HRC, CNN to host Democratic presidential town hall on LGBTQ issues

By : Jeremy Williams
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(Image from HRC.org)

The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) is partnering with CNN to host an LGBTQ-focused town hall for the 2020 Democratic presidential candidates on Oct. 10. The LGBTQ rights organization made the announcement on its website Sept. 5.

“The evening will constitute the largest-ever audience for a Democratic presidential town hall devoted to [LGBTQ] issues and will mark the first time in history that a major cable news network will air a presidential event devoted to issues of importance to the LGBTQ community,” HRC stated.

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HRC’s new leader Alphonso David recruiting more troops

By : Karen Ocamb OF THE Los Angeles BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: HRC President Alphonso David with the bull horn as former HRC President Chad Griffin looks on. Photo courtesy HRC’s Marty Rouse.

There is something reminiscent of black gay author James Baldwin in Alphonso David’s intense bearing, though the new president of the Human Rights Campaign is considerably more down-to-earth and welcoming than the defiant intellect who scorched racist America in “The Fire Next Time.”

For David, it is the fire this time that is fueling his drive for full equality and his fight against the dark amoral forces demolishing democracy through the rapacious black hole that is President Donald Trump.

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HRC officially announces ‘six-figure’ investment in Va. General Assembly races

By : Michael K. Lavers of the washington blade, courtesy of the national lgbt media association
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ABOVE: Virginia state Del. Danica Roem (D-Manassas), left, speaks with a group of students at Battlefield High School in Haymarket, Va., on March 28, 2019. The Manassas Democrat is among the 27 Virginia lawmakers and candidates who the Human Rights Campaign has endorsed ahead of November’s general election. (Washington Blade photo by Michael K. Lavers)

The Human Rights Campaign on Aug. 15 officially announced plans to help Democrats regain control of the Virginia General Assembly this year.

HRC President Alphonso David at Diversity Richmond, a Richmond-based LGBT advocacy group, said his organization has endorsed 27 Democrats who are either running for re-election or seeking to unseat incumbent Republicans. HRC this week also said it will mobilize its supporters with digital ads and mailings and hire field organizers.

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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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Microsoft to reassess PAC money for anti-LGBTQ lawmakers

By : Lou Chibbaro Jr. OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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Microsoft last week became the first of 49 LGBTQ supportive corporations identified by a new LGBTQ group as collectively contributing millions of dollars through their Political Action Committees to members of Congress with the “worst of the worst” anti-LGBTQ records, to consider halting those contributions.

The new group, Zero for Zeros, identifies itself as a campaign aimed at persuading the nation’s most prominent and well-known pro-LGBTQ corporations to stop a seemingly contradictory practice of giving PAC money to the re-election campaigns of members of Congress who oppose and undermine the LGBTQ supportive policies that corporations like Microsoft say they support.

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Black trans woman killed in S. Carolina is the 12th in 2019

By : wire report
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ABOVE: Denali Berries Stuckey, photo via Twitter.

NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) | The 12th known transgender person to violently die this year was found fatally shot in South Carolina.

News outlets report 29-year-old Denali Berries Stuckey was found dead July 20 on the shoulder of a North Charleston road. Deputy Chief Scott Deckard said Monday the investigation is ongoing.

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New group focused on the bisexual community launches in Orlando

By : Jeremy Williams
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ABOVE: Sarah Wissig, founder of The Orlando Bisexual Alliance. (Photo by Jeremy Williams)

ORLANDO | Central Florida activist Sarah Wissig came out of the closet as bisexual 10 years ago and in that time she has become concerned over the lack of bisexual representation within the community.

“There’s very little in the way of community for bisexuals in Orlando,” Wissig says. “I got involved in the LGBTQ community right away when I came out and, no matter where I went or what I did, I seemed to be the only bisexual most of the time and I didn’t know why that was.”

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HHS says ‘conscience rule’ won’t impair HIV work—but others disagree

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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A top health official within the Department of Health & Human Services insists a “conscience rule” recently instituted by the Trump administration will have no impact on its HIV work, although LGBT groups are disputing that assessment.

Assistant Secretary of Health Adm. Brett Giroir made the remarks in testimony on July 8 before the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS, which was restaffed this year by President TrumpA transcript of the testimony was obtained Wednesday by the Washington Blade.

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Trans activist Sarah McBride running for Delaware Senate

By : Lou Chibbaro Jr. OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Sarah McBride, image via McBride’s Facebook page.

Transgender and LGBTQ rights activist Sarah McBride announced on Tuesday that she is running for a seat in the Delaware State Senate in a Wilmington area district where she was born and raised and currently resides.

McBride, 28, is running for a seat held by incumbent Democrat Sen. Harris McDowell, Delaware’s longest serving state senator, who announced he is retiring at the end of his term in 2020 and will not seek re-election next year.

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206 companies urge Supreme Court to rule Title VII covers LGBT workers

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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A total of 206 companies have signed onto a legal brief urging the U.S. Supreme Court to find Title VII of the Civil Rights Act bars discrimination against LGBT people in the workforce.

The friend-of-the-court brief — organized by the Human Rights Campaign, Lambda Legal, Out & Equal, Out Leadership and Freedom for All Americans — is signed by the nation’s top businesses and argues anti-LGBT discrimination is a form of sex discrimination, thus illegal under the Title VII.

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N.Y. becomes eighth state to ban ‘gay panic’ defense

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has signed into law a ban on gay panic defense. Photo courtesy of the Office of Governor Andrew Cuomo.

Amid celebrations of WorldPride and the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall riots in New York City, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed into law a measure banning the use of trans and gay panic as a legal defense.

Cuomo penned his name to the legislation Sunday during a signing ceremony with LGBT advocacy leaders who supported passage of the ban on gay and trans panic defense in court.

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Millions attend WorldPride parade in New York

By : Michael K. Lavers of the Washington Blade, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Millions of people turned out for the WorldPride parade in New York on June 30, 2019. The parade took place amid commemorations of the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall riots. Washington Blade photo by Michael K. Lavers.

Upwards of four million people lined the streets of Manhattan on Sunday for the WorldPride parade.

The parade began at noon at 26th Street and Fifth Avenue in the Chelsea neighborhood.

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