Analysis: Most states lack laws protecting LGBTQ workers

By : wire report
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Rumors started circulating around the fire station in Byron, Georgia, within a year after the medical treatments began. The fire chief’s once-crewcut hair was growing longer, and other physical changes were becoming noticeable. Keeping quiet was no longer an option.

The chief said that once members of the tiny Fire Department were told, word spread “faster than a nuclear explosion” through Byron—a city of about 4,500 in a farming region outside Macon known for growing Georgia’s famous peaches.

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Gorsuch emerges as possible LGBT ally in Supreme Court arguments

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: The U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments on LGBT inclusion under Title VII. (Washington Blade photo photo by Michael Key)

When the dust cleared Oct. 8 after two hours of arguments at the U.S. Supreme Court on whether anti-LGBT discrimination is prohibited under federal civil rights law, U.S. Associate Justice Neil Gorsuch emerged as a potential ally for LGBT people.

Gorsuch, a Trump-appointed justice who considers himself a textualist, asked many questions suggesting he’s at least considering the idea that anti-LGBT discrimination is a form of sex discrimination, thus prohibited under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

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Bucking Trump’s promise, Labor Dept. to undercut Obama LGBTQ order

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Donald Trump, photo by Michael Vadon via Flickr.

In an apparent contradiction to President Trump’s promise to keep “intact” an Obama-era executive order against anti-LGBT workplace discrimination, the Department of Labor has signaled it would expand the scope of the religious exemption for federal contractors seeking to deny employment to LGBT workers.

In the proposed rule, the Labor Department proposes regulations to clarify the scope and application of the religious exemption in Executive Order 11246, an 1965 executive order signed by President Johnson which bars federal contractors from discriminating against workers based on race, sex and other characteristics.

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Sweet Divinity: An Open Letter to Homophobes during Gay Pride

By : Divine Grace
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Hello, Dolls!

I am fully aware that the only thing more annoying than a sore loser is a sore winner, but you’ll please pardon me today as I gloat, full-blast.

50 years ago, the Stonewall Riots took place in New York City, and the gay liberation began in earnest. For the next five decades, we gays have struggled to be recognized as more than the second-class citizens that you detractors would have us labeled as.

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To gain full LGBTQ equality we must first address discrimination within our own community

By : Jerick Mediavilla
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Grocery shopping is seen as a chore for most, so it is crucial to identify the products you want to buy quickly as you walk down the supermarket aisle. Because of this the consistency of the shapes, colors, sizes and textures of products will make your life easier. Ask any marketing aficionado how successful a specific female-shaped bottle of maple syrup is, and how sweet it makes your morning pancakes.

The branding of objects has seen benefits throughout our history, from defining the artistic movements throughout the ages like the Renaissance, the baroque period or Pop art to understanding the difference between a rose and a tulip. This differentiation can be a life or death situation when diagnosing an ailment which requires specific treatment and care. Labels are useful, because when we talk about objects, it is key to discriminate between what speaks to you and what does not. The discriminatory nature of our brains allows us to make sense of our physical worlds, and in that context, deciding when to stop searching for additional information and commit to a choice becomes an organic chore.

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Meridian becomes 14th Idaho city to ban LBGTQ discrimination

By : Wire Report
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BOISE, Idaho (AP) | The city of Meridian is the latest municipality in the state to ban discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity.

Idaho’s Legislature has so far refused to pass a bill that would add such protections to the state’s human rights act. But since 2011, 14 cities have taken action.

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Tampa VA’s pride program spotlights aging LGBTQ vets

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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TAMPA | The James A. Haley Veterans’ Hospital will hold its annual pride event June 27 to highlight the intricacies of caring for aging LGBTQ veterans.

The event is organized by the hospital’s Office of Diversity and Inclusion in conjunction with its LGBTQSA special emphasis program. According to the hospital, the latter exists “to identify and address barriers, stereotypes and other related issues in the workplace,” to “foster allies, increase awareness of health care issues” and to “advocate for a caring, respectful and welcoming environment for our LGBT veterans, family members and employees.”

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N.Y. trans rights bill killed in Senate committee

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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Any hopes that New York would join other states this year and enact a law explicitly prohibiting discrimination on the basis of gender identity were dashed Tuesday when a Republican-controlled Senate committee voted down a transgender rights measure.

The Gender Expression Non-Discrimination Act, or GENDA, was defeated in the New York Senate Investigations & Government Operations Committee by a 5-4 party-line vote. The measure would have amended the state human rights law to bar discrimination on the basis of gender identity or expression and would have added transgender people to the state human rights law.

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Kansas, Oklahoma approve religious veto on LGBTQ adoptions

By : wire report
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TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — State lawmakers in Kansas and Oklahoma have approved legislation to grant legal protections to faith-based adoption agencies that cite their religious beliefs for not placing children in LGBTQ homes.

Supporters of such measures argued that the core issue is protecting a group’s right to live out its religious faith, while critics saw them as attacks on LGBTQ rights. Both Kansas and Oklahoma have GOP-controlled legislatures and governors, but in Kansas, the proposal split Republicans.

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Equality Florida highlights 2018’s statewide legislative battles

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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ABOVE: Nadine Smith, CEO of Equality Florida

Tallahassee, fla. | Equality Florida has released a highlight of the battles fought on behalf of the LGBTQ community during Florida’s 2018 legislative session.

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Carson admits to slow-walking trans guidance for homeless shelters

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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Secretary of Housing & Urban Development Ben Carson conceded during a congressional hearing Tuesday to having slow-walked the reissuing of guidance on transgender people seeking admittance to homeless shelters.

In response to questions from Rep. Mike Quigley (D-Ill.), Carson said he’s proceeded slowly because HUD has only recently had a general counsel and the issue of allowing transgender people in the shelters is “complex,” citing concerns by women whom he said don’t want to use bathroom facilities with “somebody who had a very different anatomy.”

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NFL prospect Derrius Guice says a team asked if he likes men

By : MARIAH COOPER OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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NFL prospect Derrius Guice says that while at the NFL Combine, his sexuality was questioned.

Guice, who is a LSU running back, shared on SiriusXM’s “Late Hits” that he was asked about his sexuality during the scouting process.

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