Baby, you’re a fireWERK: Fourth of July events round-up

By : Nicole Dudenhoefer
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Here is a list of events going on this weekend to celebrate the Fourth of July:

ORLANDO
FireWERK 4th of July Weekend at Southern Nights Orlando
Kick off the Fourth of July weekend at South Nights Orlando. The July 1 event will include drag shows with Roxxxy Andrews, Tasha Long, Maya Andrews and Chevelle Brooks at 11 and 11 p.m. and 12:30 a.m. Free cover before 11 p.m. for those 21 and older. 

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Unidos – A Benefit for Pulse Employees

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Please join us for Latin Night on Thursday, June 16th as we present UNIDOS – United for Pulse Employees. NO COVER ALL NIGHT. However, we will be accepting donations that go directly to the employees of Pulse who are temporarily displaced from their job.

Show at midnight hosted by Lisa Lane. Many performers scheduled to attend. Please come out and support our community.

#orlandostrong
#oneorlando

U.S. Justice Department says HB2 violates federal Civil Rights Act

By : Jamie Hyman
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North Carolina is on notice: The U.S. Justice Department says HB2, an anti-LGBT North Carolina law, violates the federal Civil Rights Act.

The Department sent Governor Pat McCrory a letter notifying him of the violation and giving the state until Monday, May 9 to confirm they will not implement or comply with the law, which bars municipalities from protecting their LGBT citizens through anti-discrimination laws. 

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North Carolina governor issues executive order on LGBT protections

By : Jamie Hyman
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After weeks of boycotts and backlash, the governor of North Carolina has issued an executive order “clarifying” aspects of controversial HB2, which requires transgender people to use restrooms that align with their birth gender, rather than the current gender with which they identify, and prohibits municipalities from establishing protections for their LGBT citizens.

According to Gov. McCrory’s website, here’s what the executive order does:

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GoFundMe started for Georgie’s Alibi employees

By : Jeremy Williams
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St. Petersburg, Fla. – The news of Georgie’s Alibi closing spread quickly through the community after Watermark broke the story Sept. 9. Many took to social media to share stories of the LGBT watering hole and to ask what this means for the gay bar scene in St. Pete.

Along with the many events and charities Georgie’s sponsored and helped with over the years, the establishment was the workplace for more than 50 people who, once the doors close, will be out a job.

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Battle between transgender employee and Starwood heats up, for the people

By : Billy Manes
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Last year, Gina Versace filed a U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity lawsuit against her former employer, Starwood Hotels, in federal court. She alleges that she was discriminated against while under the company’s employ, the suit says, and was consistently referred to as a male, despite officially documented evidence otherwise. In 2013, Versace was fired for insubordination, according to the lawsuit and the Orlando Sentinel, though she (and her attorney) believe the motivations were more deeply seeded in discrimination. This morning, Versace’s new attorney, Matt Morgan (the son of high-profile attorney John Morgan) held a press conference at the Morgan & Morgan offices downtown to further state the case. While we were unable to attend (meetings!), the following accusations issued via press release could and should rattle Starwood, which publicly states that it prides itself on LGBT inclusion. We’ll have more on Versace’s story in the coming weeks.

Check out the press release outlining the case after the jump: 

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Bill banning gay marriage brought before Texas House

By : Wire Report
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Austin, Texas (AP) – A contentious debate is expected as a Texas House committee hears a bill barring state and local employees from licensing or recognizing same-sex marriages – even if the U.S. Supreme Court authorizes them.

The “Preservation of Sovereignty and Marriage Act” by Magnolia Republican Rep. Cecil Bell Jr. was heard on March 25.

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Exxon Mobil updates anti-discrimination employment policy

By : Wire Report
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IRVING, Texas (AP) – Exxon Mobil Corp. has updated its corporate policies to protect employees from discrimination for sexual orientation or gender identity.

Spokesman Alan Jeffers said Jan. 30 that the Irving, Texas-based oil giant added these protections to comply with federal law.

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Benefits for transgender employees continue to expand

By : Wire Report
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WASHINGTON (AP) – When Koset Surakomol decided to have a sex change operation, the company she worked for told her co-workers that the man they’d labored alongside for a dozen years should be addressed as a woman going forward.

But EMC Corp.’s support didn’t end there: The data storage company paid tens of thousands of dollars for her to undergo hormone therapy, breast augmentation and facial contouring. It also will foot the bill later this year when Surakomol has the operation that will complete her transformation – a benefit EMC began offering in 2007.

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