Soulforce will present a 60-minute digital self-defense webinar class entitled “Biblical Literalism: Self-Defense Class for Bible-Based Attacks” to wrestle with the conversation of “biblical literalism and weaponized scripture” on Feb.12, 7 p.m. All registrants will also receive a digital copy of Soulforce’s newest theological resource, “Breaking Open: Biblical Literalism & Inerrancy,” and a copy of the recorded webinar via email after the call. Registration is required.
The American Military Partner Association condemned a Republican National Committee vote passing a resolution backing Donald Trump’s attempt to kick transgender service members out of the military and block qualified transgender recruits from entering the military. The resolution states the military should consider transgender people as having “a disqualifying psychological and physical condition.”
The National Coalition for LGBT Health is concerned that Congress has failed to re-authorize vital health programs, including the Community Health Center Fund, the Prevention and Public Health Fund, the Teaching Health Center Graduate Medical Education Program, the National Health Services Corps, funding to combat the opioid crisis and Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals. In its previous short-term spending bill, Congress did not reauthorize these programs, leaving invaluable healthcare programs in flux for the LGBTQ community.
The Gangway, the oldest continuously operating gay bar in San Francisco, Calif., announced that it was shuttering its establishment located in the Castro district. In light of that, some community members have posed the question of whether places of historical significance to the LGBTQ culture should be protected.
Equality California announced its endorsement of Gavin Newsom for California governor. Newsom is currently California’s lieutenant governor and previously served as the mayor of San Francisco.
The Salvation Army has opened a homeless shelter for LGBT people in Winnipeg, Canada, LGBTQ Nation reported. In separate quarters in an existing shelter which had been used to house American refugees from the Trump administration, the one-year pilot program will consist of 15 rooms and a common lounge area. This is a departure from what has been viewed as an organization with an anti-LGBTQ stance.
Gay Legal Advocates and Defenders (GLAD) has unveiled their black LGBTQ icons in honor of Black History Month.
GLMA will hold its 36th annual Conference on LGBTQ Health in Las Vegas, Nev. from Oct. 10-13 and is seeking abstracts for workshops and research presentations which address LGBTQ health issues. Deadline is March 2. Theme this year is “Mind, Body, Spirit, and Policy: Holistic Approaches to LGBTQ Healthcare.”
MadAboutWorld has released three innovative digital initiatives to address the critical nature of LGBTQ travel safety in the form of a guide, an online presence to query location safety in partnership with OutRight Action International and twice-yearly Twitter Chats on LGBTQ travel safety in partnership with the U.S. State Department and other partners.
The Victory Institute has announced that their 2018 internship and fellowship programs application season is open. In other news, Charlotte, N.C. City Councilmember LaWana Mayfield visited the organization’s new headquarters during her time there as a board member of the National Black Caucus of Local Elected Officials. A Facebook livestream was recorded in which she talks about the caucus’ work and the initiatives to protect affordable housing.
info: victoryinstitute.org. bit.ly/2GMLsyw.
The Treatment Action Group has released an updated Training Manual for Treatment Activists: Hepatitis C and HIV Coinfection.
Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies, in collaboration with Aegon Center for Longevity and Retirement, has released a new study, “LGBT: Retirement Preparations Amid Social Progress” which unveils retirement preparations among the LGBTQ workforce based on a survey fielded in Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain, the United Kingdom and the U.S. It is based on findings from a survey of 900 LGBTQ workers and retirees who self-identified as lesbian, gay, bisexual, other, or “not sure” to a sexual orientation question, and/or self-identified as transgender or “do not identify as male, female or transgender” to a gender identity question. Eight-four percent of U.S. LGBTQ workers felt personally responsible for making sure they have sufficient income in retirement, compared to 70 percent globally.
Funding Forward 2018, a gathering of grantmakers committed to LGBTQ issues, will take place from March 14-16 in New Orleans, La.
The Southern Equality Fund has announced the four recipients of their HIV/AIDS contest grand round. Each organization is receiving a $2,500 grant to support an innovative project promoting HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment in the LGBTQ South.
The documentary feature, “TransMilitary,” will premiere at the 2018 South by Southwest Film Festival in Austin, Texas in March. The film is the first feature length film project to receive funding from the GLAAD Media Institute, announced in late 2017.
The Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s Workplace Equality Program launched the second international Corporate Equality Index on Jan. 17 in Santiago, Chile.
GLAD has called on Massachusetts to end its delay in granting full legal parentage to non-biological parents. A court decision was rendered a year ago and the Commonwealth has yet to implement the decision, leaving parents and their newborn babies in legal limbo.
According to an article posted on Linkedin.com on Jan.18, Harvard Medical School will be offering courses designed to bridge the gap between current medical education and clinical practice to educate healthcare providers in how to provide gender-sensitive and inclusive care to LGBTQ patients, GLMA shared. Upon completion of these courses, participants will be able to discuss health disparities and discrimination faced by LGBTQ people in healthcare and analyze the particular health needs of specific subgroups within the LGBTQ community.
The ACLU Summer Advocacy Institute to be held from July 18-25 in Washington, D.C. for rising high school juniors and seniors in the fall of 2018 is accepting applications.
The Equality Federation has launched its 2018 Legislative Action Center where visitors can see the legislation introduced in their state that will shape the future of the movement for LGBTQ equality.
Lawyers for a transgender woman incarcerated in a Massachusetts men’s prison filed a motion for preliminary injunction, seeking her immediate transfer to a women’s facility.
Equality California announced that it has signed onto an amicus brief with The National Women’s Law Center, The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights and 85 additional organizations in Janus vs. the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees. The brief urges the U.S. Supreme Court to stand by the rights of unions, who provide crucial professional and economic opportunities for workers in the U.S., including those for women, people of color and the LGBTQ community.
A collaboration spanning several years between the Correctional Service of Canada, the Canadian Human Rights Commission, and Prisoners’ Legal Services has resulted in changes to the way transgender offenders are accommodated in Canada’s federal prison system.
info: pls-bc.ca. chrc-ccdp.gc.ca. csc-scc.gc.ca.
Pride Fort Lauderdale will celebrate the nation’s only “Love Pride” on Feb. 11 on Fort Lauderdale Beach.
The Bay Area Reporter, considered one of the longest running continually published LGBTQ weeklies in the U.S., has begun the process of digitizing all of its print issues through 2005, when its website launched and all subsequent issues could be accessed online. The GLBT Historical Society is providing their services with the digital conversion process.
The National Organization of Gay and Lesbian Scientists and Technical Professionals has announced the winners of its 2018 recognition awards for LGBTQ professionals in science, technology, engineering, and math. The recognition awards will be presented during the American Association for the Advancement of Science Annual Meeting in Austin, Texas on Feb. 18. Awardees include: Dr. Biswajit “Bish” Pau, Educator of the Year; Dr. Danelle Tanner, Scientist of the Year; and David Taubenheim, Engineer of the Year.
The Jewish National Fund has announced its 2018 Birthright Israel trip gift application season that includes one for participants to attend the LGBTQ Israeli Pride. This is open to 20-26 year olds who have never traveled to Israel. Participants will discover Israel through the lens of the LGBTQ community.
info: jnf.org. israelwithisraelis.com.
Celebrity Cruises held the first legal same-sex wedding at sea when Francisco Vargas and Benjamin Gray exchanged their vows aboard the Celebrity Equinox.
The global research firm IPSOS released the results of a 23 country survey, including the U.S., on attitudes toward transgender people. Countries surveyed were Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Ecuador, France, Great Britain, Germany, Hungary, India, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Peru, Poland, Russia, Serbia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, and the U.S. The results showed that countries around the world are becoming more accepting of transgender individuals and people around the world are more likely to say that their government needs to protect transgender people from discrimination. Most people believe that transgender people are a “natural occurrence,” though many view transgender people from a lens of mental illness or sin. In English-speaking countries, most people prefer to use the pronoun corresponding to the sex assigned to a person at birth rather then the pronoun corresponding to current identity.
info: bit.ly/2BXbdbC. williamsinstitute.law.ucla.edu.
The award-winning gay comedy mystery web series “Where the Bears Are” launched a Kickstarter campaign for a seventh season. The campaign runs through March 1.
“RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars” season three premiere was the most-watched “All Stars” episode, drawing 895,000 total viewers, according to a Nielsen survey. It trended number one in the U.S. and worldwide and was described as the number one most social cable series of the night.
The U.S. First Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a $700,000 jury award for Lori Franchina, a lesbian firefighter who experienced extensive unchecked harassment from her co-workers at the Providence Fire Department. In ruling in Franchina’s favor, in Franchina v. City of Providence, the court concluded there was more than enough evidence to support her “sex plus” discrimination claim under Title VII of the U.S. Civil Rights Act, where the “plus” in Franchina’s case is her sexual orientation. The ruling clarifies in the First Circuit that the existence of sexual orientation discrimination does not negate a sex discrimination claim under Title VII.
info: glad.org. nclrights.org. lambdalegal.org. aclu.org.
The Emmy-winning reality show “Queer Eye for the Straight Guy” has been rebooted and premiered on Feb. 7th on Netflix and has moved from New York City to Atlanta, Ga. The show’s “fab five” stars include Tan France (fashion), Bobby Berk (design), Karamo Brown (culture), Antoni Porowski (food and wine) and Jonathan Van Ness (grooming).
ConnXus announced its corporate partnership with the National LGBT Chamber of Commerce, accelerating the supplier management company’s mission to open inclusive procurement opportunities to diverse businesses. Justin G. Nelson, chamber president and co-founder, looks to ConnXus as a strategic player in the future of inclusive procurement initiatives.
info: connxus.com. nglcc.org.
GLAAD announced the findings of its fourth annual Accelerating Acceptance report, a national survey among more than 2,100 U.S. adults conducted on GLAAD’s behalf by The Harris Poll. The results were announced during a panel discussion hosted by GLAAD and The Ariadne Getty Foundation at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. For the first time in the report’s history, GLAAD and The Harris Poll found a drop in acceptance of LGBTQ individuals.
Celebrity make-up artist Jonathan Fernandez, the newest star of Season 8 of Love & Hip-Hop New York, recently opened up on the show about the traumatic gay conversion therapy he was subjected to at the age of 10.
Transgender Legal Defense & Education Fund announced the resignation of Executive Director Jillian Weiss and the appointment of Dolph Ward Goldenburg as interim executive director.
An estimated 20,000 LGBTQ youth ages 13 to 17 will undergo conversion therapy from a licensed healthcare professional before the age of 18, according to a new study by the Williams Institute at the University of California, Los Angeles School of Law. Also, approximately 57,000 youth will receive the treatment from a religious or spiritual advisor. These are the first estimates of U.S. youth at risk of undergoing conversion therapy before they reach adulthood. The researchers also found that approximately 698,000 LGBTQ adults in the U.S have received conversion therapy at some point in their lives, including about 350,000 who received it as adolescents.
The Gay Christian Network has changed its name to the Q Christian Fellowship to reflect the inclusivity and diversity of its community.
The World Values Network has announced that television personality and Olympic gold medal-winning decathlete Caitlyn Jenner will receive the Champion of Israel and LGBTQ Rights Award at the Sixth Annual Champions of Jewish Values International Awards Gala, which will be held on March 8 in New York City. Rabbi Shmuley Boteach said, “Israel is a bastion of global human rights and a great light to the nations. But the Middle East is sadly a cesspit of human rights abuses, especially toward LGBTQ citizens who are routinely murdered, beheaded, and even hung from cranes. Caitlyn Jenner, a great friend of the Jewish people and Israel, is uniquely suited to highlight Israel’s incredible record on human rights and LGBTQ rights and protection to the LGBTQ citizens which is utterly unique and unprecedented in the Middle East. I believe her remarks will have a global impact, especially as we celebrate 70 years of Israel as the Middle East’s only democracy.”
Filming began Jan. 18 on “Relish,” a motion picture that will spotlight the struggles of today’s transgender teens.
The Honorable Jody Wilson-Raybould, minister of justice and attorney general of Canada, announced an investment of $1.3 million over five years for the British Columbia Centre for Disease Control and the University of British Columbia’s Collaborating Centre for Prison Health and Education. Together, they will develop an approach to preventing HIV, hepatitis C and related sexually transmitted and blood-borne infections among federally incarcerated men in British Columbia. Specifically, the project will train and support peer health ambassadors who will work with fellow federally incarcerated men to reduce the risks associated with sexually transmitted blood-borne infections. Results and tools of the project will be shared with Correctional Service Canada.
Atlanta-based HIV activist Daniel Driffin joined forces with a global AIDS research organization in honor of National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day on Feb. 7.
Rainbow Voices Mumbai, India’s first LGBTQ choir, teamed up with with singers from LGBTQ choirs around the world — including those from the U.S., the Netherlands, England, Australia and France, as part of Mumbai Pride Month.
The National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs recorded 52 LGTBQ hate-based homicides in 2017 — an average of one each week — a sharp increase from 28 single-incident anti-LGTBQ homicides in 2016 (excluding those who were killed in the Pulse Nightclub massacre), The Huffington Post reported.
Bespoke Surgical, committed to education and advocacy for LGBTQ topics, has created a scholarship to serve these objectives. The scholarship asks students to write about instances of discrimination that they have witnessed or experienced themselves. In addition, students are asked to describe the changes that should occur to stop these prejudices from continuing. The winner will receive $2,000 from Bespoke Surgical to help with school expenses.
LGBTQ Victory Fund endorsed 23 candidates from across the nation who can help transform the political landscape in 2018.
The Woodard Racing Organisation recently announced the signing of LGBTQ racing professional Freddy Niblack.
A group of five first-year graduate students from the Bush School at Texas A&M won the second annual non profit poster presentation contest for their research into the relationship between between social acceptance and non-profit resources for the LGBTQ community.
The District of Columbia is the first in the nation to require LGBTQ cultural competency training for all healthcare providers, including pharmacists and pharmacy technicians. Health care providers are required to have “2 credits of instruction on cultural competency or specialized clinical training focusing on patients who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, gender nonconforming, queer, or questioning their sexual orientation or gender identity and expression (“LGBTQ”).”
Non-binary artist Shamir has graced the cover of WUSSY Mag’s “The Sex Issue.”
Some of the largest insurance companies are behind one of the most unrecognized anti-gay and AIDS-phobic corporate policies in America today, GLAD stated. “Big names in the corporate insurance industry, including Fortune 500 companies like State Farm and Aetna, are blatantly discriminating against gay men who take steps to prevent HIV transmission by using PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis), a once-a-day medication called Truvada.” GLAD is fighting back in Doe v. Mutual of Omaha Insurance Company.
Equality Federation, Equality Michigan and the ACLU of Michigan condemned Gov. Rick Snyder’s appointment of an anti-LGBTQ pastor to serve on the state’s Civil Rights Commission.