Prison doctor sues state alleging LGBTQ discrimination

By : Wire Report
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SACRAMENTO, CALIF. (AP) – A psychologist at a California prison facility has alleged she was twice locked in a room with a dangerous inmate in retaliation for reporting mistreatment of LGBTQ inmates.

Lori Jespersen sued the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation on Monday for violations of civil rights and whistleblower protection laws, as well as the Prison Rape Elimination Act and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, known as HIPAA. Jespersen is an employee of the California Medical Facility in Vacaville, which provides health care for incarcerated men. Her lawsuit, filed in the U.S. District Court’s Eastern Division of California, also names several corrections employees as defendants.

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Appeals court reviews Louisiana governor’s LGBT-rights order

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BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) – Lawyers for Louisiana’s Democratic governor and Republican attorney general went back to court Tuesday to argue the constitutionality of an order aimed at protecting LGBT rights in state government.

Gov. John Bel Edwards is hoping an appeals court will reinstate his executive order banning discrimination in government and state contracts based on sexual orientation and gender identity. Edwards says a lower court judge erred in deciding he overstepped his legal authority.

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AFL-CIO president resigns from Trump manufacturing council

By : MICHAEL K. LAVERS of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka on Tuesday resigned from President Trump’s manufacturing council.

Trumka in a statement said he and AFL-CIO Deputy Chief of Staff Thea Lee, who was also a member of the council, “cannot sit on a council for a president who tolerates bigotry and domestic terrorism.

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Texas anti-transgender bathroom bill dies

By : MICHAEL K. LAVERS of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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The Texas House of Representatives adjourned on Tuesday without voting a bill that would limit transgender people from using bathrooms consistent with their gender identity.

Senate Bill 3 would have prohibited schools from allowing trans students from using bathrooms and locker rooms that are consistent with their gender identity. Critics also pointed out SB 3 would have undermined trans-inclusive nondiscrimination measures as they relate to access to bathrooms, locker rooms and athletic activities.

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LGBT group asks Michigan commission for legal protections

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An LGBTQ rights group has asked the Michigan Civil Rights Commission to interpret a current prohibition on sex discrimination to include protections for sexual orientation and gender identity.

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Missouri high school removes gay students’ senior yearbook quotes

By : MARIAH COOPER OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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Two out Missouri high school students say their school removed their senior yearbook quotes because they referenced being gay.

Kearney High students Joey Slivinski and Thomas Swartz told KCTV5 when they checked to see their yearbook quotes under their senior portraits, they were nowhere to be found.

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LGBT groups condemn white nationalist rally in Charlottesville

By : MICHAEL K. LAVERS of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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LGBT rights groups are among those who have condemned a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Va., on Saturday that descended into violence.

“Everyday we partner with people and organizations across the state to make Virginia a more inclusive place where all can thrive,” Equality Virginia Executive Director James Parrish told the Washington Blade in a statement. “Through sharing our stories, listening to intersectional voices, and working for fairness we strive for a more equal commonwealth. Intimidating communities with taunts and violence has no place here. Anyone who doesn’t strongly condemn the Unite for the Right rally is complicit in supporting this dangerous and racist agenda.”

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Appeals court upholds Nebraska funeral picketing law

By : Wire Report
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OMAHA, Neb. (AP) – A federal appeals court has agreed with a lower court’s ruling upholding Nebraska’s law requiring picketers to stay at least 500 feet from funerals.

The U.S. 8th Circuit Court of Appeals on Friday said that all speakers, including members of Westboro Baptist Church, have a constitutionally-protected right to express their beliefs at funerals. But the appeals court also said that those rights “are not absolute and some time, place, and/or manner restrictions are allowed.”

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Dem AZ Rep. Sinema ‘seriously considering’ Senate challenge

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WASHINGTON (AP) — Democratic Rep. Kyrsten Sinema said Friday she is “seriously considering” a run for the Arizona Senate seat held by Republican Jeff Flake.

The three-term congresswoman said she’s heard from many in her state encouraging her to run. Flake narrowly won his first term in 2012 and is among the very few GOP incumbents who might be vulnerable in next year’s midterm elections in a Senate map that favors Republicans.

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Houston sued over possible denial of benefits to gay spouses

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Three city employees and their spouses who are concerned that Houston could be forced to stop paying benefits to same-sex spouses due to an ongoing civil case on Thursday sued the city, asking for a court order to stop any such action.

The employees’ lawsuit, filed in federal court, comes after the all-Republican state Supreme Court in June overturned a lower court’s decision favoring same-sex marriage benefits and ordered the case back to a civil court in Harris County, where Houston is located.

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ACLU sues Metro to reinstate ads for Milo, others

By : Lou Chibbaro Jr. of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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The American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit in federal court on Wednesday charging that the D.C.-area Metro transit system’s decision to ban advertisements for a book written by gay conservative writer Milo Yiannopoulos and “message” ads from three other groups, including the ACLU itself, violates the First Amendment.

Noting that Metro initially accepted the ads for Yiannopoulos’ book before abruptly taking them down last month, ACLU lawyers filed a motion asking for “immediate relief” from the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia for reinstatement of the ads to avoid further loss of revenue from book sales.

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Chelsea Manning appears in Vogue’s September issue

By : MARIAH COOPER OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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Chelsea Manning seemed to officially kick off her new life in a profile piece for Vogue’s September 125th Anniversary Collector’s Edition issue.

Manning, who served seven years in prison for leaking classified documents to WikiLeaks, sported a red, one-piece swimsuit for the upcoming issue in a photo shot by Annie Leibovitz.

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