LGBTQ youth who are making a difference: Ian Siljestrom

By : Jeremy Williams
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27 | Gay | He/Him/His

Ian has made his way around Florida. Born in Cocoa Beach, he left for the University of Florida in Gainesville and then settled in Jacksonville where he was a science and health teacher for fifth graders.

“So I didn’t ever want to [work in the LGBTQ community]. It wasn’t ever of interest to me. I was all science everything. I studied sustainability in college. I intended to be an elementary school teacher to get my kid excited about science. And that’s what I did and that’s everything that drove me,” Ian says.

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Dining Out For Life adds Central Florida, Space Coast LGBTQ organizations to list for 2020

By : Jeremy Williams
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ORLANDO | Dining Out For Life, an annual fundraiser for local HIV service organizations at locations around the world, announced June 6 that The LGBT+ Center and Project Response would be participating in the event in 2020.

“Central Florida will now be part of Dining Out For Life International because of the efforts put forth by The LGBT+ Center Orlando, Inc. (The Center) and Project Response, Inc. of Melbourne,” the press release announced.

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‘Glee’ actor Chris Colfer comes to Kissimmee for book tour

By : Anna M. Johnson
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Chris Colfer, actor and singer of Glee fame, will be holding an event for his newly released book The Land of Stories: An Author’s Odyssey in Kissimmee July 19.

This novel is the fifth in the children’s fiction series The Land of Stories.

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Take action! Osceola County to consider living wage ordinance on Monday

By : Billy Manes
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Perhaps we should blame Hollywood and Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia for the false pretense of queer pageantry, but that tired stereotype that gays and lesbians sip cosmos and casually ponder how to spend their vast sums of disposable income masks some harsh realities.

The truth, as UCLA’s Williams Institute pointed out last year, is that more than 20 percent of LGBT adults rely on food stamps, and twice as many report being food insecure, compared to the nation as a whole. We’re not all taking long walks down far-thrown beaches waiting for our next disposable purchase. We’re talking just getting by and serving people turkey legs. In Osceola County, an MIT study concluded, the living wage for one adult with one child is $22.92 an hour. The inequities are clear.

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Grieb unseats incumbent for county commission seat

By : Samantha Rosenthal
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CherylGrieb_161893331

Cheryl Grieb

During the craziness of covering Florida 2014 Midterm Elections one candidate seemed to fly under the radar in our result coverage—openly gay Democrat Cheryl Grieb who unseated Republican Frank Attkisson by only 106 votes for Osceola County Commission District 4 seat.

Grieb is a former Kissimmee city commissioner and Vice Mayor, but said this race was one of the toughest she’s ever had to face. She is currently the chairperson of Greater Osceola Partnership of Economic Prosperity and a member of the Downtown Kissimmee Area Council for the Chamber of Commerce.

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