The California Legislature passed a resolution condemning the Trump administration’s ban on service in the military by transgender individuals and called on the governor of California to direct the California National Guard to take no action that discriminates against transgender service members on the basis of their gender identity or expression, unless superseded by federal law. The legislature also approved a bill that would make it easier to change gender markers on state-issued identification documents as well as create a gender-neutral, non-binary category in addition to “male” and “female.” Senate Bill (SB) 179 would make California the second state in the country, after Oregon, to legally recognize a non-binary gender. Additionally, the legislature approved a bill that would help ensure that transgender individuals are recognized for who they are while incarcerated and would increase their likelihood of successful re-entry into society on release. Senate Bill (SB) 310 would require corrections officials to use the new name of a transgender person who obtains a name change, and to list the prior name only as an alias. And, the legislature approved a bill that would create a “bill of rights” for LGBTQ seniors in long-term care. Senate Bill (SB) 219 would help protect seniors from discrimination or mistreatment in long-term care facilities and provide standards for culturally-competent care.
The Equality Forum’s 25th anniversary celebration will be held on Oct. 1 at the National Museum of American Jewish History in Philadelphia, Pa.
Independent Pop/EDM musician Joey Suarez announced that he is donating all the proceeds from his singles “Love Me Back” and “High in the Sky” to aid victims of both Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma for the entire month of September. It is available on iTunes. In addition to helping citizens of South Florida and Houston, Suarez will donate a percentage of proceeds to local organizations in each city helping with animal aid and rescue.
A $1 million fund to help HIV organizations impacted by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma was announced at the opening of the 21st annual U.S. Conference on AIDS in Washington, D.C. on Sept. 7. The $1 million is being donated by Gilead Sciences. In addition to the $1 million donation by Gilead Sciences, AIDS United has allocated $150,000 from the Southern HIV Impact Fund. AIDS United released a request for applications for organizations in the affected communities. The awards will be made on a rolling basis.
info: nmac.org. aidsunited.org.
The Treatment Action Group will hold its 2017 Research in Action Awards fundraising event on Nov. 16 in New York.
In a milestone for transgender people of color representation in U.S. HIV/AIDS advocacy work, Transgender Law Center’s Positively Trans program was at the United States Conference on AIDS earlier in September in Washington, D.C. Through workshops and tableing at the exhibition hall, Positively Trans, a program run by and for transgender people living with HIV, showcased the work of over a dozen transgender advocates from across the country.
Equality Florida announced the launch of its HIV Advocacy Project, a new statewide initiative to combat the spread of HIV across the state.
On Oct. 8, Rowman & Littlefield is publishing “Stonewall Strong: Gay Men’s Heroic Fight for Resilience, Good Health, and a Strong Community” by health journalist John-Manuel Andriote. Andriote has reported on HIV/AIDS and other health and medical subjects for more than 30 years, and has been open about his own 2005 HIV diagnosis since disclosing his status in a 2006 Washington Post article and NPR interview.
During New York Fashion Week, Logo, VH1 and MTV celebrated diversity and the models who transformed the runway in the new feature “Made to Model: Trans Beauty in Fashion,” a long-form digital original that aired exclusively on LogoTV’s website. Included talent were: Carmen Carrera, Crimsona Kaiser (also known as Crimsona R. Amistad), Geena Rocero, Lauren Foster, Leyna Ramous (also known as Leyna Bloom), Maya Monès, Rain Dove, Torraine Futurum and Tracey Africa Norman.
The Hollywood Reporter posted a story that said that Donald Trump is the most anti-LGBTQ president in U.S. history.
Lambda Literary has announced the opening of the submissions period for the annual Lambda Literary Awards (Lammys). Entering their 30th year, the Lammys honor books in more than 20 genres ranging from literary fiction and poetry to speculative fiction, graphic novels and memoir. Deadline is Dec. 1.
Tidal is celebrating Latinx Heritage Month with the help of the LGBTQ community in support of inclusiveness.
Charlottesville, Va.’s 6th Annual Cville Pride Festival was met with conflict in getting its hat order when a supplier refused to fill an order saying it was due to the controversial nature of the LGBTQ community, GayRVA reported. Red Star Merchandise normally fulfills the specialty items, but outsourced the hat order to Legacy Athletic in Pennsylvania. Legacy replied to Red Star saying, “While Legacy does offer custom logos, we also carefully nurture and protect our brand. One of the ways we keep a positive connotation to the brand, is by avoiding doing any products with custom logos that might be deemed as controversial, political, offensive, etc. This does not in any way mean that we either support or do not support the organization making the request, but the reality is that in light of recent events in Charlottesville as well as the fact Gay Pride events are political activism; we respectfully decline this order. Again, I hope you can understand our position.” Legacy responded to GayRVA request. They also said, “Regarding our decision not to produce hats for the 2017 Cville Pride Festival, we want to emphasize Legacy is neither anti-gay nor discriminatory in any way. Nothing could be further from the truth. Our company is primarily a college and resort apparel brand. As our company’s popularity has grown, we continue to receive requests from all sorts of clubs, organizations and event planners with requests for put their logos on our branded apparel. We are working on new guidelines and policies to help us manage this influx of requests. Those guidelines and brand standards will ensure we stay committed to our core customer base of college and resort apparel. As a company, our policy is to not take orders that might be deemed controversial or political in nature. That doesn’t mean we agree or disagree with the organization’s mission, but that we simply want to remain neutral in all situations.”
Bilingual and multi-lingual Southerners on New Ground members will be able to sign up for Interpreting for Social Justice Training being held from Oct. 12-15 in Faber, Va. It is for those who are interested in sharpening their interpreting skills, building a language justice analysis and connecting with other individuals across the Southern region.
NLGJA – The Association of LGBTQ Journalists has announced that two new inductees, The Lesbian News founding publisher Jinx Beers and award-winning journalist, author, TV personality and activist Dan Savage, were enrolled in the LGBTQ Journalists Hall of Fame on Sept. 9 at the association’s annual National Convention.
New York Comic Con will present “Queer Culture: LGBTQ Presence in Pop Culture” on Oct. 6.
Lambda Archives of San Diego’s 30th-anniversary gala speaker was intersex activist Hida Viloria. Viloria is a queer Latinx American activist, author and founding director of the Intersex Campaign for Equality and second American to receive a birth certificate stating s/he is intersex.
Equality Vodka has launched in Southern California to help progress the rights of LGBTQ communities. It will donate a portion of profits from every bottle sold in the California market to the Los Angeles LGBT Center, to help fund the programs and services it provides to the LGBTQ community.
Gay social network Hornet introduced Community, the first platform for LGBTQ social networks where users will be able to become community contributors whose roles include: an ambassador on behalf of their city, directly affecting curation and local translation of content, a moderator helping improve the app ecosystem, a writer sharing meaningful stories and the chance to beta test upcoming features.
The Miss Gay America pageant will be held from Oct. 4-7 in New Orleans, La.
Southerners on New Ground (SONG) had hired three new staff members: Alan Ramirez and Monserrat “Monse” Ramirez Perez, bilingual regional organizers, and Jaison A. Gardner, regional organizer.
Lambda Legal and OutServe-SLDN asked a federal court to immediately halt all steps taken to implement the Trump administration’s discriminatory plan to ban transgender individuals from serving openly in the U.S. Armed Services, saying that the ban already was harming transgender troops and the U.S. military.
info: outserve.org. lambdalegal.org.
Logo announced that award-winning writer Michael Musto will join the network’s digital site NewNowNext as a weekly columnist. Titled “Musto Unfiltered,” the weekly column will bring readers a regular taste of Musto’s humorist take on the personalities, issues and gossip affecting the LGBTQ community.
Napo Pharmaceuticals, Inc. announced the results of a survey of 271 U.S. board-certified gastroenterologists, which indicate that the number one gastrointestinal complaint for people living with HIV/AIDS is diarrhea. The study was conducted for Napo by Schlesinger Associates. Data showed that 93 percent of U.S. gastroenterologists see patients with HIV/AIDS in their practice; 84 percent rank diarrhea in the top three complaints of HIV/AIDS patients; 53 percent indicated diarrhea is the number one complaint in HIV/AIDS patients; and 65 percent of diarrhea in HIV/AIDS patients is chronic.
Christin Baker, owner of tello Films, released the first of the final two episodes of her lesbian-focused web-series “Riley Parra” on Sept. 17, with the finale slated for Sept. 24.
On Nov. 7 the Elton John AIDS Foundation will host its annual New York Fall Gala at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City. This year’s gala commemorates the foundation’s 25th year and honors Founder Sir Elton John. President Bill Clinton, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo, Sharon Stone and others will pay tribute to John’s achievements as a philanthropist and humanitarian. Aretha Franklin will be the special musical guest, along with performances by violinist Joshua Bell and Broadway’s “The Lion King,” featuring Heather Headley. Neil Patrick Harris will host the event.
Nearly 70,000 LGBTQ individuals in Idaho, Montana and Wyoming lack state-level protections from discrimination and are vulnerable to discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, The Williams Institute reported.
GayRVA reported that the West Point Association of Graduates correctly identified a transgender graduate’s chosen name and gender.
Through the generous support of Janssen Therapeutics, a division of Janssen Products, LP, eight organizations in six states, D.C. and Puerto Rico were awarded AIDS United’s first-ever demonstration grants to increase transgender leadership within organizations, in community planning bodies and in local networks to aid the response to HIV.
Upon receiving his Emmy Award in the Outstanding Host for a Reality or Reality-Competition Program category, RuPaul Charles stated, “I am beyond grateful to the Television Academy for giving love to our show again this year. Providing an international platform for 113 outrageous, courageous and talented queens has been the greatest reward of all. None of this would be possible it weren’t for the incredible cast and crew of ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race,’ and my partners at World of Wonder and VH1.”
In the fourth generation of Jack’d, the ability to take screenshots of anything on the app has been disabled. This latest innovation is the latest safety precaution Jack’d is taking in its ongoing efforts to increase user safety and privacy.
The Georgia Voice reported that Atlanta Police Chief Erika Shields reassigned a watch commander who forced four gay bars to close early over Labor Day weekend’s Black Gay Pride.
A live five-session webinar series, “Love and Sex for Gay Men,” will begin on Sept. 26 and is designed to help gay men navigate the path to connection with other men with greater ease and confidence, and armed with practical skills. This five-week series will cover Finding a Boyfriend; Communicating about Sex; Developing Self-Esteem and Confidence; Maintaining a Relationship; and Open Relationships and Monogamy. It is offered by the Gay Therapy Center. Registration and fee payment is required prior to the start of the series.
The National Society of Genetic Counselors shared that transgender individuals should be aware of their family history of cancer or any cancer-related gene mutations that run in their family, as these factors may influence their choices regarding hormone treatment and gender-confirmation surgery, according to genetic counselors from Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston, Mass.
info: pcipr.com. nsgc.org.
Vitit Muntarbhorn, an international law professor from Thailand and the first-ever United Nations Independent Expert on protection against violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, has resigned effective Oct. 31, the Human Rights Campaign shared.
Atlanta’s Spelman College announced that it is opening its doors to transgender female students, Patch reported.
Refinery29 reported that an American University study shed light on how “double discrimination” from both straight and LGBTQ communities affects bisexuals’ mental health.
The Miami police now has an out 21-year-old public information officer, Christopher Bess.