Boston man charged with assault, hate crime after attacking gay man with shovel, box cutter

By : Wire Report
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BOSTON (AP) | A Massachusetts man accused of striking another man with a shovel, attacking him with a box cutter and calling him anti-gay slurs has been arrested on charges of assault and committing a hate crime, Boston police said.

Boston police officers responded to reports of an assault around noon on Dec. 3 and found a man bleeding from the head.

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Massachusetts becomes 16th state to ban ‘ex-gay’ therapy for youth

By : Chris Johnson of The Washington Blade, Courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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ABOVE: Gov. Charlie Baker (R-Mass.) has signed into law banning conversion therapy. (Photo by the Rappaport Center; courtesy Wikimedia Commons)

Massachusetts became the 16th state in the nation to ban “ex-gay” conversation therapy on April 8 after Gov. Charlie Baker signed a measure into law prohibiting the widely discredited practice for youth.

Brendan Moss, a Baker spokesperson, confirmed via an email to the Washington Blade his boss signed the legislation against conversion therapy.

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Massachusetts House approves gay conversion therapy ban

By : wire report
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BOSTON (AP) | Massachusetts House lawmakers have approved legislation that would ban so-called gay conversion therapy for minors.

Supporters of the ban say the practice — which aims to alter a person’s sexual orientation — is widely discredited by medical and mental health associations and can lead to depression and suicide in young people.

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Massachusetts lawmakers seek ban on “gay conversion therapy”

By : wire report
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BOSTON (AP) | Massachusetts lawmakers are pushing legislation to ban so-called “gay conversion therapy” for minors.

The legislature’s Committee on Children, Families and Persons with Disabilities moved two bills March 6 that would make Massachusetts the 16th state to outlaw the practice — which aims to alter a person’s sexual orientation.

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Maine Episcopalians elect openly gay bishop

By : wire report
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BANGOR, Maine (AP) | Clergy and church members have elected the first openly gay Episcopal bishop in Maine.

The Portland Press Herald reports that the Rev. Thomas James Brown was elected Feb. 9 by a majority of the 261 clergy members and laypeople at the Cross Insurance Center in Bangor.

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Massachusetts moves transgender inmate to women’s prison

By : wire report
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BOSTON (AP) | Massachusetts prisons officials have for the first time moved a transgender inmate from a men’s prison to a women’s prison.

Court filings show that the 54-year-old inmate, who has lived as a woman and received hormone therapy for decades, was transferred in September from MCI-Norfolk to the state women’s prison in Framingham.

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For same-sex couples, a new path to legal parenthood

By : wire report
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BOSTON (AP) | When Sara Watson’s partner got pregnant with their son through in vitro fertilization, they were overjoyed. Then the fear came.

They weren’t married, so Watson had no legal rights as Eli’s parent even though her eggs were used to conceive him with donor sperm. If the worst happened, Watson wondered, would she even be able to bring their baby home from the hospital?

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Transgender rights lie in the hands of a state’s electorate

By : wire report
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BOSTON (AP) | Nicole Talbot isn’t quite old enough to vote, but she isn’t shy about urging Massachusetts residents who are to keep a state law that protects transgender people from discrimination, including the right to use restrooms and locker rooms that match their gender identity.

It makes her feel safe, Talbot said, which wasn’t always the case for the teenager, an accomplished singer with dreams of a Broadway career. For as long as she can remember, she felt she was a girl — like the time she insisted upon being a princess at a preschool Halloween party — even when the world beyond her mother subjected her to taunts and discrimination.

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Massachusetts anti-trans ad renews fear-mongering over bathroom use

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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The campaign in Massachusetts seeking to repeal a law barring discrimination against transgender people in public accommodations is resorting to old tactics of stoking unfounded fears about male sexual predators being allowed in women’s restrooms.

The ad is unveiled as Massachusetts voters are poised to vote in November on Question 3, which will decide whether the state will retain its non-discrimination law against anti-trans discrimination in public accommodations, including restrooms and locker rooms. The law was signed by Republican Gov. Charlie Baker in 2016 and has been on the books for two years, but placed on the ballot as a result of a voter-initiated referendum.

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Gov. Baker to address national Republican LGBT organization

By : wire report
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BOSTON (AP)| Gov. Charlie Baker is set to address the nation’s largest Republican LGBT organization.

The Massachusetts Republican will deliver the keynote address Oct. 2 at the Log Cabin Republicans Spirit of Lincoln Dinner in Washington.

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Bill to ban conversion therapy dies in Mass.

By : Lou Chibbaro Jr OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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A bill calling for banning licensed mental health professionals from performing conversion therapy for minors died in the Massachusetts Legislature on Aug. 1, even though it had been approved by both the state House and Senate.

In a development that disappointed LGBT activists, the state Senate passed the bill by voice vote without opposition minutes after midnight on the final day of the legislature’s 2018 session. But the Senate was unable to make technical changes needed to make the bill consistent with a version passed by the House in June before the legislative session ended for the year.

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Exclusive: Kennedy, Markey seek to ban anti-LGBT panic defense in court

By : CHRIS JOHNSON OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Rep. Joe Kennedy III (D-Mass.) and Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) introduced legislation against anti-LGBT panic defense. (Washington Blade photo of Kennedy by Michael Key; photo of Markey public domain)

The use of a panic defense to justify anti-LGBT violence in federal court will come to an end if new legislation introduced this week by a pair of Massachusetts Democrats becomes law.

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