Romanians celebrate LGBTQ Pride amid moves to limit rights

By : Wire Report
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BUCHAREST, Romania (AP) – Some 1,000 people joined an LGBTQ Pride march in the Romanian capital of Bucharest May 20, demanding greater rights amid government moves they say will curtail their rights.

Some 30 ambassadors expressed support for the march and for protecting the rights of the LGBTQ community and U.S. Ambassador Hans G. Klemm was among those taking part, despite the pouring rain.

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Will Trump, gov’t agencies recognize Pride month?

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National Gay Media Association
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Picture it: President Trump enters the East Room of the White House on a warm D.C. day in June to the sound of cheers from adoring members of the LGBT community holding up their iPhones to document the occasion with videos and photos.

With his daughter Ivanka Trump and son-in-law Jared Kushner at his side, Trump welcomes guests and commemorates June as Pride month by recognizing the LGBT community’s accomplishments in recent years.

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Albania LGBTQ rights organizations hold annual Pride ride

By : Wire Report
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TIRANA, Albania (AP) – LGBTQ rights organizations in Albania have held their annual Pride event without any disturbances, while the country’s political opposition prepared for an unrelated national protest in the capital, Tirana.

Scores of bikers with multi-colored balloons and flags started their mile-long (1.6 kms) ride May 13 passing past a tent pitched by the opposition in front of Prime Minister Edi Rama’s office in downtown Tirana.

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New group defends integrated Israel military

By : Michael K. Lavers of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National Gay Media Association
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A new group seeks to counter growing opposition to LGBTQ and female soldiers in the Israel Defense Forces.

Blue and White Pride describes itself as “a movement of Israelis, men and women, who serve in Israel’s security forces, both as conscripts and in the reserves, and want to maintain the IDF as a meeting point for Israeli society.” The group also seeks to strengthen “the values of the IDF and those serving” against the backdrop of “anti-liberal forces trying to stop” the integration of women, LGBTQ Israelis and other minorities into the military.

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Trump’s Easter Egg Roll a slapdash job; LGBT presence unlikely

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National Gay Media Association
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The annual White House Easter Egg Roll — an event that has served to enhance LGBT visibility — is haphazardly coming together under President Trump, according to media reports, and will likely not include an LGBT presence.

Ashley Broadway-Mack, president of the LGBT group American Military Partner Association, said her organization has been invited to partake in the celebration since 2012, but has “had no communication with the Trump administration whatsoever about this year’s event.”

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Equality Virginia to honor Gavin Grimm at annual dinner

By : Michael K. Lavers of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National Gay Media Association
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Equality Virginia will honor Gavin Grimm at its annual Commonwealth Dinner that will take place at the Greater Richmond Convention Center in Richmond on Saturday.

Grimm is a transgender student at Gloucester County High School who filed a lawsuit against the Gloucester County School District’s policy prohibiting students from using bathrooms and locker rooms that don’t correspond with their “biological gender.” The U.S. Supreme Court was scheduled to hear oral arguments in Grimm’s case on March 28, but it remanded it to the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond after President Trump rescinded guidance to public schools that said Title IX requires them to allow trans students to use restrooms based on their gender identity.

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Mariela Castro promotes pro-LGBT ‘legislative package’ in Cuba

By : Michael K. Lavers of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National Gay Media Association
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The daughter of Cuban President Raúl Castro on Wednesday said there is a “legislative package” that would extend rights to LGBT Cubans.

Diario de Cuba, an independent website that is blocked in Cuba, reported Mariela Castro, who is director of the country’s National Center for Sexual Education, did not provide specific details when she spoke to reporters at her organization’s headquarters in Havana’s Vedado neighborhood. Mariela Castro said the Cuban National Assembly could consider the package once they approve proposed constitutional reforms, which Diario de Cuba said could take place in 2018.

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‘Love is Love’ comic raises $165,000 for Pulse victims

By : Mariah Cooper of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National Gay Media Association
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“Love is Love,” a 144-page anthology comic book, has raised more than $165,000 for the victims of the Pulse nightclub tragedy in Orlando, according to Washington Post.

The comic book, created by DC Comics and IDW Publishing, featured characters such as Superman, Harry Potter, Batwoman, Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy. Contributors included Patton Oswalt and Taran Killam. “Wonder Woman” director Patty Jenkins penned the book’s forward.

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Tampa Pride has a Grand time in GaYbor

By : Jeremy Williams
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The streets of the Ybor City Historic District were filled with people spanning every spectrum of the rainbow for the third annual Tampa Pride celebration March 25.

From the street festival on 8th to the parade down 7th to the live entertainment that featured out-singing sensation Steve Grand; the crowds cheered, waved flags and showed Pride.

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State Senator Linda Stewart pushing for ‘Orlando United’ specialty license plate

By : Staff Report
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To commemorate the unity of the City of Orlando in the aftermath of the Pulse tragedy last June, State Sen. Linda Stewart is pushing for the creation of an “Orlando United” specialty license plate, with proceeds funding various mental health organizations.

The three designated organizations that would be receiving the proceeds are The Mental Health Association of Central Florida, the Hispanic Federation, and Two Spirit Health Services Inc., which focuses mainly on the LGBTQ community in Orlando.

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All Hampton Roads cities now have police LGBT liaisons

By : Michael K. Lavers of the Washington Blade, Courtesy of the National Gay Media Association
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All seven cities in Virginia’s Hampton Roads region now have LGBT liaisons in their respective police departments.

Hampton Roads Pride on March 15 announced the Newport News Police Department appointed Sgt. Jessica Pennington as its LGBT liaison.

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German Cabinet OKs plan to annul homosexuality convictions

By : Wire Report
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BERLIN (AP) — Germany’s Cabinet on Wednesday approved a bill that would annul the convictions of thousands of gay men under a law criminalizing homosexuality that was applied zealously in post-World War II West Germany.

The decision also clears the way for compensation for those still alive who were convicted under the so-called Paragraph 175 outlawing sexual relations between men.

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