North Pinellas Pride postpones Dunedin return

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
Comments: 0

Dunedin, Fla. | North Pinellas Pride, originally scheduled to return to Dunedin April 24-26, has announced its indefinite postponement in response to COVID-19.

The inaugural celebration was held in 2010. It was scheduled to return this year after a nine year hiatus in cooperation with the Toronto Blue Jays, the Downtown Dunedin Merchants Association, the Dunedin Chamber of Commerce and the city government itself.

Continue Reading >>

Troye Sivan drops new single, looks to assist artists impacted by COVID-19

By : John Paul King of the washington blade, courtesy of the national LGBT media association
Comments: 0
ABOVE: Troye Sivan. (Photo from Instagram)

Troye Sivan is doing his best to keep us entertained during the COVID-19 pandemic – while also giving some much-needed support to artists struggling to find work – with the early release of his latest single, “Take Yourself Home.”

Originally slated to drop later in the year, Sivan decided on an early release after considering the song in a new context as he headed home to Australia for a period of isolation due to the global spread of the coronavirus.

Continue Reading >>

Tampa Bay entertainers stream recurring virtual shows

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
Comments: 0
ABOVE: (L-R) Stephanie Stuart and Vyn Suazion, photos via Pasco Pride; Beneva Fruitville, photo by Dylan Todd; Daphne Ferraro, photo via Ferraro.

TAMPA BAY | Performers from throughout Tampa Bay are streaming recurring shows via social media to raise funds and awareness for performers financially impacted by COVID-19.

LGBTQ and ally venues began announcing event cancellations, postponements and closures throughout the area to reduce the spread of the coronavirus last month. Gov. Ron DeSantis subsequently ordered bars and nightclubs closed statewide, impacting a number of entertainers financially dependent on scheduled performances.

Continue Reading >>

White House: ICE to consider release of vulnerable detainees on ‘case-by-case’ basis

By : Michael K. Lavers OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
Comments: 0
ABOVE: The Eloy Detention Center in Eloy, Ariz., on July 22, 2018. (Washington Blade photo by Michael K. Lavers)

Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Chad Wolf on April 1 did not specifically say whether U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement would consider releasing detainees who are at heightened risk for the coronavirus.

“In some cases, we do need to do that for the health and safety and well being of those detainees but again that’s a case-by-case basis,” he said in response to a reporter’s question during the White House Coronavirus Task Force’s daily press briefing at the White House. “We’re not going to make any blanket statement that we’re going to release individuals or whole groups at a time.”

Continue Reading >>

LGBTQ community raided in Uganda over social distancing

By : Wire Report
Comments: 0

KAMPALA, Uganda (AP) | A gay rights leader in Uganda says 20 members of the local LGBTQ community have been detained after police raided their shelter and accused them of violating coronavirus-related social distancing measures.

“It is evident that they were arrested because of their homosexuality,” Frank Mugisha said April 1, expressing concern for their safety as “some of them are on AIDS medication.” Gay sex is criminalized in Uganda.

Continue Reading >>

FDA eases ban on gay blood donations amid coronavirus crisis

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
Comments: 0

Faced with tremendous pressure during the coronavirus crisis to lift its policy barring gay men from donating blood, the Food & Drug Administration announced on Thursday it has eased the restrictions.

While the previous policy, established in 2015, barred men who have had sex with men in the 12 months from making a donation, the new policy would shorten the deferral period, requiring abstinence for only three months.

Continue Reading >>

One Magical Weekend moves June events to 2021

By : Jeremy Williams
Comments: 0
ABOVE: One Magical Weekend’s 2019 RED Party at Disnsy Springs’ House of Blues. (Photo by Jeremy Williams)

ORLANDO | One Magical Weekend (OMW) joins Tidal Wave Party in moving its 2020 events during Orlando’s first weekend of June celebration to 2021 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Billy Looper and Tom Christ, owners of OMW, announced in a statement released April 2 that they, along with their partners at Disney, House of Blues at Disney Springs and the Sheraton Lake Buena Vista, are making the decision to postpone OMW until 2021 for the safety of attendees as well as their team of DJs, dancers, entertainers, staff, volunteers and sponsors.

Continue Reading >>

States won’t collect LGBTQ data on COVID-19, advocates aren’t happy

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
Comments: 0
ABOVE: COVID-19, image via the CDC.

Amid the coronavirus crisis, state health officials responsible for gathering data on COVID-19 are declining to collect and report whether or not patients identify as LGBTQ — a practice that angers LGBTQ advocates who say those answers could yield important information to combat the disease.

The lack of data, advocates say, will essentially blind the public to the coronavirus’ impact on LGBTQ people — a population that may be particularly vulnerable to COVID-19 — as the epidemic continues to rise and health officials warn the death toll in the United States will hit its peak in the coming weeks.

Continue Reading >>

04.02.20 Central Florida Bureau Chief’s Desk

By : Jeremy Williams
Comments: 0

I had been in the U.S. Air Force for seven months when the 9/11 terrorist attacks happened.

It being nearly 20 years ago since that life-changing event happened, I can’t remember everything that occurred in my life after Sept. 11, 2001; however, I do remember people being shocked and scared. I remember my family and friends being worried and not knowing what was coming next.

Continue Reading >>

04.02.20 Tampa Bay Bureau Chief’s Desk

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
Comments: 0

If my 35 years on this planet and love of ridiculous memes have taught me anything, it’s that life comes at you fast.

The last few months have certainly reminded me that’s the case. “I’ve never had a particular affinity for cars,” I wrote in this very column Feb. 6, a lifetime ago now that the world is grappling with COVID-19. “I’ve always been grateful to own the ones I have … I’ve just never been one to covet the latest make or model to move about town.”

Continue Reading >>

Come Out With Pride to host virtual event to benefit LGBTQ community

By : Jeremy Williams
Comments: 0

ORLANDO | Come Out With Pride announced March 31 a virtual event to benefit Central Florida’s LGBTQ individuals, nonprofits and organizations effected by the coronavirus pandemic.

“Stay In With Pride” will be an online, interactive event that will broadcast live April 3 starting at 8 p.m. on Come Out With Pride’s Facebook page and YouTube channel.

Continue Reading >>

DC’s Capital Pride postpones 2020 events

By : Lou Chibbaro Jr. OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
Comments: 0
ABOVE: Capital Pride Alliance Executive Director Ryan Bos announced all Pride events have been postponed. (Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

The Capital Pride Alliance, which organizes D.C.’s annual Pride Parade and Festival, announced March 30 that it has postponed all of its Pride related events scheduled for May and June, including the parade and festival, due to the escalating impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

Capital Pride officials said new dates for the events would be announced in the coming weeks.

Continue Reading >>