pride celebrations all over the nation accepted & often embraced, the term ‘Gay Pride’ even though it was those within the Trans community who helped begin the Pride movement. We could very well not be celebrating Pride today if it weren't for the Trans community. Pride month began with Trans people & the issues facing the Trans community & the progress made, need to be recognized at every Pride.” Gina Duncan, Director of Transgender Equality, Equality Florida concluded, “TransAction Florida is so proud to sponsor this historic march recognizing the entire spectrum of the transgender community. It is time that all identities feel safe to step forward out of the shadows and demand that the world see us as we see ourselves. We call on all Floridians to join us at this historic event.” The TransPride March is proudly sponsored by Equality Florida & its transgender inclusion initiative, TransAction Florida. The first 500 people to register will be given a TransPride T-shirt & transgender pride flag. All marchers are encouraged to bring transgender pride flags.
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Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Texas Heartless Legislature

The Texas House of Representatives has passed S.B. 2078 that bars transgender students from using bathrooms consistent with their gender identity. The House also voted to pass a bill that would allow publicly funded adoption agencies to turn away qualified potential parents because they are LGBT, unmarried partners or religious minorities. Laura E. Durso, Center for American Progress Vice President of the LGBT Research & Communications Project stated, “Politicians in Texas are sinking to new lows after forcing through two bills amounting state-mandated discrimination against Texas students & families. Despite widespread opposition from individual Texans & businesses alike, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick is ignoring his constituents in favor of a cruel bill that targets transgender students for humiliation & harassment. Today, a staggering 77 percent of respondents who are out or perceived to be transgender report being harassed, discriminated against, or even assaulted in school. Transgender students deserve a safe learning environment, just like every other young person. This bathroom ban will only make schools even more hostile to transgender youth than they already are. This is North Carolina’s H.B. 2 all over again but this time, Texas legislators are directly targeting transgender kids. This type of discrimination has been rejected across the United States, drawing outrage & condemnation from every corner of the country. This follows yesterday’s unconscionable vote allowing adoption & foster care agencies to turn away qualified parents just because they’re LGBT or religious minorities. It’s clear that the Texas legislature is willing to put kids at risk to satisfy pressure from the far right. Texans need to leverage their voices this week & demand Governor Greg Abbott (R) reject these dangerous bills, which would make the Texas legislature a national embarrassment.”
For More Info: equalitytexas.org
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Monday, May 22, 2017

Michele Karlsberg To Be Honored

Lambda Literary the global leader advancing LGBTQ literature has announced that publicist Michele Karlsberg will receive the 2017 Publishing Professional Award at the 29th Annual Lambda Literary Awards ceremony on June 12th in New York City. Lambda's Publishing Professional Award honors a distinguished individual from our LGBTQ community whose innovative work in the publishing industry promotes & promulgates LGBTQ literature. Amy Scholder, Board of Trustees Vice President stated, "I have been impressed by Michele's contributions to the LGBTQ publishing world for many years. It's not only her commitment to her authors & our community which puts her in mind for Lambda Literary's Publishing Professional Award, but the way she inspires us with her passion & dedication to social justice for all." As a publicist Michelle has effectively carry out publicity & marketing campaigns for authors, organizations, events, comedians, musicians & film/theater professionals. Her list of clients has included Katherine Forrest, Felice Picano, Kate Clinton, Stephen Fry, Jewelle Gomez, Assotto Saint, Dorothy Allison, Martin Duberman, Judy Grahn & Minnie Bruce Pratt just to name a few. The Lambda Literary Awards (the “Lammys”) identify & celebrate the best LGBT books of the year & affirms that LGBTQ stories are part of the literature of the world. The Lammys will also be honoring Jacqueline Woodson with the Visionary Award & Jeanette Winterson with the Trustee Award. There will be special introductions by Cynthia Nixon & AM Homes & Mx Justin Vivian Bond will host the event.
For Info & Tix: lambdaliterary.org
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Sunday, May 21, 2017

Susan Claassen As Edith Head

Susan Claassen will perform her fabulous one-woman show “A Conversation With Edith Head” on Saturday June 10th at 7:30P & Sunday June 11th at 2:30P presented by MAMM Alliance to support the performing arts students at California State University Fullerton, CA. Claassen stated, “We are thrilled to help raise funds for Cal State Fullerton & empower the artists of tomorrow with these benefit performances! The MAMM Alliance is a support group for the performing arts at Cal State Fullerton. The Alliance is named in honor of arts patron & philanthropist, Marcy Arroues Mulville.” The play is based on the book “Edith Head’s Hollywood” by Edith Head & Paddy Calistro & continues the legacy of Hollywood’s iconic costume designer. For 6 decades the legendary costume designer Edith Head worked on over 1100 films, dressed the greatest stars of Hollywood from Mae West to Grace Kelly, received 35 Academy Award nominations & won an unprecedented 8 Oscars. This will be Ms. Claassen's first appearance in the greater Los Angeles area in five years. The play is filled with behind-the-scenes stories about great movie legends & their delicious intimate encounters with Miss Head during their costume fittings & other personal recollections. As Lucille Ball stated, “Edith knew the figure faults of every top star. And she never told. Edith always knew how to keep a secret.” However in this one-woman show some secrets just might be revealed & fashion tips freely given. I talked to Claassen about “A Conversation With Edith Head” in this exclusive audio byte:
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Thursday, May 18, 2017

Texas Transgender Youth At Risk

Lt. Governor Dan Patrick is threatening Texas lawmakers to pass a bill that would discriminate & harm our transgender youth. Chuck Smith, Equality Texas CEO responded stating, “The lt. governor threw a temper tantrum today threatening a special session he has no authority to call that will cost the state millions of dollars, put the funding of agencies at risk & hurt everyday Texans- so he can get one bill passed that discriminates against an already bullied group of kids, transgender children. Being transgender in Texas is hard enough without having to face public threats from the lt. governor. This grand-standing & false rhetoric is dangerous & will destroy our state. Business leaders large & small from all over the United States, faith leaders of all different religions from every single state & transgender people & their family members say our communities are strengthened when no one faces discrimination. Discriminatory bills targeting transgender Texans could cost the state of Texas more than $5 billion dollars if we choose a path that encourages & legalizes discrimination. Protecting everyone living in our state from discrimination is a Texas value. The lt. governor needs to stop these public threats against an already marginalized & vulnerable population & stop wasting time during the 85th legislative session.” Equality Texas works to secure full equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual & transgender Texans through political action, education, community organizing & collaboration.
For More Info: equalitytexas.org
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Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Chelsea Manning Prison Release

As Chelsea Manning is released from prison today after 7 years of incarceration a group of prominent musicians have launched an online benefit compilation to show their support & raise funds to help cover Chelsea’s basic living expenses as she transitions back into the free world. It features a wide range of artists including Graham Nash (Crosby, Stills, Nash, & Young), Thurston Moore (Sonic Youth), Against Me!, Tom Morello (Prophets of Rage, Rage Against the Machine), Talib Kweli, Downtown Boys, Amanda Palmer (Dresden Dolls), Priests, Anti-Flag, Kimya Dawson, Ted Leo (who contributed an unreleased track), Mirah (contributing an unreleased track), B. Dolan, Sammus (featuring Jean Grae), Tommie Sunshine, The Kominas, Screaming Females (who contributed a never before released track), Chris Farren (Fake Problems), Kevin Devine & Bonfire Madigan (featuring Laura MacFarlane of Sleater-Kinney). Graham Nash stated, “Chelsea Manning is one of my heroes. Anyone that has the courage to disturb the ‘status quo’, to ‘rock the boat’ as she did is very brave & what she did was show some truth to the American people about what the government was doing in our name. God Bless her.” Chase Strangio, Chelsea’s attorney at the ACLU concluded, "It is truly inspiring to see so much support for Chelsea as she begins her life outside of the relentless abuses of our carceral systems. Over the past seven years Chelsea has been systematically denied the health care that she needs, been subjected to cruel & dehumanizing treatments aimed to undermine the very core of who she is & has survived unthinkable stretches in solitary confinement. All of the support that she receives will go directly to her & will ensure that she has the financial & emotional resources she needs to survive & recover after these years inside."
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Monday, May 15, 2017

Boston Youth Pride Events

Boston Pride & Boston Alliance of Gay Lesbian Bisexual Transgender Youth (BAGLY) have announced that Massachusetts Youth Pride Festival & Parade will take place on Saturday, May 20th from 11A to 4P at Boston City Hall Plaza. Massachusetts Youth Pride is celebrating 23 years of queer youth movement in Massachusetts. This celebration is the oldest youth-led, adult-supported LGBTQ Youth Pride celebration in the country. The theme for this year’s Massachusetts Youth Pride festival is “Resist, Exist, Persist.” The theme of this year’s Boston Pride Week is “Stronger Together.” Sylvain Bruni, President of Boston Pride stated, “Our theme ‘Stronger Together’ encompasses the entire LGBTQ community & an important part of that is our youth. When we create safe spaces & programs for LGBTQ youth, like the Massachusetts Youth Pride Festival & Parade, we are helping the next generation to be free to be themselves & live their lives with dignity.” Bethany M. Allen, Director of Statewide Initiatives at BAGLY concluded, “We are expecting a great turnout for this year’s Youth Pride Festival & Parade & encourage youth of all ages to attend. The theme of Youth Pride is always chosen by young people, with input from members of our statewide network. Resist, Exist, Persist, or “REP” for short, is all about resilience & representation. Queer & trans youth are sending the message that they are here to stay.” There is no cost to march in the parade & groups are able to register the day of as well. Any group registering before May 17th will be entered in a drawing to ride the Duck Boat that will lead the Youth Pride Parade. The 37th annual BAGLY Prom will take place immediately following the Youth Pride Parade & Festival.
For More Info: bagly.org
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Friday, May 12, 2017

Boston Pride Night At Fenway Park

The fifth annual Pride Night @ Fenway Park takes place on Friday, June 9th featuring the Boston Red Sox vs. Detroit Tigers at 7:10P. This year Pride Night @ Fenway Park game tickets include a pre-game Pride Party on the Right Field Roof Deck celebrating Boston Pride Week theme “Stronger Together.” Sylvain Bruni, President of Boston Pride stated, “The Red Sox have been a great Pride partner over the past five years & we continue the relationship with Pride Night @ Fenway Park on June 9th. Our theme this year ‘Stronger Together’ truly reflects the commitment that the Red Sox organization has made to Boston Pride & the LGBTQ community. We look forward to a great night.” Travis A. Pollio, Boston Red Sox Manager of Group Sales concluded, “The Red Sox & Boston Pride are excited to announce our annual Pride Night at Fenway Park on Friday, June 9th. This event, benefitting Boston Pride, is the flagship event of Pride Week celebrating equality & community. This year, all Pride Night attendees are invited to a pre-game party on the Right Field Roof Deck.” In addition, a member of the LGBTQ community will throw out the ceremonial first pitch prior to the game & the New Hampshire Gay Men’s Chorus will sing the National Anthem. Ticket proceeds will go towards Boston Pride events and programming. Boston Pride Week takes place June 2nd to June 11th.
For Info & Tix: bostonpride.org
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Moms Rising Washington March

Ahead of Mother’s Day on Friday May 12th members of MomsRising & allied groups will gather at Trump International Hotel 1100 Pennsylvania Avenue NW in Washington, D.C. to deliver thousands of Statue of Liberty figures to President Donald Trump, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions & every member of the U.S. Senate. Moms will be standing up for liberty & justice as they remind leaders that our diversity & people caring about each other are what has made our nation strong, innovative & prosperous; not the opposite. Yet right now the rights of immigrant families & Muslims are under direct attack as is our access to health care. These dangerous policy directions hurt our families, economy, communities & our children’s future. Speakers will include: Donna Norton, Executive Vice President, MomsRising, Rev. Jennifer Butler, CEO, Faith in Public Life, Jessie Hahn, Labor & Employment Policy Attorney, National Immigration Law Center, Manar Waheed, Legislative & Advocacy Counsel, American Civil Liberties Union, Fatima Goss Graves, President and CEO, National Women's Law Center, Carolina Rubio, MomsRising member & immigration lawyer & Shereen Abdelfattah, MomsRising member & North Carolina business owner. Following the march, moms will remind leaders that it’s time to raise the torch for liberty, justice & freedom; not extinguish our light. We've come a long way as a nation together & we’re not turning our backs on each other, or on the American dream, now.
For More Info: momsrising.org
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Thursday, May 11, 2017

Keeping Gay Travelers Safe

Hornet the world’s premier gay social network has announced the launch of the “Know Your Rights” campaign in an effort to educate gay men of their rights as brutal violence against the LGBTQ community is on the rise worldwide. Hornet worked closely with the United Nations’ “Free & Equal” campaign to provide its 18 million-plus users the resources to stay safe while traveling abroad. Sean Howell, Hornet President stated, "The instrument developed by Hornet is very relevant in a context where LGBTQ people worldwide remain at high risk for severe human rights abuses including abduction, unlawful detention or extrajudicial killing. Our priority is to do everything in our power to protect LGBTQ community members from such abuses. But efforts are also needed to ensure those responsible for such abuses are prosecuted & held accountable & that victims are able to obtain remedy for the abuses they have suffered. The first step must be to report these abuses which too often remain invisible." In the midst of the imprisonment, torture & murder of gay men in Chechnya, Russia, Hornet created an in-app system to update users of anti-LGBTQ policies in countries where laws target the LGBTQ community. As users travel across international borders, Hornet & United Nations’ “Free & Equal” have developed helpful tips to ensure safety for both U.S. & non-U.S. citizens. Tips include disabling Touch ID on electronic devices, uninstalling apps from your phone that could reveal sexuality identity or personal information & more. The campaign will also provide a map of the various countries where homosexuality is criminalized & information on where & how to report human rights violations from around the world.
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Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Gavin Grimm & Capital Trans Pride

Gavin Grimm will be a guest speaker at Capital Trans Pride that takes place on Saturday May 20th at Studio Theatre, 1501 14th St NW, Washington, DC from 9A to 7P. Gavin Grimm is the transgender male student at Gloucester High School in Virginia whose suit against the local Virginia school board brought national attention to trans issues for the right to use the bathroom of his choice. This annual event brings together members of the transgender community, allies, colleagues & friends for a day of workshops & panel discussions on a variety of issues important to our transgender community. Bianca Rey, Executive Producer of Capital Trans Pride stated, “Capital Trans Pride brings together the community for both a celebration & to share important information that has the potential to change the lives of those who attend. We’ve made significant progress regarding visibility, empowerment & rights, but now more than ever, we must all continue to work to secure full equality.” Also at the event Capital Pride Engendered Spirit recipients Dr. Stacy Karpen & Hayden Mora will be recognized. The Resource Fair includes participation by more than 25 organizations that provide services & opportunities for the Trans community. Confirmed workshops for Capital Trans Pride include, "Identity Documents and Name Changes," "Safer Sex for Trans Bodies," "Genderqueer 101," "Understanding the Trans Attracted Man" & “Resume Building in English & Spanish” led by Booz Allen Hamilton. There will be a total of nine workshops throughout the day.
For More Info: capitalpride.org
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Monday, May 8, 2017

Celebration of Courage Awards

With the global horrors happening to our LGBTQ people around the world including the detention & torture of gay men in Chechnya & the arrest of 53 gay men in Nigeria it is imperative to take stock of the advances we have made on LGBTIQ rights globally. The Annual Celebration sponsored by Outright Action international honors Courageous LGBTIQ human rights defenders. This fabulous LGBTIQ Gala will take place at the Delegates Dining Room of the United Nations on Monday May 15th from 6P to 9P in NYC. This year the Felipa De Souza Awardee is Caleb Orozco the man who brought down the sodomy law in Belize. Orozco stated, “Winning this award is recognition that LGBTIQ advancements in one country has ripple effects that can change the world. I managed to bring down the sodomy law in Belize, but this verdict has the potential to advance LGBTIQ rights in the Caribbean & globally. Even when faced with personal risk & when odds are not in our favor, it is important to be courageous & stand up for what is right.” Also being honored will be Logo TV with the OutSpoken Award, Blanche Wiesen Cook the acclaimed biographer on the life of Eleanor Roosevelt be honored with an OutStanding Award & Tracey Norman who is the model who lost her career when they found out she was trans & who revived her career in her sixties will be a special guest. The event will be hosted by performer & artist Mx. Justin Vivian Bond.
For Info & Tix: outrightinternational.org
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Friday, May 5, 2017

Stop American Health Care Act

If the American Health Care Act passes the Senate it will take away insurance coverage for millions of Americans & end protections for people with pre-existing conditions. The American Health Care Act passed the House with 217 votes & not a single Democrat voted for it. The American Health Care Act puts the health of people living with or at risk for HIV & or hepatitis in jeopardy. Kelsey Louie, CEO of Gay Men's Health Crisis (GMHC) stated, “The U.S. House of Representatives has made a terrible mistake in passing the American Health Care Act, a disastrous bill that puts millions of lives at risk. This empty legislation is no replacement for the Affordable Care Act, a true lifeline that increased access to quality, affordable health care, guaranteed coverage for people with preexisting conditions, such as HIV & covered recommended preventative services, including HIV testing. We see this vote as a direct attack on our clients, many of whom may lose their health insurance & their ability to access PrEP. The potential outcomes are devastating, not just for the LGBT community, but for all Americans. At GMHC we believe that the Public Health of our Nation is driven by the health of our poorest & most vulnerable citizens, we must therefore leave no-one behind without adequate health care. We call on leaders in the U.S. Senate to stop this dangerous bill from moving forward.”
For More Info: gmhc.org
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Thursday, May 4, 2017

LGBTQ React To Religious Order

Though once again our LGBTQ community was spared a direct hit by the Trump administration we denounce his executive order easing the restrictions on politicking by tax exempt religious institutions, chipping away at a woman’s right to choose & the symbolism of signing it on the National Day of Prayer itself is an unconstitutional endorsement of religious belief. Rea Carey, Executive Director, National LGBTQ Task Force stated, "This order manipulates faith to advance the proliferation of discrimination against people who rely on reproductive contraception for their healthcare needs as well as tax payer funded use of money in politics to promote discrimination. The impact of this state-sponsored discrimination will be felt by women, LGBTQ people & other marginalized communities. The irony of this order is that millions of people of faith are affronted by the fact that Trump is misusing religious freedom to promote something they believe is morally wrong. Instead of providing ‘regulatory relief’ to those who want to be able to discriminate by imposing their faith on others, our leaders should be working diligently to give relief to the millions of people who are still vulnerable. Also, millions of people in this country will be deeply offended that Trump cited Dr. Martin Luther King Jr — who would have been appalled by this attempt to promote prejudice or bias in the name of religious freedom. Our constitution clearly already preserves these rights and covers the freedom of religion. No executive order will ever change that fundamental right."
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Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Congress Reintroduces Equality Act

Representative Linda Sánchez (D-CA) Vice Chair of the House Democratic Caucus & Vice-Chair of the Equality Caucus, joined Equality Caucus Co-Chair Representative David Cicilline (D-RI) & 192 members of the House of Representatives to introduce the Equality Act of 2017. This legislation amends the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to add nondiscriminatory protections for LGBTQ people based on sexual orientation & gender identity. Rep. Sánchez stated, “It is unacceptable that the law today still treats LGBTQ people as second class citizens. Everyone, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity, must be protected & treated equally under the law. The Equality Act of 2017 will ensure that the laws of our country provide LGBTQ Americans the same protections we all enjoy. I want to thank Congressman David Cicilline, & the co-chairs of the Equality Caucus, for their leadership & all of the members supporting this legislation. Respecting our brothers & sisters should not be a partisan issue. Ensuring every person in this country is treated fairly & justly should not be a partisan issue. I hope my Republican colleagues will step up & support this important bill.” David Cicilline (D-RI) added, “Fairness & equality are core American values. But millions of LGBT Americans are still viewed as less than equal in the eyes of the law today. I’m proud to introduce the Equality Act of 2017 with Senator Jeff Merkley. This bill ensures that every LGBT person can live their lives free from the fear of discrimination. Above all, it’s about honoring the values that guided our nation since its founding. It’s critical that Congress pass the Equality Act into law.” As of now, 29 states do not provide protections for LGBTQ Americans. Because of this, LGBTQ people can be fired, evicted, or denied a loan because of their sexual orientation & gender identity. The Equality Act would provide nationwide federal protection to LGBTQ people from discrimination. Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR) also introduced the same legislation in the U.S. Senate with 45 original co-sponsors.
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SAGE Table & Kenneth Cole Event

Kenneth Cole, Levi Jackman Foster & SAGE (Services & Advocacy for GLBT Elders) are presenting a special night on Tuesday, May 2nd at 7P to help build intergenerational connections in the LGBTQ community & talk about the intergenerational gathering happening this month on May 18th. There will also be a sneak-peek at the new limited-edition Kenneth Cole PRIDE Sneaker which I haven’t seen yet but I know I want a pair! Produced by SAGE & AARP, SAGE Table is designed for members of the LGBT community & allies to gather over a meal & talk about what caring looks like when age is not a barrier. Thousands are expected to participate at Tables across the country. On May 18th each gathering will bring together young & older members of our LGBTQ community & allies to break bread & build bonds. Q & A sessions at the events will bring young & older people together to share their perspectives on aging in the LGBTQ community & create stronger connections between generations. Organizers have set a goal of 10,000 participants who will meet in various venues. An estimated 3,000 have already committed. Tonight’s event takes place at Kenneth Cole Bond + Bowery Store, 328 Bowery Street, NYC.
For More Info & RSVP: sagetable.org
LISTEN: GLAAD's Sarah Kate Ellis-Henderson Talks Resistance
Hear Audio Interviews w/ LGBT Leaders @OUTTAKE VOICES™
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Monday, May 1, 2017

Resisting The Assault On America

Boston OLOC (Old Lesbians Organizing For Change) will be meeting on Sunday May 7th from 2P to 4P to talk about the frightening agenda of the Trump administration & its war on women, LGBT people, immigrants, people of color & the poor. The forum panel will include Kade Crockford (ACLU), Heiny Maldonado (Executive Director of Fuerza Laboral, an immigrant rights organization), Beverly Eugene (educator advocate, community organizer & planning member of Women of Color Weekend: WoCW), Lydia Edwards (Boston Office of Housing Stability) & Rebecca Hart Holder (NARAL). They will address the current threats to the civil liberties of the 99% and their responses & strategies to resisting the decisions coming out of the White House & this new impaired government. Sue Katz stated, “This promises to be one of the most important programs OLOC has ever offered. This is a scary time for many people in the USA & we will hear from speakers who are deeply committed to social justice who will highlight how this Administration is impacting their work & their lives. They'll speak to the kinds of resistance they are mounting & how the folks they work with are dealing with their fears.” The event takes place at Brookline Senior Center, 93 Winchester Street in Brookline, MA. Following the event there will be an early dinner at Sichuan Garden, 295 Washington Street in Brookline Village, Brookline.
For More Info: spearlman@hartford.edu
LISTEN: GLAAD's Sarah Kate Ellis-Henderson Talks Resistance
Hear Audio Interviews w/ LGBT Leaders @OUTTAKE VOICES™
OUTTAKE VOICES™ NOW ON HUFF POST...:)

SUPPORT OUTTAKE™ @ OUR EQUALITY STORE