Metro Wellness sees surge in Hormone Replacement Therapy patients

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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ABOVE: Trans Care Coordinator Lucas Wehle (L) and LGBTQ+ Youth/Transgender Program Coordinator Cole Foust share Metro’s offerings at St. Pete Pride’s TransPride pre-party June 22 (Photo by Ryan Williams-Jent).

ST. PETERSBURG | Metro Wellness and Community Centers — currently providing Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) to 584 patients throughout Tampa Bay — has announced that nearly half of those patients have begun receiving care within the last year.

“We’ve had 275 new HRT patients and that’s without counting the 76 who are in another program that we offer,” Metro’s Trans Care Coordinator Lucas Wehle says. “Almost half of our patients have started HRT care with us within the last year… that’s huge. We’ve had a huge growth.”

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High school student comes out while running for Citrus County School Board position

By : Colton Adkins
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CITRUS COUNTY, Fla. | 18-year-old high school student Adam York, who is running for the District 5 seat on the Citrus County School Board, came out as gay during a public forum June 29.

York expressed that coming out in such a public way was never intentional, as the county is predominantly conservative, but a question during a forum motivated him.

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Central Florida candidates describe differing enthusiasm levels among young volunteers

By : Layla Ferris
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ORLANDO | A push for stricter gun laws, among other prominent issues, has politically mobilized Florida’s youth; however, Central Florida candidates say they have conflicting experiences with the enthusiasm levels of young volunteers and voters.

Three Central Florida candidates — Eric Rollings, Susan Makowski and Anna Eskamani — discussed how national enthusiasm has translated at the local level during a June 27 Pride & Allies Meeting held at the Orange County Administration Building in downtown Orlando.

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Nationalists block gay rights march to Poland’s top shrine

By : Wire report
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WARSAW, Poland (AP) | A few dozen right-wing extremists blocked a gay rights march on its route to Poland’s holiest Catholic shrine while the prime minister was attending an event at the religious site.

About 1,000 people with rainbow-colored banners and umbrellas were heading toward the Jasna Gora shrine in the southern city of Czestochowa when they came across a police cordon that separated them from the extremists. The group of nationalists had an anti-gay banner and chanted “National Czestochowa.”

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Angela Ponce will be the first trans woman to compete in Miss Universe

By : Mariah Cooper of the Washington Blade, Courtesy of the Natioan LGBT Media Association
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Angela Ponce will be the first transgender woman to compete for the Miss Universe crown, the Huffington Post reports.

Ponce, 26, won Spain’s Miss Universe in June making her the first transgender woman to earn the title. She will now advance to compete in the worldwide Miss Universe pageant which will take place in the Philippines in December.

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Window and neon sign smashed at gay landmark Stonewall Inn

By : Wire report
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NEW YORK (AP) | A teenager has been accused of smashing the front window and iconic neon sign at New York’s Stonewall Inn, a landmark in the fight for gay rights.

Police say the 19-year-old was upset he had been thrown out of the historic gay bar and destroyed the window with a baseball bat early Saturday, causing about $6,000 in damage. The teenager faces charges of reckless endangerment, criminal possession of a weapon and criminal mischief.

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Actress Sheryl Lee Ralph honored for HIV/AIDS advocacy

By : Wire report
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NEW ORLEANS (AP) | Actress, singer and producer Sheryl Lee Ralph is a triple threat in the entertainment industry but was honored during this weekend’s Essence Festival for something entirely different — her activism.

Ralph was honored Sunday as part of McDonald’s 365Black Awards, receiving the program’s advocacy award for her work fighting against HIV and AIDS.

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Tab Hunter dies at 86

By : MARIAH COOPER OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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Tab Hunter, the 1950s’ teen heartthrob who would later become a prominent figure in the gay community, died Sunday night. He was 86.

Allan Glaser, his partner for more than three decades, told the Hollywood Reporter that Hunter passed away in Santa Barbara from a blood clot that caused a heart attack.

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VIDEO: Robin Wright opens up on Kevin Spacey allegations

By : MARIAH COOPER OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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Robin Wright spoke publicly for the first time on her former “House of Cards” co-star Kevin Spacey’s sexual misconduct allegations in an interview with Today.

“I think we were all surprised, of course, and ultimately saddened. We forged ahead and I think we were all thankful that we were able to complete the series as planned,” Wright told Savannah Guthrie. “We were coworkers, really. We never socialized outside of work. Respectful, professional relationship. He was so great with me, he was never disrespectful to me, so that’s my personal experience, that’s the only thing I feel I have the right to talk about.”

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Gay-affirming Panic! back with tight new pop-leaning record

By : Thom Murphy of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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For those of us who were teenagers in the late 2000s, pop punk music was defined not only by its sound, but also its look — skinny jeans, band T-shirts and Vans shoes. Skater-inspired teenagers adamantly defended their favorite bands and devoutly followed major acts such as My Chemical Romance and Fall Out Boy. Lesser-known bands performed in small venues where fans would push against each other (light “mosh”-ing) while the bands played overloud guitars, singing snappy choruses in a nasal tenor. Frontmen and band members alike attracted devoted followings, drawing attention to their sometimes ambiguous sexuality in performative ways.

After signing to Fall Out Boy bassist Pete Wentz’ label Decaydance Records (later renamed DCD2), Panic! At The Disco became a major force in the scene with albums “A Fever You Can’t Sweat Out” (2005) and “Pretty. Odd.” (2008). Frontman Brendon Urie, the only original member who still remains in the group, has continued to release hugely successful music under the original band name. He recently made his Broadway debut in “Kinky Boots.”

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Wisconsin high court sides with fired conservative professor

By : Wire Report
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MILWAUKEE (AP) | A former Marquette University professor who wrote a blog post criticizing a student instructor he believed shut down debate against gay marriage shouldn’t have lost his job because of what he published, the Wisconsin Supreme Court ruled on July 6.

The 120-page decision concluded that the private Catholic school breached its contract with professor John McAdams that guaranteed academic freedom and that he should be immediately reinstated. The university said it would comply with the ruling.

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Salt Lake City councilman edges closer to win in Democratic primary in Utah

By : Wire Report
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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) | Salt Lake City councilman Derek Kitchen, whose lawsuit overturned Utah’s prohibition on same-sex marriage, edged closer to victory Friday in his Democratic primary race in one of the state Senate’s few liberal districts.

Updated vote results showed Kitchen’s lead had widened over physician Jennifer Plumb and could be insurmountable, Salt Lake County Clerk Sherrie Swensen said.

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