Metro Wellness, GLSEN hosts annual LGBTQ+ Youth Leadership and Empowerment Summit

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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Tampa | Metro Wellness and Community Centers is partnering with the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN) of Tampa Bay to hold its annual LGBTQ+ Youth Leadership and Empowerment Summit on Feb. 17.

“It is 2018, and our local and national leaders are looking to youth to rise up and create positive change!” Metro’s press release on the event reads. “The objective of the LGBTQ+ Youth Summit is to provide information on health, education and empowerment so that every attendee walks away knowing that they belong and have an important voice in the community.”

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Julia Roberts supports students fighting for LGBTQ rights

By : MARIAH COOPER OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL GAY MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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Julia Roberts announced she is standing with students fighting for LGBTQ rights under the Trump administration.

In a statement for PEOPLE, Roberts explained her show of public support for Miguel Johnson, a 16-year-old GLSEN student ambassador in St. Joseph, Mo., at the 2016 GLSEN Respect Awards where she stood behind Johnson on stage.

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DeVos meets with LGBT groups over trans student protections

By : Chris Johnson of the Washingston Blade, Courtesy of the National Gay Media Association
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Representatives from a trio of LGBT organizations and families with transgender kids met Wednesday with Education Secretary Betsy DeVos in the aftermath of the Justice and Education Departments revoking Obama-era guidance assuring transgender students access to the bathroom consistent with their gender identity.

Mara Keisling, executive director of National Center for Transgender Equality, said the meeting came about as a result of the Trump administration rescinding the guidance, which informed discriminating against transgender students would violate Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972.

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LGBT groups urge Trump admin to keep trans protections

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National Gay Media Association
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PHOTO: GLSEN Executive Director Eliza Byard is among the LGBT advocates who signed a letter urging the Trump administration to keep trans protections. (Washington Blade file photo by Michael Key)

Following a signal from the U.S. Justice Department that guidance protecting transgender students may be on the chopping block, a trio of LGBT groups — as well as an LGBT-supportive women’s organization — are calling on the Trump administration to keep the policy in place.

The letter, dated Feb. 13, is addressed to newly confirmed U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, who would be responsible for any decision to rescind the guidance.

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Md. schools still hostile to LGBT students

By : Steve Charing of the Washington Blade, courtesy of National Gay Media Association
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GLSEN last month released state-level data from its benchmark “National School Climate Survey,” which shows that U.S. secondary schools are slowly improving but remain hostile environments for many LGBTQ students.

In Maryland, the report found:

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GLSEN kicks off new school year with a new fundraiser

By : Chelsea Santiago
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School can be a challenging time for any student, and for those struggling with bullying, it can make school an even bigger challenge. LGBTQ students in the Tampa Bay area are finding some relief thanks to GLSEN.

GLSEN (Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network) is an organization that focuses on safe schools for all students regardless of gender identity.

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NBA releases new line of rainbow team shirts for Pride Month

By : Alex Storer
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orlando magicOrlando – Have you ever wanted to show your gay pride and your love of the Orlando Magic at the same time? Well now, you can.

On June 7, shirt producer Teespring began selling a series of shirts with rainbow-colored logos on them for each of the 30 NBA teams. The line is the result of a collaboration between the NBA, GLSEN, and Teespring. The proceeds from sales of the shirts will be donated to GLSEN.

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Day of Silence 2016

By : Jamie Hyman
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April 15, 2016 is the GLSEN Day of Silence, a student-led event with the goal of bringing an end to LGBT harassment and bullying in schools.

Team Watermark recognizes the difficulties LGBT youth can face at school, and is affirming our support of the aim of Day of Silence with the attached gallery of photos. Click through to find out how Watermark staff members will help end the silence.

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Gay rights groups sign letter of support for Trayvon Martin

By : Staff Report
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Thirty-five LGBT groups have signed a letter of support asking the federal government to get involved in the case of Trayvon Martin, a Florida teen killed by George Zimmerman.

Zimmerman was found ‘not guilty’ in July after facing murder charges. Since that verdict, civil rights groups have protested Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law, which the defense used in its argument. Zimmerman said he shot the 17-year-old in self defense, after he had been punched to the ground.

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