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National Honor Our LGBT Elders Day


National Honor Our LGBT Elders Day is a celebration honoring our older LGBT community for the contributions they have made to the lives of others & takes place on Monday May 16th. It’s a day to thank those who pioneered our path to freedom. In 2016 the LGBT Health Resource Center of Chase Brexton Health Care officially added May 16th to the National Day registry as National Honor Our LGBT Elders Day. The gains made in recent years toward LGBT equality sit squarely on the backs of those whose struggles & victories, extraordinary courage & everyday authenticity pioneered the path toward freedom. National Honor Our LGBT Elders Day works to unite the LGBTQ community & its allies to celebrate & thank those individuals who fought on behalf of us all. Sam McClure, Director of the Center for LGBTQ Health Equity stated, "It's important to celebrate elders every day. Respect for those with more experience is an essential element of civility. In intergenerational dialogues, we discover we have differing opinions based on our experiences & perspectives. I love seeing Elders & youth learning from each other." There are so many ways to celebrate with your friends, family & community virtually with videos, stories & personal retrospectives. The Center for LGBTQ Health Equity at Chase Brexton Health Care was created for LGBTQ patients who have been traditionally overlooked, ignored & discriminated against by health care systems. Caring for LGBT older adults is a priority for LHRC & Chase Brexton & the inspiration behind the creation of National Honor Our LGBT Elders Day. For More Info…

NCES Needs To Be More Inclusive

Campus Pride along with 36 other national & regional organizations requested that the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) incorporate nonbinary students into all categories of the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS). A letter on behalf of the signatories was sent to the U.S. Department of Education Office of Postsecondary Education (OPE) who has oversight of NCES. A separate request for comment was also filed with the DOE online in the public request for comments. The organizations are recommending that NCES add a “nonbinary gender identity” category to all tables. As colleges are becoming more detailed in identifying the gender identities of their students, NCES should consider including additional gender options such as agender, gender fluid, genderqueer, questioning, trans man & trans woman. These would allow for a more comprehensive understanding of their students across gender identities. The letter states: “While we appreciate that the NCES is proposing to add a single question to IPEDS that asks colleges about the number of students at their institutions who identify as other than female or male, this change is not enough. Nonbinary students need to be included in all gender breakdowns so that their experiences, which are often very different from female & male students, can be recognized & fully accounted for in order to ensure a safe, inclusive learning environment. The value of nonbinary inclusion should outweigh any added reporting burden on colleges.” Since 2001 Campus Pride has been the leading national organization building future LGBTQ & ally leaders as well as creating safer communities at colleges and universities. For More Info…

LGBTQ Task Force Brings On New Staff

The National LGBTQ Task Force announces the addition of several new staff members including Reverend Nicole Garcia as Faith Work Director, Jaqueline “Jacky” Goh as Chief Development Officer, Wayne Rocque, Civic Engagement Manager & Court Betro Creating Change 365 Field Organizer. Kierra Johnson, Executive Director of the National LGBTQ Task Force stated, “As we continue to grow as an organization, confronting the relentless & escalating attacks on queer people at the state level & organizing to Queer the Vote in this critical election year, I am thrilled to have these amazing individuals bring their skills & experiences to the Task Force family. From continuing to expand our faith work to bringing our beloved Creating Change experience to communities year-round to engaging individuals in even deeper & more substantive ways, these additions to our staff will take us to new levels of impact.” Reverend Jim Gonia, Bishop, Rocky Mountain Synod, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America concluded, “I am absolutely delighted by the news that Pastor Nicole Garcia has been named as the new Faith Work Director for the National LGBTQ Task Force. Nicole’s deep personal passion & faith, as well as her commitment to work tirelessly across the lines of denomination & faith tradition will soon be evident to all who meet her. Her formation in a religious tradition that stresses the unconditional love of God for all people as well as the many paradoxes of our human journey, will serve her well in this new role.” The National LGBTQ Task Force advances full freedom, justice & equality for LGBTQ people. For More Info…

NYC Pride & Tribeca LGBTQ Film Event

NYC Pride in partnership with Tribeca have announced Pride Presents a unique cinematic event celebrating LGBTQ+ film during Pride. This year’s feature film “Disclosure” will make its film festival debut on the East Coast at Spring Studios on June 17th at 7P EDT. Samantha Marie Johnson, Senior Manager for Pride Presents stated, “After being away for several years, it is with great pleasure that we bring our Film Festival back to this year’s Pride events fully in-person with Disclosure, introduced by Laverne Cox, as our feature film. By providing limited free registration for this year’s Pride Presents, we are creating a space for community while making these important stories accessible to a new audience.” Lucy Mukerjee, Senior Programmer, Tribeca Festival concluded, “This year’s Pride Presents event is an opportunity for NYC Pride and Tribeca to join forces with Laverne Cox & the Disclosure team to engage the NYC community in the urgent matter of protecting & prioritizing the dignity, safety & wellbeing of trans people across the nation.” “Disclosure” is a documentary that takes an in depth look at transgender depictions in film & television revealing how Hollywood simultaneously reflects & manufactures our deepest anxieties about gender. Leading trans thinkers & creatives like Laverne Cox, Lilly Wachowski, Yance Ford, Mj Rodriguez, Jamie Clayton & Chaz Bono share their reactions & resistance to some of Hollywood’s most beloved moments. Two short films will also be screened at this free event “Beautiful They” & “Leaf Boa”. Heritage of Pride, Inc. is the volunteer-directed organization behind the official NYC Pride roster of events that inspire, educate, commemorate & celebrate our diverse community. For More Info… 

Film: 100 Years Of Men In Love (AUDIO)


This week I talked with Emmy winning actor-producer David Millbern about his fabulous must-see documentary “100 Years Of Men In Love: The Accidental Collection”. The film focuses on Hugh Nini & Neal Treadwell’s extensive collection of vintage photographs of men in love from 1859 to 1959. They accumulated their vintage photos over the years from flea markets, family archives & estate sales across the country. The film captures a time period when male partnerships were illegal so the poses were often subtle but still a bold statement of their bonds. It’s also a history of photography from professional portraits created on tintypes to amateur snapshots taken by these brave gay couples who wanted to capture their relationships in this new medium regardless of the possible consequences. Millbern was attracted to this subject matter after discovering an old tintype of his great uncles that he has now framed & proudly displays in his home. The project was a huge undertaking for David chronicling Nini & Treadwell’s massive collection of over 3700 photos into an hour-long moving documentary that reflects our LGBTQ community’s history of loving relationships spanning over 10 decades. It’s crucial for all generations from all races & sexualities to see this fascinating film to further understand that our LGBTQ community has always existed & that love is universal. Set to music with narration by Millbern & with interviews by the curators of the collection Hugh Nini & Neal Treadwell, “100 Years Of Men In Love” was produced by William Clift, Paul Colichman & Millbern & is currently available on HERE-TV. I talked to David about his inspiration for creating this film & his spin on our LGBTQ issues. LISTEN:  

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Colorado & LGBTQ Conversion Therapy

The Alana Faith Chen Foundation, Born Perfect a program of NCLR & Out Boulder County are presenting a special event on Sunday April 24th to honor the life of Alana Chen who died by suicide after suffering years of conversion therapy. In 2019 a limited ban on conversion therapy took effect in Colorado but the ban only applies to youth under the age of 18 & does not include pastoral counseling leaving LGBTQ people vulnerable to this practice that can be deadly as it was for Alana Faith Chen. Mardi Moore, Executive Director of Out Boulder County stated, “Conversion therapy does not change who LGBTQ people are or who they love. It tries to teach LGBTQ people to be ashamed of those things. It is a deadly practice & especially deadly for LGBTQ youth. This idea for this program came from Joyce Calvo, Alana Faith Chen’s mother. Joyce asked Out Boulder County to help her protect other people from experiencing what her daughter did.” The event will begin at Out Boulder County’s office at 3340 Mitchell Lane, Boulder, Colorado at 3P with an opening reception followed by a panel that will be facilitated by Nicole Garcia, Faith Leader & Out Boulder County Board member & will feature Joyce Calvo, Jessica Ritter, Mathew Shurka & Christopher Dowling. Then at 5P there will be a vigil outside of St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Center at 1520 Euclid Avenue in Boulder. Conversion Therapy continues to be a life threatening practice for LGBTQ people in Colorado. For More Info…

Ahead Of The Curve Virtual Film Event

Docs In Progress is presenting the fabulous feature documentary “Ahead Of The Curve” for their next installment of the Silver Screen Series. There will be a live Q&A with the filmmakers Jen Rainin & Rivkah Beth on Monday May 2nd at 7:30P to 10P EST via Zoom. “Ahead Of The Curve”was co-produced & co-directed by Jen Rainin & Rivkah Beth Medow. The film is based on the true story of Franco Stevens the founding publisher of Curve Magazine the iconic international lesbian lifestyle publication. Ahead Of The Curve traces the power of lesbian visibility & community from the early ‘90s to present day through the story of Franco’s founding of Curve magazine. Decades later in the wake of a disabling injury Franco learns that Curve will fold within the year & questions the relevance of the magazine in the face of accelerating threats to our LGBTQ+ community. To forge a path forward Franco reaches out to women working in today’s queer spaces to understand what queer women need today & how Curve can continue to serve the community. The award-winning documentary features Melissa Etheridge, Lea DeLaria, Jewelle Gomez & Franco Stevens. The Silver Screen Series is intended as a gathering place where documentary films can be shown & shared. The documentary will be available to watch beginning Thursday April 28th through Tuesday May 3rd once you register for this free event. To Register…  I talked to Jen Rainin & Franco Stevens in 2021 about what they hope to accomplish with “Ahead Of The Curve” in this exclusive chat. LISTEN

Alabama Emergency Court Order Filed


Alabama parents have been joined by a minister & medical providers to seek an emergency court order to block SB 184 the law that will criminalize their transgender children’s ongoing medical care. SB 184 punishes parents & their children’s doctors for providing or even suggesting well-established essential medical care for their transgender children. The punishment can include up to 10 years in prison taking effect May 8th. The two medical providers are proceeding anonymously due to the risk of criminal prosecution. Reverend Eknes-Tucker v. Ivey filed the new legal challenge in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Alabama - Northern Division because the plaintiffs face criminal penalties & a dangerous loss of necessary medical care for their children under SB 184 they asked the court to block the law from going into effect while their case against it proceeds. Reverend Paul Eknes-Tucker who has served as Senior Pastor at historic Pilgrim Church UCC since 2015 stated, "As a minister, I counsel parents with transgender children about how best to love & support their children. Under SB 184, those conversations now come with a risk of criminal prosecution. This dangerous law is an unthinkable infringement on parental rights & the freedom of pastors & other faith leaders to counsel their own parishioners. This law is destructive not only to families in Alabama, but to the freedoms & values Alabamians hold dear.” Asaf Orr NCLR Senior Staff Attorney & Transgender Youth Project Director concluded, “Allowing SB 184 to go into effect will cause enormous stress & harm to families across Alabama. A state should not criminalize parents & doctors for following medical guidelines & providing needed medical treatments.” For More Info…

Magic Johnson Changing Hearts & Minds


NBA legend Magic Johnson promoting his new docuseries “They Call Me Magic” on Apple TV+ talked about how his son EJ’s coming out changed his life on Daily Blast Live. Magic Johnson stated, “We grow up wanting our kids to be what we want them to be, right & so when that world changed, that he didn't become an athlete or he didn't become what I thought he should be. Then it was on me, not on him & so I had to change. I had to accept who EJ wanted to be & I had to love him for him. And I'm glad that he did change me & that he is such an incredible individual & doing some amazing things. And what really got to me was all the letters & emails that he has received around the world, how many lives he has changed & saved. He has been responsible for letting other kids be themselves as well as tell their parents that they wanted to come out to them because a lot of people wrote him & said I was struggling with that until you came out & I see how you just love being you that allowed them to love themselves & become a person who they wanted to become. EJ he is wonderful & he's doing a lot in the gay community as well & doing great things.” It’s so refreshing to have a positive spin on being your authentic self from a legendary role model. Especially since our LGBTQ community is facing over 300 anti-LGBTQ bills advancing in legislatures across the country surpassing 2021which was the worst year on record for introducing & enacting anti-LGBTQ legislation in statehouses across the country.

New Report On LGBTQ School Inclusion


The Human Rights Campaign Foundation inaugural Welcoming Schools Annual Report exhibits marked growth & expanded equitable access to virtual PreK-12 training opportunities for educators across the country & internationally. Cheryl Greene, Human Rights Campaign Foundation Welcoming Schools Director stated, “As educators across the country are facing unprecedented challenges with both the pandemic & the relentless cascade of anti-LGBTQ+ bills that target students, parents & educators, this inaugural Welcoming Schools report flips the script to highlight nationwide accomplishments & what an inclusive educational environment truly looks like. Since its inception as a local community effort, the Welcoming Schools program has grown into a nation-wide program committed to affirming LGBTQ+ youth & children in Pre-K-12 schools across the United States, impacting over 10.5 million students. Our work to amplify the voices of inclusive educators & administrators to center the needs of our most marginalized students continues to grow & makes schools everywhere a more safe and welcoming space for all.” Creating a more LGBTQ inclusive environment in schools is imperative given the onslaught of attacks from state legislatures across this country. Especially with states like Texas who has tried to criminalize transition care for minors & recently in Alabama enacted the nation’s first bill to impose criminal penalties on providers of age-appropriate, medically necessary, gender-affirming care for transgender youth. No pun intended, not to mention Florida’s “Don’t Say Gay or Trans” bill stands to block teachers from talking about LGBTQ issues or people further stigmatizing LGBTQ people & isolating LGBTQ kids. Though lawsuits have been filed in these states the attempts to erase our LGBTQ community continues. For More Info…

Out Film CT Receives Cultural Grant


Out Film CT has been awarded an $8,300 CT Cultural Fund Operating Support Grant by Connecticut Humanities (CTH). The statewide nonprofit affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) is part of a mission to help Connecticut humanities & arts nonprofits recover & thrive after the COVID-19 pandemic. Out Film CT will use the funding from Connecticut Humanities to help bring the historic 35th year of the Connecticut LGBTQ Film Festival to life. Since 1988 the film festival has provided a safe space for the LGBTQ community to come together to see their lives on the big screen. This year’s 10-day festival will be a hybrid event running June 3rd to 12th. In person screenings will take place primarily at Cinestudio on the campus of Trinity College in Hartford. Virtual screenings will be available online at OutFilmCT.org throughout the duration of the festival. Jaime Ortega Festival Co-Director stated, “During a year when some of our traditional funding sources were disrupted due to COVID & other factors, Connecticut Humanities stepped in to fill the gap, allowing us to celebrate the art of film & share the diverse stories of the LGBTQ+ community.” Out Film CT’s mission is to entertain, educate & promote community through the exhibition of LGBTQ film. A volunteer nonprofit cultural organization Out Film CT is dedicated to presenting outstanding LGBTQ cinema & other theatrical events throughout the year culminating in the 10-day Connecticut LGBTQ Film Festival. Out Film CT also presents their monthly Queer Thursdays film series in partnership with Cinestudio usually shown on the second Thursday of each month. For More Info…

Trans Bodies Trans Selves 2nd Edition


The Trans Bodies, Trans Selves board has released the second edition of Trans Bodies, Trans Selves that is 50 pages longer than the first, & includes thousands of new contributors with an emphasis on uplifting BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, people of color) trans voices. They’ve updated the original 25 chapters with new material from over 250 trans subject-matter experts, new art, brand new first-person narratives from a survey of over 2,000 trans voices with a foreword written by Kai Cheng Thom & an afterward written by Jennifer Finney Boylan. The second edition is more timely than ever as more than 220 anti-trans state laws have been proposed since 2021 limiting healthcare, public space & athletics access for millions of trans people. The new edition includes extensive new material on trans youth & adolescents. Kelsey Pacha, President, Trans Bodies, Trans Selves board stated, “This new edition of ‘Trans Bodies Trans Selves’ could not come at a better time. As we see the trans & non-binary communities under attack, from anti-trans legislation to the continuing epidemic of violence, particularly targeting trans people of color, this updated resource is more important than ever for parents, families, advocates, journalists & most importantly, trans & non-binary people. Trans Bodies Trans Selves is not just about information, it is about seeing ourselves, telling our stories and creating community.” The new edition of TBTS reflects the enormous increase of trans media representation, social awareness about gender expansive people & changes in legal protections. This information is vital now more than ever especially for physicians, therapists, teachers & parents of trans & gender expansive youth. For More Info…

Spectrum LGBTQ Film Festival 6th Year

The Spectrum Film Festival is a 3-day film festival that presents a world perspective on our LGBTQ stories, people & issues through a variety of films & includes guest speakers, discussions & a special event for LGBTQ youth. It’s presented by the Martha’s Vineyard Film Society & runs May 6th to 8th in Vineyard Haven, Massachusetts. It’s the first & only festival of its kind on the Vineyard & adds to the Film Society’s consistent efforts to broach subject matter not usually covered by major Hollywood motion pictures. The Festival draws moviegoers from Cape Cod & the Islands as well as the greater Boston area & beyond. Following the theme implied by the name of the festival “Spectrum” presents a prism of wide-ranging films that originate from various countries covering LGBTQ story-lines & combine comedy, drama, romance & documentary genres. This year a few films that are being presented are “I Carry You With Me” based on true love this decades-spanning romance begins in Mexico between an aspiring chef (Armando Espitia) & a teacher (Christian Vázquez). Their lives restart in incredible ways as societal pressure propels them to embark on a treacherous journey to NYC with dreams, hopes, and memories in tow. Also being shown is “Sublet” depicts a romance that reaches across the generation gap & into the viewer’s heart & more. You can get individual tickets or purchase an all access pass. This pass gets you access to all six films playing in person in their theater from May 6th to May 8th with some films available virtually. For Info & Tix…

Trans Southerners Pandemic Harms

A new survey explores economic, health & social consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic on LGBTQ people in the South with focus on transgender & non-binary Southerners. It’s based on survey responses from nearly 3,000 LGBTQ people in Southern states & is led by Gender Benders & Rooted Resistance with support from Kenyon College & the Campaign for Southern Equality’s Southern Equality Research & Policy Center. Austin Johnson, PhD, Research Director at Gender Benders stated, “This research shows how early pandemic setbacks put Southern trans women at a disproportionate disadvantage in terms of their physical health & mental well-being. As this crisis continues & our country begins to take stock of the long-term effects of the pandemic, with organizations developing resources to offset its negative impacts, we must always do so with this vulnerable population front and center. Organizations, policy makers, advocates & elected officials must ask themselves & each other, ‘How can we better address the needs of transgender women in the South?’ Solutions that care for transgender women will lift people across demographics & fuel more equitable policy.” Key findings of their report included that LGBTQ Southerners across the board report a decline in physical health & an increase in stress. The impact was greater for trans & non-binary participants who were more likely to report a disruption in healthcare or an inability to access necessary prescription medications. Nearly 20% of trans men, trans women & non-binary people report an affect on their access to care, double the rate of cisgender participants. Read Report…

Alabama Transgender Bill Challenged

A suit was filed in federal court after Alabama Governor Ivey signed Anti-Transgender Bill SB 184. The plaintiffs are represented by the Southern Poverty Law Center, GLBTQ Legal Advocates & Defenders, the National Center for Lesbian Rights & the Human Rights Campaign with King & Spalding LLP & Lightfoot, Franklin & White LLC. The hateful bill punishes parents for making important decisions about their children’s healthcare & doctors for providing or even suggesting well-established medically necessary care with punishment up to 10 years in prison. Dr. Morissa Ladinsky stated, “By signing SB 184 Governor Ivey has told kind, loving & loyal Alabama families that they cannot stay here without denying their children the basic medical care they need. She has undermined the health & well-being of Alabama children & put doctors like me in the horrifying position of choosing between ignoring the medical needs of our patients or risking being sent to prison.” The Alabama family plaintiffs include Robert Roe & his 13-year-old transgender daughter Mary of Jefferson County & remaining anonymously Jane Doe & her 17-year-old-transgender son John of Shelby County. These families have deep ties to Alabama & if SB 184 is allowed to go into effect both families will be forced to choose between leaving the state, breaking the law or facing devastating consequences to their children’s health. Asaf Orr NCLR Senior Staff Attorney & Transgender Youth Project Director concluded, “A state cannot criminalize parents & doctors for following medical guidelines & providing needed medical treatments. This is an unconstitutional bill that will cause enormous stress & harm to families. A federal court immediately stopped enforcement of a similar law in Arkansas last year & we aim to obtain the same result here.” For More Info…

Bring Brittney Griner Home (AUDIO)

It’s been over 50 days since WNBA star Brittney Griner’s was arrested in Russia. Kicking off the WNBA league draft WNBA commissioner Cathy Engelbert expressed her concern about Phoenix Mercury player Brittney Griner detainment saying it is doing all it can to bring her home. Engelbert stated, "Obviously we’re getting a ton of support from the government, from specialists & her representation is able to visit with Brittney. We know she’s safe, but we want to get her home. So it’s just a very complex situation right now & we’re following the advice. There’s not a day that goes by that we’re not talking to someone that has views on what we’re doing & how we’re moving forward." Griner was arrested for allegedly possessing cartridges containing liquid with hashish oil according to the customs service. She is currently facing charges that could carry a sentence of up to 10 years in prison. She is being held without trial until at least May 19th. The US embassy in Moscow was granted consular access last month to check on her condition & they reported she is being held with two other first time detainees & in good condition. Of course we all fear that Griner is being used as a political pawn especially with Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine. Then there's the gender issue. We can’t help think that if this happened to a high profile male professional basketball player like Kyrie Irving or Stephen Curry it would be an entirely different situation. It’s also extremely concerning with Russia’s notorious treatment of our LGBTQ community when Brittney will be safely returned to the United States & her wife. In this exclusive chat I talked to Aron Solomon chief legal analyst at Esquire Digital about Griner’s detainment in Russia. LISTEN 

 

Anti-Trans Discrimination Bills (AUDIO)

This week I talked with human rights activist Amberlyn Boiter about the South Carolina House passing H.4608 a bill that seeks to restrict transgender students in middle school, high school & college from participating in school athletics. The bill is now awaiting discussion on the South Carolina Senate floor. This year marks the first time in years that explicitly anti-LGBTQ legislation has passed a full chamber in South Carolina. This is not the only state to consider or pass harmful legislation against our LGBTQ community. So far in 2022 legislative session dozens of states are considering similar legislation related to LGBTQ discrimination including Florida that passed House Bill 1557 known as the “Don’t Say Gay” law & Alabama’s governor has signed a bill criminalizing transgender health care for minors. The Alabama bill could put doctors in prison for up to 10 years for prescribing puberty blockers or hormonal treatment to trans kids under 19. It is crucial that our LGBTQ community & straight allies speak out against these horrific hateful bills & call out the hypocrisy of anti-transgender legislators. Already in Florida legal action has been filed challenging the “Don’t Say Gay” law. In his State Of The Union President Biden stated, “The onslaught of state laws targeting transgender Americans & their families is simply wrong.” More affirmative action is needed & The Equality Act must be passed. I talked to Amberlyn about what action needs to happen to make this country safe for our transgender community & her spin on our LGBTQ issues. LISTEN  

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Jason Stuart Best Actor Indie Awards

Congratulations to Jason Stuart who won Best Actor In A Comedy for the Amazon series “Smothered” at the Indie Series Awards. Jason who been in close to 160 film & TV shows stated, "I have had a long winding career with lots of ups & downs. When I was a kid growing up I never thought that a gay man could win an award from his piers for playing a gay man! ...All I ever really wanted was to be a character actor." He also thanked his mother for her love & support & his co creator Mitch Hara who he co starred, co wrote & co produced the comedy series with. The 1st season of “Smothered” is available on Amazon, Revry, YouTube, Apple TV & more. "Smothered" is a fabulous must-see comedy series that brings much needed comedic relief with a 30-minute binge session of 7, 5-minute episodes of outrageous, irreverent & laugh out loud bliss. The series is about a longtime gay couple that cannot stand each other but can’t afford to get divorced. They decide to try & save their relationship by navigating their way through couple’s therapy. As the series unfolds through their uninhibited & often shocking therapy sessions viewers discover just how dysfunctional the couple of 20 years are as they outrageously nit-pick & push each other’s buttons. They're currently shooting season 2 with guest stars Amanda Bearse, Jai Rodriguez, Aida Rodriguez, Armand Fields, Jasper Cole & more. I talked to Jason & Mitch in 2020 about what they hope to accomplish with this hysterical comedy series & their spin on our LGBTQ issues in this exclusive audio chat. LISTEN  

Rocky Mountains LGBTQ Equality Center

The grand opening of Out Boulder County’s Equality Center of the Rocky Mountains takes place on Friday April 8th at 3340 Mitchell Lane in Boulder, Colorado with more than 350 community members, business leaders & elected officials coming together to mark this milestone event. Mardi Moore, Executive Director of Out Boulder County stated, “The opening of the Equality Center of the Rocky Mountains opens infinite possibilities for the LGBTQ community in Boulder & beyond. It is the culmination of years of effort by community members & leaders. This grand opening & the increased programming & services that will be housed in the Center shows LGBTQ people that Out Boulder County has their backs & will stand with them.” Governor Jared Polis, Congressman Joe Neguse, Scott Beard, advisory board member of the Colorado LGBTQ Chamber & John Tayer, President & CEO of the Boulder Chamber will be speaking. Many other elected officials & candidates are planning to attend. Representatives from One Colorado & other community organizations will also be in attendance. Bryn Long, President of the Board of Directors of Out Boulder County concluded, “We are deeply grateful to Governor Polis, the other elected officials & business & community leaders who are attending the grand opening to show their support of Out Boulder County & LGBTQ people. The Equality Center of the Rocky Mountains will allow us to grow our current programs & services as well as create new ones to meet the evolving needs of the community. This is a major milestone for Out Boulder County & the LGBTQ communities in Boulder County & surrounding areas.” For More Info…

LGBTQ Film Festivals Coast To Coast

On the east coast Boston’s Wicked Queer Film Festival returns in person & virtual from April 7th to 17th after being virtual only for two years & then OUTshine LGBTQ+ Film Festival Miami is back, bolder, brighter & in-person beginning April 22nd through May 1st. Then on the west coast Outfest Fusion QTBIPOC Film Festival runs from April 8th to 17th with ten days of in-person & virtual screenings & events that showcase the work of today’s leading storytellers. At Outfest Fusion attendees can also participate in nearly a dozen free community workshops, industry master classes, a One Minute Movie Contest, pitch competitions & live performances. The mission of Outfest Fusion is not only to amplify these voices but also to provide access & resources specific to the needs of the QTBIPOC community. The programming at Outfest Fusion exists to directly close & challenge the systemic access gap for LGBTQ+ people of color. At Outfest Fusion they’re opening the 2022 festival on April 8th at the Japanese American Cultural & Community Center with a special awards presentation honoring Stephanie Beatriz (Encanto, Brooklyn Nine-Nine) with the Fusion Achievement Award & Sandra Oh (Killing Eve, The Chair, Umma) with the James Schamus Ally Award starting at 7:30P. This is only the beginning of the night as they screen a range of short films showcasing the caliber of Outfest Fusion talent. After the screening there will be an after party in the fabulous courtyard of the JACCC for a late-night bash to remember. Tickets are $35. For More Info…

Georgia Sneaks In Transgender Kids Ban

In the wee hours of the morning Georgia Lawmakers sneaked through legislation allowing discrimination against Transgender kids ability to playing school sports. Georgia House Bill 1084 is legislation that creates an athletics committee with the authority to ban transgender youth from playing on sports teams aligning with their gender identity. Cathyrn Oakley, HRC’s State Legislative Director & Senior Counsel stated, “Everything about this legislation & the way it was passed demonstrates an intent by Gov. Brian Kemp & Republican legislative leaders to evade accountability for hurting Georgia’s transgender youth. By amending this bill on the last day of the session to focus on transgender students, they prevented the people actually impacted from speaking out as to why this is wrong. By passing it after midnight, they evaded immediate scrutiny for taking a shameful vote & by punting the decision to a newly created athletics committee, they get to pretend their hands are clean once specific, discriminatory policies are put into place. Make no mistake — there is no crisis with transgender youth playing sports in Georgia. Decades of experience in states across the country shows that this is a non-issue. Self-serving politicians, catering to an extreme portion of their party’s base, are demonstrating that they’re willing to harm vulnerable kids who just want to play with their friends. If Governor Kemp signs this bill, he will be marking himself once again as someone willing to harm a vulnerable LGBTQ+ population — in this case, children — to serve his own political ambitions.” This comes as a similar Utah bill was vetoed by Republican Governor Spencer Cox & Republican Governor Eric Holcomb of Indiana vetoed a bill discriminating against transgender kids playing sports last month citing a lack of evidence to justify the bill. For More Info…

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