Latino LGBTQ Festival comes to Orlando: FUERZAfest!

By : Chelsea Santiago
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Strength, Love and Unity.

Three words that can describe the Orlando atmosphere as the community came together after the worst mass shooting of US history, which killed 49 members of the LGBTQ and Latin community.

Three words that will be the fitting theme of the five day festival dedicated to all those affected by the Pulse Nightclub tragedy.

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Reno speed-match program matches non-profits with donors fearful of election results

By : Wire Report
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RENO, Nev. (AP) – A group of northern Nevada nonprofits has begun hosting speed-dating style meetings to match people fearful about the results of the presidential election with organizations that need donations and volunteers.

Event organizer Jackie Shelton tells KRNV-TV that a Saturday evening gathering that drew about 200 to a Reno bakery probably won’t be the last.

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Doc on transgender YouTube star Gigi Gorgeous among films premiering at Sundance

By : Wire Report
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LOS ANGELES (AP) – Former Daily Show correspondent Jessica Williams flexes her dramatic chops, Cate Blanchett pays homage to great 20th century artists and Silicon Valley star Kumail Nanjiani tells a very personal story in some of the films premiering at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival.

Festival programmers announced their selections for the documentary and narrative premiere sections Dec. 5, which has launched films like Boyhood, Manchester by the Sea and O.J.: Made in America.

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Sex offender pleads not guilty to rape charge

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aliea-rose-brownBOZEMAN, Mont. (AP) – A transgender registered sex offender has pleaded not guilty to charges that allege she had a sexual relationship with a 15-year-old girl.

The Bozeman Daily Chronicle reports 28-year-old Aliea Rose Brown of Manhattan appeared in District Court in Bozeman Dec. 5 and pleaded not guilty to sexual intercourse without consent.

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ACLU ask Obama to commute sentence for Chelsea Manning

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LEAVENWORTH, Kan. (AP) – The American Civil Liberties Union and gay-rights groups are lobbying President Barack Obama to commute the prison sentence of a transgender soldier who leaked classified government and military documents.

The ACLU said the letter Dec. 5 co-signed by more than a dozen civil rights groups considers Chelsea Manning’s 35-year sentence unprecedented.

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ASAP and Francis House become EPIC, name new executive director

By : Jeremy Williams
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TAMPA – Empath Health announced Dec. 7 that the HIV service’s providers AIDS Service Association of Pinellas (ASAP) and Francis House in Tampa will merge under the new name Empath Partners in Care, or EPIC.

EPIC will become the largest provider of HIV services in the Tampa Bay area, including case management, counseling and pharmacy services, among other programs from its five locations in the region.

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US appeals court favors gay-straight club at Carver Middle School

By : Wire Report
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LEESBURG, Fla. (AP) — A federal appeals court has ruled that students at a Florida middle school have the right to form a gay-straight alliance club.

The decision by the Atlanta-based 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals Dec. 6 came after the American Civil Liberties Union of Florida appealed a previous judge’s decision that school officials could deny the club recognition. The court’s reversal opinion found the club should have equal access to use school facilities as other extra-curricular clubs.

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Apple was (RED) for World AIDS Day

By : Wire Report
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CUPERTINO, Calif. (AP) – Apple marked World AIDS Day by giving more than 400 of its stores a makeover in red.

Apple stores on five continents turned their logos red or featured red window decals Dec. 1 in an effort to raise visibility for World AIDS Day. It also launched new products and efforts to support (RED), a multi-brand effort aimed at raising money to fight the spread of the disease in Africa.

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Walmart settles same-sex benefits discrimination lawsuit for $7.5 million

By : Wire Report
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BOSTON (AP) – Lawyers for a former Walmart employee who sued the retail chain for denying her same-sex spouse health benefits have asked a federal court judge to approve a $7.5 million class-action settlement.

Jacqueline Cote sued Walmart in 2015, saying the Bentonville, Arkansas-based company repeatedly denied medical insurance for her wife before 2014, when it began offering benefits for same-sex spouses.

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Maryland senator seeks apology for fired workers in ‘lavender scare’

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BALTIMORE (AP) – Maryland Sen. Ben Cardin wants Secretary of State John Kerry to formally apologize to hundreds of federal workers who were fired decades ago because of their perceived sexual orientation.

The Baltimore Sun reports that the Democratic senator said in a letter to Kerry on Nov. 29 that it’s time for the country to apologize for the so-called “lavender scare.”

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Barney Frank to speak at launch of LGBT Justice Fund

By : Wire Report
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PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — Retired Democratic Massachusetts congressman Barney Frank and the Maine Justice Foundation are holding an event in Portland to launch a new fund designed to help gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people access civil legal aid.

The new fund is called the LGBT Justice Fund. Frank will deliver the keynote address at Maine Justice Foundation’s event, scheduled for Dec. 7 at 5:30 p.m. at Holiday Inn By The Bay in Portland.

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Suspect in Albany LGBTQ bar shooting in custody

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ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) – A suspect has been arrested in connection with the Thanksgiving morning shooting at a bar popular with Albany’s LGBTQ community that left one man dead and three wounded.

Police say the suspect was taken into custody Dec. 5 on a charge unrelated to the Nov. 24 shooting at Rocks on Central Avenue. The suspect’s name hasn’t been released.

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