World Health Organization to no longer classify transgender people as mentally ill

By : Michael K. Lavers OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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The World Health Organization on May 25 voted to declassify transgender people as mentally ill.

Human Rights Watch in a press release notes the World Health Assembly, the WHO governing body that represents the 194 countries that are members of the U.N. health organization, approved the removal of Gender Identity Disorder from its diagnostic manual. Human Rights Watch LGBT Rights Director Graeme Reid said the change “will have a liberating effect on transgender people worldwide.”

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Center Global to hold annual reception at Room and Board

By : Michael K. Lavers OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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Above: Center Global on May 9, 2019, will hold its annual reception at Room and Board in Northwest D.C. The organization has helped more than 200 LGBT asylum seekers since 2012. (Photo by Ted Eytan; courtesy Flickr)

Center Global will hold its annual reception at Room and Board on 14th Street on May 9.

Rayceen Pendarvis will emcee the event during which Human Rights Campaign Global Director Ty Cobb and Gleb Latnik, an LGBT activist from Russia who now lives in D.C. with his husband, will be honored.

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LGBTI marches in Cuba cancelled

By : Michael K. Lavers OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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The organizer of Cuba’s annual International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia marches on Monday announced they have been cancelled.

The marches were to have taken place in Havana on May 11 and the city of Camagüey on May 17.

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Bill would prompt State Department to review ‘lavender scare’ firings

By : Michael K. Lavers OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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U.S. Sen. Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) introduced a bill that would prompt the State Department to review the termination of personal during the so-called “lavender scare.”

A press release that Menendez’s office released on May 1 notes the bill, known as the Lavender Offense Victim Exoneration (LOVE) Act, would direct the State Department “to review all employee terminations since 1950” and “identify all those who were wrongfully terminated because of their sexual orientation.” The measure would also require the State Department to establish boards “to hear their stories and correct their official records” and address anti-gay discrimination against diplomats and their families.

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Planned Parenthood: States should oppose Trump ‘gag rule’

By : wire report
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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) | It’s time for states with leaders who support abortion rights to go on the offensive against Trump administration attempts to restrict abortion that would reduce access to health care, the president of Planned Parenthood said April 23.

“States are a critical backstop at a time when we have the Trump-Pence administration stripping away women’s health and rights and when we cannot depend on the Supreme Court,” said Dr. Leana Wen.

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The Wonderful World of Wanzie: Welcome Spring!

By : Michael Wanzie
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We are now living in a time when we, as citizens and indeed the elected leaders of the United States of America, seem to be constantly at odds with another. Not merely over policies or how best to solve a problem, overcome adversity or deal with a crisis; rather over whether or not the policy was ever really a policy to begin with and whether or not the problem, adversity or crisis actually exists or ever existed.

It is impossible to make any real progress debating solutions when our time is instead spent debating what is fact and what is fiction; what is news and what is fantasy. Never in my lifetime have I witnessed such a crippling of the ability of our government, indeed the ability of our nation as a whole, to achieve consensus on any matter because we the people can’t even agree on the validity or truthfulness of said matter. This my friends will go down in history as the most significant and most harmful blow to our democracy brought about by the election of Donald J. tRump as president.

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Trump says DOJ, FBI to review the Jussie Smollett case

By : Mariah Cooper Of The Washington Blade, Courtesy Of The National LGBT Media Association
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President Donald Trump tweeted on March 28 that the U.S. Department of Justice and FBI will review the “outrageous” Jussie Smollett case after prosecutors dropped 16 counts of disorderly conduct against the “Empire” actor.

“FBI & DOJ to review the outrageous Jussie Smollett case in Chicago. It is an embarrassment to our Nation!” Trump tweeted.

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House votes to rebuke Trump’s trans military ban

By : Chris Johnson Of The Washington Blade, Courtesy Of The National LGBT Media Association
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The U.S. House voted March 28 to rebuke President Trump’s transgender military ban by approving a non-binding resolution with bipartisan support.

The resolution, which was introduced by Rep. Joseph Kennedy III (D-Mass.), was approved by a vote of 238-185 after an hour of debate on the House floor in which lawmakers denounced the Trump administration’s policy as discriminatory.

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Jair Bolsonaro visits White House, reiterates opposition to LGBTI rights

By : Michael K. Lavers Of The Washington Blade, Courtesy Of The National LGBT Media Association
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Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro on March 19 reiterated his opposition to LGBTI rights when he spoke alongside President Trump during a press conference in the White House Rose Garden.

Bolsonaro, speaking through a translator, stressed his government’s “respect of traditional family values” and opposition to “gender identity.” Bolsonaro in his remarks also praised Trump.

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Court rules Trump admin ‘incorrect’ in moving forward with trans military ban

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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In a development that could complicate the implementation of the transgender military ban, a federal judge in D.C. ruled the Trump administration is “incorrect” in determining no legal impediment remains in place barring enforcement of the policy.

U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly, a Clinton appointee, issued a notice on March 19 asserting her injunction remains in place for the time being despite an order from the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals vacating the decision.

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Buttigieg slams Pence as ‘cheerleader of the porn star presidency’

By : Chris Johnson of The Washington Blade, Courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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Openly gay, 2020 presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg slammed his fellow Hoosier Vice President Mike Pence, who’s notorious for his anti-LGBT record, as a “cheerleader of the porn star presidency.”

Buttigieg made the comments March 10 during a CNN town hall event at the South by Southwest tech conference in Austin in response to a question from host Jake Tapper on whether Pence would be better or worse than President Trump.

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We look back on 2018, a midterm year for a country that’s just living on a prayer

By : Jeremy Williams and Ryan Williams-Jent
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It’s been two years since we, as a country, entered into the reality that is the Trump Administration. The country feels more divided than ever and the phrases “fake news” and “it’s all a witch hunt” are commonplace.

The violence that seems to define who Americans are these days is also there, particularly in Florida, where there has been no justice for the five transgender women of color who were murdered and yet another mass shooting—this time at a high school in Parkland, Fla.—pulled the focus of the world to our state.

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