LGBTQ Dreamers Fear Detention and Deportation and Need DACA’s Protections

LGBTQ Dreamers Fear Detention and Deportation and Need DACA’s Protections

Getty/Drew AngererA view of the Statue of Liberty is seen during a naturalization ceremony in Jersey City, New Jersey, September 2017. On November 12, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments on the legality of President Donald Trump’s termination of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. The stakes of this case are extremely high: Since the policy was announced on June 15, 2012, it has provided temporary protection from deportation and work authorization to approximately 825,000 undocumented young people, including thousands of LGBTQ people. By applying the Gallup estimate of Millennials who identify as LGBT, 8.1 percent , to the number of DACA recipients in the country, the authors conservatively estimated that at least 66,825 LGBT individuals have received protection under DACA.* † The DACA program has allowed recipients who identify as LGBTQ to live free from the daily fear of deportation and improve their economic security and educational attainment.

LGBTQ DACA recipients, like all DACA recipients, have made enormous gains under the program. In addition to the effect that DACA has had on LGBT recipients’ economic security and educational attainment, a recent survey also shows that DACA has played a large role in LGBT recipients’ feelings of inclusion and belonging in the United States: 65 percent of LGBT recipients reported that after their DACA application was approved, they felt more like they belong in the United States. Meanwhile, 66 percent reported that they have become more involved in their community, and 62 percent reported becoming more politically active after their DACA application was approved. President Trump’s termination of the program put these gains in jeopardy. A note on the survey data

From August 14 to September 6, 2019, Tom K. Wong of the U.S. Immigration Policy Center at the University of California, San Diego; United We Dream; the National Immigration Law Center; and the Center for American Progress fielded a national survey to analyze the experiences of DACA recipients. The full survey results are available here and on file with Tom K. Wong. This survey included a question asking respondents to report whether they identified as straight, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or gender nonconforming. Out of 1,105 respondents, 157 individuals, or 14 percent of the total sample, stated that they were either lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or gender nonconforming.

The authors combined the responses from survey respondents who identified as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or gender nonconforming. They then conducted analyses to explore current beliefs and experiences of LGBT DACA recipients as well as potential differences between LGBT and non-LGBT survey participants related to the harms of President’s Trump’s rescission of this policy. Potential risks of deporting LGBT DACA recipients

Although two-thirds of LGBT survey respondents reported, “After my DACA application was approved, I am no longer afraid because of my immigration status,” they also expressed concerns about detention and deportation, providing insight into the harms that LGBTQ DACA recipients could face if President Trump succeeds in terminating the program. Without DACA’s protection from deportation, LGBTQ recipients once more would be at risk of being deported to their countries of birth. Like other DACA recipients, LGBTQ recipients have spent their formative years in the United States, meaning their countries of birth are unfamiliar to them; more than half of LGBT DACA recipients surveyed in 2017 were 5 years old or younger when they were brought to the United States. They also lack support networks in these countries, with less than one-third of LGBT survey respondents reporting that they have an immediate family member still living in their country of birth. Fears about the lack of stability in and familiarity with their home countries are clear in the survey results: 80 percent reported, “In my country of birth, I would be concerned about the physical safety of myself and my family.”

72 percent reported, “In my country of birth, I would be concerned about the quality of healthcare for myself and my family.”

58 percent reported, “In my country of birth, I would be concerned about food insecurity for myself and my family.”

43 percent reported, “In my country of birth, I would be concerned about homelessness for myself and my family.”

Given these well-founded concerns about the safety and security of being an LGBTQ person in countries such as El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras , losing protections under DACA and being deported would put the physical safety, health, and security of LGBTQ DACA recipients and their families at serious risk. LGBT recipients fear the consequences of losing DACA

LGBT survey respondents also indicated that the uncertainty around the program’s future—and, by extension, their own personal future—is often on their minds. LGBT survey respondents were significantly more likely than the rest of the DACA recipients surveyed to think at least once a day about the following immigration enforcement consequences of losing their protections: 56 percent reported thinking about “Being detained in an immigration detention facility” about once a day or more.**

64 percent reported thinking about “Being deported from the U.S.” about once a day or more.***

74 percent reported thinking about “A family member being detained in an immigration detention facility” about once a day or more.****

With record numbers of immigrants being detained , traumatizing enforcement actions such as raids , and the uncertainty around the fate of their protections under DACA, the pervasive concerns of LGBT DACA recipients around detention and deportation are understandable. Conclusion

Stripping LGBT DACA recipients of these protections would have disastrous effects on their lives. Given the disproportionate risk of abuse that LGBTQ people face in immigration detention and the widespread risk they face in much of the world , the fears expressed by LGBT survey respondents are serious. Policymakers should address these fears, which weigh heavily and frequently on LGBT DACA recipients, through strengthening—not weakening—protections.

Sharita Gruberg is the director of policy for the LGBT Research and Communications Project at the Center for American Progress. Laura E. Durso is the vice president of the LGBT Research and Communications Project at the Center. Tom K. Wong is a senior fellow at the Center as well as an associate professor of political science and founding director of the U.S. Immigration Policy Center at the University of California, San Diego.

* An earlier estimate by the Williams Institute finds that the proportion of young adults ages 18 to 29 who identify as LGBT and are undocumented is 4.4 percent. Applied to the total number of DACA recipients, the Williams Institute reached an estimate of 36,000 DACA recipients who identify as LGBT. CAP uses the Gallup estimate for Millennials who identify as LGBT and applies that to the total number of DACA recipients. Since LGBT people of color and high-school-age youth identify as LGBT by larger percentages than the general LGBT population, this is likely a conservative estimate.

** p=0.002

*** p<0.001

**** p=0.035

† Correction, October 17, 2019: This column has been updated to clarify that an estimated 66,825 LGBT individuals have received protection under DACA at some point. Not necessarily all of these individuals currently hold DACA protections.

There are more tanning salons where gay men live, according to study, and they might be causing skin cancer

There are more tanning salons where gay men live, according to study, and they might be causing skin cancer

Donald Miralle/Getty Researchers in the US have discovered that there are more tanning salons in neighbourhoods with high numbers of gay men – and that this could be raising skin cancer rates.

For the study, researchers looked at data of households where there were male same-sex couples across 4,091 census tracts, NBC News reports.

They then looked at the distribution of tanning salons in the same cities and founds that the odds of living near a tanning salon were twice as high in areas with high numbers of male couples. Research is important as gay men experience higher rates of skin cancer than heterosexual men.

“This matters because gay men already experience many health disparities and also have higher rates of skin cancer,” Dr Eleni Linos, one of the study’s authors said.

She said that tannings beds are “a known carcinogen” and that having more of them available in neighbourhoods with high concentrations of gay men is problematic.

Gay and bisexual men are six times as likely as heterosexual men to use tanning salons, which doubles the risk of skin cancer. This matters because gay men already experience many health disparities and also have higher rates of skin cancer. Stars you didn’t know are gay or lesbian

Celebs you didn’t know have an LGBT sibling

Researchers examined the rates of tanning salons in 10 US cities: Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Seattle, San Diego, Dallas, Phoenix, Portland, Denver and Washington D.C.

They also looked at other factors such as the percentage of white residents and the number of young women living in these areas, but they did not affect the outcome significantly. Research has previously found a need to target gay and bisexual men with preventative measures.

Research conducted in 2015 found that gay and bisexual men were more likely to use tanning beds and also experienced higher rates of skin cancer than heterosexual men.

At the time, reserachers said that there was a strong need to target gay and bisexual men with preventative measures.

The research – which was published in JAMA Dermatology – involved 78,500 straight men, more than 3,000 gay and bisexual men, 108,000 straight women and 3,000 lesbians.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control has claimed that indoor tanning beds are in no way safer to use than outdoor tanning.

Despite this, tanning salons remain persistently popular among various cohorts of society.

Paddy, a gay disability activist with cerebral palsy, wins reality show The Circle

Paddy, a gay disability activist with cerebral palsy, wins reality show The Circle

Paddy Smyth took home £70,000 after winning reality show The Circle. (Channel 4) Paddy Smyth, a gay disability activist with cerebral palsy, was announced tonight (October 18) as the winner of Channel 4’s reality show The Circle and took home £70,000.

Georgina placed second, Tim and Sammie came joint third, and fifth place was taken by recently out bisexual festival-goer Woody.

Paddy, who was a late arrival to the show, originally introduced himself by saying: “I’m disabled, I’m queer and I’m here.”

He was praised by contestants and viewers alike for his dazzling personality, and his determination to not let his disability get in his way. To be honest even though Paddy came halfway he truly deserved win. He was genuine and he didn’t allow his disability to get in the way his personality.
Big thumbs up is his outfit. #TheCircle

— ♣Selina♥ (@SelinaGiGi) October 18, 2019 Before entering the apartment block, he said that if he were to win he would use the money to help his mum, as his dad recently passed away, but he added: “I’d bedazzle my crutches and get gold-plated ones… Then I’ll probably squander most of it away and go on a big piss up.”

It was a double queer win, as gay theology professor and cat owner Tim Wilson also took home £30,000 as the “Viewer’s Champion”, voted for by viewers on the night of the final. the uk might’ve voted wrong for brexit, but they voted right for tim to win viewer’s champion and that’s all i could ask for #TheCircle

— (@beatrizblib) October 18, 2019 In the final episode, the five remaining contestants gave the ratings which would decide the winner of the game, and then met around a table to see each other in person for the first time.

The only remaining “catfish” was single mother Sammie, and the other players were shocked when they discovered that “Sammie” was actually James.

When Tim entered the room, he exclaimed: “Who is this? Oh my god, Sammie! You’re going to have to tell me quite a lot about yourself, you’re a very naughty boy.” #TheCircle TIM I WANTED YOU TO TEAR THIS JAMES BLOKE TO SHREDS BUT YOU HIT OUT WITH “you are a very naughty boy” AND IM ALMOST HAPPIER THAN I THOUGHT

— bennett (@bnnt_t) October 18, 2019 James said he chose to play a single mother because he loves his own mum, who raised him on her own, and he wants to support her by winning the prize money.

However Tim hit back, saying: “It’s really difficult to do a good thing by doing something which is really dodgy .” Dont hug me you untrustworthy Catfish #TheCircle

— F.Thought.Less (@FThoughtLess1) October 18, 2019 Paddy told the other contestants: “My vulnerability is for everyone to see. The Circle gave me the opportunity to see if people liked me for me.”

He also told Woody, the son of Zoe Ball and Fatboy Slim : “You’re hotter in person that you are in your pictures!”

In the live interviews before the winner was announced, professor and former monk Tim revealed what he had learned on the show. He said: “Everyday I was learning!

“New hashtags, new emojis, some very naughty acronyms. The one that’s going through my mind right now is ‘WTF’. Woody taught me another one, ‘MILF’. And I thought, I could be a ‘DILF’!” I want Tim to have his own chat show please #TheCircle

— Laura (@houseofcaley) October 18, 2019 In Paddy’s interview, he spoke about his special relationship with fellow contestant Georgina, who lives with Crohn’s Disease.

He said: “Our foundation was that I’ve never met someone who understood what it’s like to have a condition you’re stuck with… It was almost like she was female version of me.”

Stars you didn’t know are gay or lesbian

Celebs you didn’t know have an LGBT sibling

He added: “[My disability] all people see when they look at me. I realised people love me for who I am and I’ve never really believed that.”

LGBT workers head to Supreme Court for blockbuster discrimination cases: ‘I’ll be that person to stand up’

LGBT workers head to Supreme Court for blockbuster discrimination cases: 'I'll be that person to stand up'

Gerald Bostock pictured in front of the Supreme Court on Monday, Oct. 7, 2019.

Tucker Higgins | CNBC

Gerald Bostock was devastated when he learned he had been fired from his job overseeing child welfare services for the Clayton County, Georgia juvenile court system.

The role, he says now, was his dream job. He believed working with children was his calling, and that he was good at it. In 2010, his county became the first in Atlanta to supply a volunteer to every neglected or abused child in the system.

Bostock believes he was fired for being gay. His termination came in 2013, months after he joined a gay softball league, after a history positive performance reviews. When he lost his job, he also lost friends, his home and his health insurance, he said.

Now Bostock’s firing is at the center of a blockbuster set of Supreme Court cases that will determine whether LGBT workers may be fired on the basis of their identities. Arguments are set for Tuesday morning.

“Somebody needed to stand up,” Bostock said in a recent interview. “I’ll be that person to stand up so that nobody has to go to work fearful of losing their job.”

The Supreme Court cases are the first to squarely address the question of whether federal anti-discrimination law protects lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender workers.

While the court has expanded the rights of LGBT individuals in recent years, holding that same-sex marriage is protected by the Constitution, for instance, it has yet to apply protections to the workplace. In about half the country, states and localities have passed laws forbidding such discrimination. In the other half, including Clayton County, workers are without protection.

“In an era where people want to believe that gay marriage solved everything, this shows that it clearly didn’t. There are many battles left,” said Brian Riedel, a professor at Rice University who studies LGBT social movements.

The justices will hear the cases of three LGBT workers who were fired, including Bostock. The other two individuals are Donald Zarda, a gay man who was fired from his job as a skydiving instructor after remarking on his sexual orientation to a female client, and Aimee Stephens, a transgender woman fired from her job as a funeral director after she announced her intention to present as a woman.

Ahead of arguments, it is not clear how the justices may come down on the issue. The case is the first major LGBT case to come before the justices since the departure of Justice Anthony Kennedy, who had long been a champion for gay rights from the court. In focus will be Justice Brett Kavanaugh, Kennedy’s replacement, who is believed to be more conservative.

“I think that it is actually a case that is pretty hard to predict,” said David Cole, the national legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union, which is representing Zarda and Stephens. Asked which justices he is hoping to corral into a majority, Cole said: “I’ll take any five.”

The decisions in the cases are expected by the end of June, in the middle of the 2020 presidential election. Because of ‘sex’

Aimee Stephens talks during in an interview in Ferndale, Mich., Wednesday, Aug. 28, 2019.

Paul Sancya | AP

The legal question comes down to the language of Title 7 of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which bars discrimination because of “sex” but does not specifically mention sexual orientation or gender identity. Both the workers and the employers agree that the lawmakers who passed the law did not envision that it would protect gay or transgender workers.

But in legal briefs, the workers have noted that the Supreme Court has applied the Civil Rights Act to unforeseen territory before.

In the 1989 case Price Waterhouse v. Hopkins, the court ruled that the law also barred discrimination against workers on the basis that they do not conform to gender stereotypes. Years later, the court ruled in the 1998 case Oncale v. Sundowner Offshore Services that the law protected workers against discrimination by members of the same sex.

Federal appeals courts have split on the issue.

The Eleventh Circuit, which reviewed Bostock’s case, dismissed his complaint. Under the court’s precedent, “discharge for homosexuality is not prohibited by Title VII,” a three-judge panel said in an unsigned opinion.

The appeals courts which reviewed Zarda and Stephens’s cases came down differently.

The Second Circuit, which heard Zarda’s case, also had precedents on the books which held that Title 7 did not apply to LGBT workers. But after the full court heard the case, it reversed those precedents.

“Looking first to the text of Title VII, the most natural reading of the statute’s prohibition on discrimination ‘because of . . . sex’ is that it extends to sexual orientation discrimination because sex is necessarily a factor in sexual orientation,” Chief Judge Robert Katzmann wrote.

He added that “sexual orientation discrimination is predicated on assumptions about how persons of a certain sex can or should be, which is an impermissible basis for adverse employment actions.”

Likewise, in Stephens’s case, the Sixth Circuit held that firing someone based on their transitioning status is by definition discrimination based on sex stereotypes.

“There is no way to disaggregate discrimination on the basis of transgender status from discrimination on the basis of gender non-conformity, and we see no reason to try,” Circuit Judge Karen Moore wrote.

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, a federal agency, has also said that Title 7 forbids gender identity and sexual orientation discrimination, though the Trump administration, via the Department of Justice, has taken the opposite view.

“Even if sexual orientation were a ‘function’ of sex, that would be insufficient, standing alone, to violate Title VII; otherwise, all sex-specific practices, including bathrooms, dress codes, and physical fitness standards, would be unlawful,” Solicitor General Noel Francisco wrote in a brief with the top court.

Francisco argued that the top court’s prohibition on discriminating based on sex stereotypes likewise does not forbid discriminating based on gender identity or sexual orientation. While Title 7 protects men from being fired for being effeminate, that protection applies equally to straight and gay employees, he wrote.

Sunu Chandy, the legal director for the National Women’s Law Center, which filed a brief in support of the employees, said she will be looking at whether the justices ask questions about the practicality of such distinctions during arguments. Adopting such a standard, she said, would “throw into havoc civil rights protections that have been precedent for decades.”

“What I’m really interested in is how you could practically exclude LGBT workers from these civil rights protections that we all enjoy?” she said. “If there is someone who does not comply with sex stereotypes, the employer could then say, ‘[you were fired] because I thought you were gay,’ and get a free pass.” Businesses support LGBT workers

The cases have attracted a flurry of legal arguments from both sides of the debate. Somewhat unusually, many major businesses have come out in favor of the workers, effectively asking the court for more stringent regulations.

In one particularly strong show of force, more than 200 businesses, including Apple, Google and CNBC parent NBCUniversal signed onto a brief supporting the workers in the case.

“The failure to recognize that Title VII protects LGBT workers would hinder the ability of businesses to compete in all corners of the nation, and would harm the U.S. economy as a whole,” the firms wrote.

Bostock’s attorney, Brian Sutherland, made a similar argument in a recent interview, noting that discrimination can have adverse consequences for those who are not directly discriminated against.

“Discrimination against LGBTQ folks does not only hurt them. It hurts the people that they serve,” he said.

That point weighed on Bostock, too.

“I’m very proud of who I am. And I’m proud of the man who I’ve become,” he said. “And I am very proud of the hard work and success that I had in Clayton County, especially because it impacted the lives of so many children who suffered from abuse and neglect.”

Bostock said that the last six years for him have been draining, both financially and personally. But he said that he’s been energized by the prospect of changing the way the law is applied to millions of people “who are fearful of losing their job because of who they are, who they love, and how they identify.”

“I absolutely would not change a single thing,” he said.

The cases are Gerald Lynn Bostock v. Clayton County, Georgia; Altitude Express v. Melissa Zarda; and R.G. & G.R. Harris Funeral Homes v. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

Kellogg’s launches LGBT-themed breakfast cereal called All Together as a ‘symbol of acceptance’

Kellogg’s launches LGBT-themed breakfast cereal called All Together as a ‘symbol of acceptance’

KELLOGG’S has launched an LGBT-themed cereal called All Together as a “symbol of acceptance”.

The £15.50 special edition rainbow-lettered box contains mini-packs of Corn Flakes, Frosties, Froot Loops, Rice Krispies, Raisin Bran and Frosted Mini-Wheats to “celebrate the belief that we all belong together”. Kelloggs LGBT-themed cereal called All Together has been released as a ‘symbol of acceptance’ It was launched to mark Spirit Day in the US — an annual event that promotes the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.

Kellogg’s said: “The box brings together six of the famous Kellogg’s mascots and cereals inside the same carton as a symbol of acceptance no matter how you look, where you’re from or who you love.”

But Twitter user Jon Chingford accused Kellogg’s of “jumping on the LGBT band wagon”. And Mike Schofield said: “Are LGBT not allowed to have normal cereal? Absolute nonsense.”

The All Together box could go on sale in the UK if the trial in New York is a success. If it’s a hit in the US, the All Together cereal could make it to the UK Kellogg’s launches white chocolate Coco Pops for the first time in 59 years GOT a story? RING The Sun on 0207 782 4104 or WHATSAPP on 07423720250 or EMAIL

Meet the trans swimmer who made NCAA and LGBT sports history

Meet the trans swimmer who made NCAA and LGBT sports history

Harvard Athletics Schuyler Bailar All month long, Outsports is revisiting key moments in gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and queer sports history as part of LGBTQ history month.

Today, we’re revisiting the achievement of Schuyler Bailar, a Harvard University swimmer who was the first out transgender swimmer to compete in NCAA history.

Bailar spoke in Naperville, Ill. last month about his transition and acceptance.

“You can be exactly who you are, whatever that means to you. It doesn’t have to be transgender, queer, gay, or something to have to do with the LGBTQ spectrum,” Bailar told those gathered at Metea Valley’s auditorium. “It can be something that differs from what your parents expect from you, or what society at large expects from you. You can be exactly that and also do what you love. Your identity never has to rob you of your own passions.” Our friend Erik Hall wrote about Bailar in his college sports roundup of Nov. 10, 2015:

Schuyler Bailar walked out of the men’s locker room and onto the pool deck in a single file with his Harvard teammates. Before Friday’s swim meet started, the national anthem played and it gave Bailar some time to think before the meet.

”It was a pretty emotional moment for me,” Bailar said. “I had been at countless national anthems getting ready to race and this was the first one I was really myself in a swim setting, and that’s something I’ve been working towards for a really long time.”

Bailar made history in Friday’s dual meet against Bryant by becoming the first NCAA Division I openly transgender swimmer, according to Harvard.

There were about 10 minutes after the national anthem before Bailar’s first race, when he’d swim the breaststroke in the 200 medley relay. He took his sweat suit off a little before the race and focused on the competition.

”I realized everything is different at that moment,” Bailar said. “I’m wearing a Speedo instead of a woman’s suit. I’m on the men’s team. There are so many things that are different. But at the same time, I’m wearing cap and goggles and about to jump in the pool to swim … the breaststroke. In that sense, nothing’s changed.”

His 200 medley relay finished fourth as did his 400 freestyle relay. He also swam the 100 butterfly, finishing 12th out of 15 competitors in 56.26 seconds.

Bailar’s best performance came in the 100-yard breaststroke, where his fifth-place finish scored one point for Harvard. His time was 1 minute, 3.11 seconds.

It helped Harvard beat Bryant, 165-120, at Harvard’s Blodgett Pool.

”I didn’t expect myself to be able to beat many people, and scoring obviously means that I beat some people,” said Bailar, whose last meet before Friday was in Feb. 2014. “That was really exciting and rewarding and just surprising — not because I should be any less than anybody else, but I am starting behind most of the guys.”

Bailar said his dad, Gregor Bailar, attended the meet. It helped the meet feel normal, because his dad attended every high school meet. The Bryant team also made Bailar feel comfortable.

”I was curious if people would talk to me or say dumb things or look at me funny or make it obvious that I am different,” Bailar said. “That didn’t happen.”

Harvard’s next meet is Friday and Saturday at Ithaca, N.Y., against Cornell and Dartmouth. But for the first one, Bailar said he felt “stoked with the result.”

”I had a lot of fun,” Bailar said.

Tomorrow — and every day in October — we’ll look back at another moment in LGBTQ sports history.

Church throws support behind MoBay mayor over LGBT ban

Church throws support behind MoBay mayor over LGBT ban

MONTEGO BAY, St James — The church has thrown its support behind mayor of Montego Bay Homer Davis and the St James Municipal Corporation, who are scheduled to face the Supreme Court today for a judicial review of an earlier decision to ban the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) group Montego Bay Pride from using the Montego Bay Cultural Centre for an event.

“I commend you and all the councillors. I commend our mayor. I commend all leaders here for unanimously standing up for the values of righteousness. The values of the Bible speaks of one man and one woman and of the sanctity of the proper relationship, and standing up against those who would promote the gay rights agenda,” said Reverend Peter Burnett, chairman of the St James Ministers’ Fraternal.

Burnett was leading the devotion at last Thursday’s monthly general meeting of the St James Municipal Corporation.

Founder of Montego Bay Pride Maurice Tomlinson filed a lawsuit on September 24 against Davis and the corporation for banning the group from using the corporation-controlled Montego Bay Cultural Centre to host a week of events to include a public forum on the topic, ‘Is Jamaica ready for same-sex marriage?’ The October 13-18 event has since been cancelled.

The decision to bar the group was made on September 12 during the corporation’s monthly general meeting.

Davis had reportedly stated that nothing must be done to disturb the sacredness and purpose of why the cultural centre is there.

“We are grateful to see the support from the church community, the wider community of Montego Bay and St James, and Jamaica, for the position which we have taken. Yes, the matter is before the courts, and we are prepared to have our day in court,” stated a confident Davis.

The corporation has retained the services of the law firm Henlin Gibson Henlin, while Tomlinson, a lawyer, is being represented by lawyers from Jamaicans for Justice.

Montego Bay Pride has claimed that their constitutional rights, including the right to freedom of expression, as well as assembly and association, have been breached.

Grace Ridge is a Credentialed LGBT-Friendly Retirement Community

Grace Ridge is a Credentialed LGBT-Friendly Retirement Community

Grace Ridge is committed to meeting the needs of all older adults, including the growing lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender population. As part of that commitment, the community recently became one of just five retirement communities in North Carolina to earn a SAGECare credential for successfully completing the training program for LGBT cultural competency.

"We’re pleased to demonstrate with this certification our inclusive environment and dedication to serve a growing population of LGBT adults," said Chris Romick, executive director at Grace Ridge. "No one should be discriminated against or feel isolated. Our staff is trained to foster a supportive environment."

North Carolina is one of 26 states that doesn’t prohibit housing discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity.

The New York-based Advocacy & Services for LGBT Elders (SAGE) organization established its SAGECare training program for senior housing and senior care providers, centered on LGBT cultural competency. Grace Ridge has joined the almost 300 senior care providers nationwide who’ve received the SAGECare credential.

"We’re thrilled that Grace Ridge has earned their SAGECare credential and is committed to creating an inclusive community for LGBT residents, as well as a welcoming environment for LGBT family members of other residents," said SAGE Senior Director of National Projects Tim Johnston, Ph.D.

SAGECare involves a four-hour intensive training session for upper management and one-hour in-person training programs for frontline caregivers and team members, as well as ongoing training and support. The training covers many topics, including: The needs of LGBT seniors

Ways to reduce and respond to bias behavior

Overview of federal protections

Best practices to help create a supportive environment for current and future LGBT residents

"Over the course of my career in the senior living industry, I’ve met residents and staff who have struggled with their identity and being able to express themselves in a senior housing setting," said Romick. "I feel strongly that being able to express yourself freely and share who you are is part of a quality of life experience that every community should provide. Grace Ridge has always been open arms, but now with the SAGECare credential, we can provide that extra affirmation."

About Grace Ridge Retirement Community

Nestled in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, Grace Ridge is a Life Plan Community spanning 52 acres in Morganton, North Carolina. Owned and operated by Carolinas HealthCare System Blue Ridge, our mission is to create a secure environment that supports individual choices and lifestyle, and our values contribute to our welcoming, positive attitude. We believe a good mood is integral to wellness and our vision is one where dreams and expectations truly are reality. To learn more about Grace Ridge, visit or call 828-580-8300.

Halsey received rape threats after her ground-breaking performance with a female dancer

Halsey received rape threats after her ground-breaking performance with a female dancer

Halsey at the 2019 Emmy Awards. (Getty) Halsey has revealed that “all hell broke loose” after she performed her single ‘Without Me’ with a female dancer.

The singer-songwriter said that she suffered a fierce backlash after appearing on The Voice in 2018 alongside dancer Jade Chynoweth.

“People were going, ‘What is this lesbian garbage on my TV?’” she told The Sunday Times .

“My phone number leaked, my email leaked. People were texting me things like, ‘I’m going to rape you straight.’ Heinous stuff.”

The 25-year-old said the response was the perfect example of society’s double standards, explaining: “There are performances by other artists that are way more sexual.

“Here’s what’s important, though — the young people sitting on the couch next to that angry dad, that angry mom, hearing them spewing hatred. The kid that’s scared to come out needs to see that on the TV.” Halsey is proudly bisexual.

Following her performance on The Voice in December 2018, Halsey said that she was “very proud to have p***ed off the homophobic viewers at home who missed the message”.

“Representation matters,” she added on Twitter. “Thanks @NBCTheVoice for giving a space for this vision to come to life. and thank you @JadeChynoweth for being an incredible human who used her body like the ultimate instrument for this collaboration.”

Halsey came out as bisexual in 2015 and is a fierce advocate for LGBT+ representation.

Stars you didn’t know are gay or lesbian

Celebs you didn’t know have an LGBT sibling

In 2017, she released the same-sex love song ‘Strangers’, a duet with bisexual Fifth Harmony singer Lauren Jaurequi.

Halsey revealed that record label executives had suggested she record the song with Katy Perry , to which she replied: “I’m not putting an artist on this song unless they’re f***ing gay.” Singer revisits Women’s March speech.

As well as LGBT+ issues, Halsey is also a vocal advocate for women, survivors of sexual assault and people with mental health issues.

At the 2018 Women’s March, she recited a memorable and moving poem about her own experiences with sexual assault.

Speaking to the Times, Halsey said that she was initially “deflated” by the muted response her poem received during the march.

“When I did it, there were 2,000 people in front of me, and no one was listening or paying attention — if you watch it, there was barely even a cheer at the end,” she said.

“I got on a plane straight after, back from New York to LA, and when I landed, I turned my phone on. The video had 10 million views. I’m sitting at home reading about thousands of women’s experiences, which of course I’m absorbing, little empath girl. And that speech is still getting a response.”

Grindr bans man who set up account to help people with chemsex and drug abuse issues

Grindr bans man who set up account to help people with chemsex and drug abuse issues

Grindr (Rafael Henrique/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty) A man who set up a Grindr account to help people experiencing issues with drug abuse had his account repeatedly shut down by the hook-up app.

Chemsex substance abuse expert Ignacio Labayen de Inza set up the Grindr account specifically to direct people to relevant advice on drug abuse.

He also compiled his own research on drug dealing on the app – all voluntarily – by talking to both dealers and users and later presented the evidence to Grindr, Buzzfeed News reports. The chemsex substance abuse expert had his account blocked by Grindr.

While using the app, more than 2,600 gay and bisexual men contacted him asking for advice. While the company initially listened to him, they later told him to report the drug dealing to the relevant authorities himself and later stopped responding altogether.

They then blocked him from using his account and only let him back in after four months of appeals. When they allowed Labayen de Inza back into his Grindr account, he was told that he had been banned due to a breach in “community guidelines”.

Just last month, Channel 4 Dispatches, Buzzfeed News and the Terrence Higgins Trust revealed in a documentary called Sex, Drugs and Murder that more than a quarter of GHB users have been sexually assaulted.

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The drug is commonly used in chemsex and can be fatal when an overdose is taken.

For the documentary, 2,700 gay and bisexual men who take the drug were surveyed, with two thirds saying they had issues such as addiction, overdose and sexual assault.

Almost half of all GHB users had overdosed and passed out when using the drug and most were unaware that snoring is a sign that a person is slipping into a lethal coma. People in the UK are more likely than other countries to use drugs to enhance sex.

Dr Owen Boden-Jones, founder of the Club Drug Clinic in London, said: “The one thing that’s really distinct though, about GHB, is the small difference between the amount a user takes to get the desired effect and the amount that causes an overdose.

“There are some national statistics and those national statistics show that over the last decade, the number of people who die with GHB detected in their system, is around 20 per year.

“Now; that is probably a very large underestimate and the reason for that is when there’s a death, there’s not always the toxicology done to detect to see if GHB is there.”

Meanwhile, a Global Drug Survey from earlier this year found that people in the UK are more likely to use drugs to enhance sex compared to other countries.