Steve Knight and Katie Hill A Republican congressman who is known for his anti-LGBT views will face a challenge from an out-and-proud Democrat.
Steve Knight is the member of the US House of Representatives for California’s 25th congressional district.
The lawmaker was behind a 2016 plot to pass a law permitting sweeping anti-LGBT discrimination in all federal agencies by attaching it to a defence spending bill.
He was accused of “catering to right wing extremists who would turn back the clock on equality” with the proposal to exempt religious contractors from anti-discrimination rules.
Knight also insists that marriage is “a union of one man and one woman” and opposed California’s ban on gay ‘cure’ therapy.
But the lawmaker, who only won the seat in 2014 and 2016 by a three percent margin, is facing a challenge from an out Democratic lawmaker.
Katie Hill, who is bisexual, won enough votes in this week’s primaries to secure a spot on the November ballot against Knight. Katie Hill She is backed by the LGBTQ Victory Fund, which supports out candidates in races across the US in a bid to secure better representation in politics. Former Mayor of Houston Annise Parker, President & CEO of LGBTQ Victory Fund, said: “Katie’s victory sets up a general election battle between her positive, solutions-oriented vision for the district and the politics of hate and destruction her opponent thrives on.
“Steve Knight and his family made careers out of attacking LGBTQ people and working to rollback equal rights. Now, voters have an opportunity to defeat him with an openly bisexual woman who has pledged to represent all her constituents. “Katie will make history in becoming the first openly LGBTQ Congresswoman from California if elected in November, but more importantly, she will head to Capitol Hill determined to reduce the divisiveness and produce actual results for all Americans.”
She is one of a slate of LGBTQ Democratic candidates who won their primary races.
Amelia Marquez, who is the Democratic candidate in the race for Montana’s 52nd state house district, could become Montana’s first openly transgender legislator the nation’s second openly transgender state legislator if she wins over Republican Rodney Garcia. Amelia Marquez Tippi McCullough is set to become the only openly LGBTQ person in the Arkansas state legislature, with no Republican candidate standing.
McCullough’s expected victory comes five years after she was forced to resign her teaching job because of her sexuality.
Lamont Robinson, standing in Illinois’ 5th state house district, would become the first openly gay African-American state legislator in Illinois history if elected.
Walmart has settled a discrimination lawsuit filed by a transgender former employee.
Charlene Bost, sued the corporation in December , for wrongfully terminating her employment with them after she complained about workplace harassment. She was represented by civil rights organisation The Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund, which says they are satisfied with the outcome.
While the TLDEF was looking to secure both unspecified damages and improved training to prevent the harassment of transgender workers at all Walmart stores, details of the settlement have not been released. However, it has been revealed that the US retailer did not admit to any wrongdoing.
The case was dismissed in federal court in Greensboro, North Carolina . Charlene Bost claims she was unlawfully fired by Walmart Inc. in March 2015 (Scott Olson/Getty) Walmart spokesperson Randy Hargrove said: “While we have strong anti-discrimination policies, we are glad we could resolve this matter with Ms. Bost.”
At the time the lawsuit was filed, TLDEF stated that it is not enough for retail giants such as Walmart to merely have anti-discrimination policies in place and said they must also make sure they are enforced throughout each and every one of their branches .
In her dispute, Bost detailed how her several of her co-workers used to refer to her as “sir” or “shim” – a term that combines ‘she’ and ‘him’ – while also labelling her “that thing with an attitude.” Bost also claimed that a male superior had physically harassed her.
Bost, 46, began presenting as a woman at work back in 2008, four years after she became an employee at the Walmart-owned Sam’s Club Warehouse store in Kannapolis, North Carolina. She went on to become a member service supervisor but was fired in March 2015. Bost worked in a Sam’s Club warehouse, which is owned by Walmart Inc. (Scott Olson/Getty) Bost added that her colleagues believed she suffered from gender dysphoria or upset caused by the sex she was assigned at birth, and that she believes that might have played a part in her dismissal.
She accused Walmart of violating Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, that prohibits employers from discriminating against employees on the basis of sex, race, colour, national origin, and religion.
TLDEF Executive director Jillian Weiss further explained: “The difficulty here is that Wal-Mart has a good policy, but when a person like Ms. Bost came forward to say she was having trouble because of the discrimination she faced, its enforcement mechanisms were insufficient.
“Corporations have to enforce compliance with anti-discrimination policies, not merely cite their existence.”
At the time, Hargrove argued that Bost’s “termination was for performance reasons.”
Season Two will see the boys makeover a woman The Fab Five are back and PinkNews has the exclusive first look!
Queer Eye returns to Netflix for Season 2 on June 15 on Netflix and we now have our first peek at what’s to come in the new episodes.
The trailer shows the Fab Five return to the return to the Georgia heartland to transform more lives – including the show’s first female hero – through fashion, food, culture, home decor and grooming.
Watch the trailer: The clip also shows Antoni Porowski, Bobby Berk, Karamo Brown, Jonathan Van Ness and Tan France rolling up their sleeves to build a community centre for a church, in what is set to be another tear-jerking episode.
The new season , which drops in one week, promises to be another rollercoaster of tears and laughs as the boys forge connections with communities from a wide array of backgrounds and addressing everything from self-love to good food. Earlier this year, Tan France revealed the second season would be more diverse, featuring a transgender man for the first time.
“I had never interacted with a trans person before, I’d never met a trans person before. And so it gave me an opportunity to ask questions that I have never been able to ask before,” he told Press Association.
“For example, what was it that when they realised they wanted to have top surgery (a surgical procedure carried out on the breasts of transgender patients), what made him decide that was the final thing that was going to change this process for him, that would really make him feel like a man? Season Two will air on 15 June on Netflix (Netflix) “To things like, what is it that we can do to help? I’m ignorant, I don’t know what I can do to support the trans community. What kind of questions do you never want to hear again? Those kinds of questions were really helpful, for me and the audience.”
The Emmy Award-winning series Queer Eye for the Straight Guy first debuted 15 years ago, changing the face of reality TV.
The reboot of the show – which sees five gay men educating straight men about fashion, grooming, culture, home decor and food – has proved to be the must-watch, feel-good programme of this year.
Netflix VP of content Bela Bajaria said: “These series are indicative of what we’re trying to accomplish for Netflix unscripted: working with world-class producers to create the best unscripted shows on television.
“These series elevate the genre with innovative takes on familiar formats. They deliver immersive and nuanced stories. They elicit so many emotions from viewers, from tears of laughter to tears of joy — and that’s just Queer Eye .”
Queer Eye Season 2 premieres globally on Netflix from June 15. Visit netflix.com/queereye to watch Season 1 now.
The council member said some constituents had not been able to use the beach because of their beliefs (Spencer Platt/Getty) A member of the New York City council has said he will sponsor two gender-segregated beach days for his religious constituents this summer.
Chaim Deutsch, a Democratic City Council member, said he will rent a beach to host a “Southern Brooklyn Beach Day” on separate dates for men and women.
Deutsch said he would pay for the necessary city permits and costs on days the beach would normally be closed.
He said he would fund the event because he has a number of Orthodox Jewish and Muslim constituents who have not been able to use the beach because of their religious beliefs .
“I have a lot of Orthodox Jewish and Muslim constituents in my district who have never been able to go to the beach before,” Deutsch told the New York Post . The New York Civil Liberties Union said the plan was gender discrimination (Getty) “They’ve never been able to smell the beach, to walk in the sand. Everyone should be able to enjoy the beach.” He added women and men of all religions would be welcome to attend the separate beach days.
In response to the news, Donna Lieberman, the executive director of the New York Civil Liberties Union, said people “did not have the right to impose gender discrimination on a city beach simply because it’s mandated by their religion .”
“It is one thing for the city to provide reasonable accommodation for religious practice, and quite another to limit the public access of everybody else.”
This week, it was announced that New York City is set to introduced a third gender option on birth certificates, under plans supported by Mayor Bill de Blasio and City Council Speaker Corey Johnson. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has backed a gender-neutral option on birth certificates (Spencer Platt/Getty) The city is set to approve a policy recognising a third gender category of ‘X’ alongside ‘M’ and ‘F’.
The move would allow people who do not identify as male or female to gain legal recognition for gender identity.
During a City Hall press conference on Monday, Johnson said: “This groundbreaking legislation will make New York City birth certificates more inclusive for all and will send a powerful signal to the world that New York City government works for everyone.”
The mayor said: “Pride Month is a time to celebrate how far we’ve come in the fight for equality, and re-affirm our commitment to protecting all New Yorkers from discrimination.
“This proposal will allow transgender and gender non-conforming New Yorkers to live with the dignity and respect they deserve, and make our City fairer.”
(REFILES to fix conversion in last par)
By Umberto Bacchi
LONDON, June 6 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – A villa seized from the mafia near Naples is to become a shelter for LGBT Italians and migrants who have fled discrimination in their home countries, in a bid to foster acceptance in Italy’s conservative south, local officials said on Wednesday.
The mayor of Castelvolturno, a coastal town north of Naples, said a gay rights group had won permission to turn a three-storey building once owned by a local mafia boss into a centre for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people.
“We want to send a message of acceptance,” the mayor, Dimitri Russo, told the Thomson Reuters Foundation by phone.
It is the first time an asset seized from the mafia has been assigned to an LGBT group in Italy, according to Rain Arcigay Caserta, the organisation that will run the shelter.
Activists say homophobia and prejudice are widespread in Italy, which has also grown increasingly uneasy with the arrival of more than 600,000 migrants who have reached the country’s shores from north Africa since 2014.
A new coalition government installed last week has pledged a crackdown on immigration, with the interior minister saying the country would no longer be “Europe’s refugee camp”.
The new cabinet has also drawn criticism from LGBT groups over anti-gay comments made by the newly appointed family minister, a staunch conservative Catholic.
The head of Rain Arcigay Caserta, Bernardo Diana, said LGBT asylum-seekers faced a double stigma, with many hiding their sexual orientation fearing rejection also from fellow migrants.
“They can’t live their sexuality freely,” he said.
Italy legally recognised gay couples in 2016, but remains one of the lowest scoring countries in western Europe for gay rights, getting only 27 out of 100 points in a 2018 survey by rights group ILGA.
Transgender people are particularly discriminated against and are often disowned by their families, especially in the south, Diana said.
He plans to house some of them with LGBT Italians who are rejected by their families in Castelvolturno, where about one in two people is a migrant, according to the mayor.
The villa is part of a group of houses near a lake that police seized from Naples mafia boss Francesco Rea in the late 1990s and have remained largely abandoned since, said Russo.
Rain Arcigay Caserta has launched a crowdfunding campaign to fund renovation works hoping to create room for eight people as well as a job counselling centre and a space for cultural activities, Diana said.
Currently the closest LGBT shelter is located about 200 km (125 miles) away in Rome, he added.
Reporting by Umberto Bacchi @UmbertoBacchi, Editing by Claire Cozens. Please credit the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, that covers humanitarian news, women’s rights, trafficking, property rights, climate change and resilience. Visit news.trust.org
“We have to ensure that no human being is discriminated against on the basis of their gender or their sexual orientation," said Noel Burke.
Noel Burke, a church leader in Barbados, has come out in support of the country’s lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender, or LGBT, community. Burke’s show of solidarity comes days after three LGBT activists stated their intention to challenge Barbados’ buggery laws at the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.
“We have to ensure that no human being is discriminated against on the basis of their gender or their sexual orientation. So every person has that right to participate in all of the areas and enterprises of human life,” said the Anglican cleric who also serves as the Chairman of the Barbados Christian Council Canon.
”Persons of the LGBT community have every right to go to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) to put their case forward to have every right to be heard,” he said.
Alexa Hoffman, a 24-year-old trans woman, is leading the movement to have the laws changed.
“Suffice it to say that these laws have been on the books for far too long and are causing a lot more damage than they are intended or expected to, given that they invade a person’s rights to privacy in terms of consenting adults being able to more or less show intimacy through whatever ways they see fit,” Hoffman said in a report published Monday.
Last month, Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May said she “deeply regrets” Britain’s historical legacy of colonialism which imposed anti-gay laws throughout the Commonwealth.
Last year, the United Kingdom marked the 50th anniversary of the passing of the Sexual Offences Act 1967, which decriminalized private sexual behavior between men over 21 in England and Wales. The law erased the centuries-old Buggery Act, allowing the UK to proudly proclaiming its so-called progressive stance on the LGBT rights to the rest of the world.
Originally instituted in 1533, during the reign of King Henry VIII, to make homosexual sex a crime punishable by death, the British empire transferred its antiquated law to its colonies in different parts of the world. Many of its former colonies continue to be shackled with anti-LGBT laws which were passed on to them as a kind of heirloom.
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Buy Photo Detroit — The city of Detroit’s commitment to inclusivity was on display Wednesday in Hart Plaza as officials gathered to raise a rainbow flag and, with it, awareness for issues surrounding the LGBT community.
Mayor Mike Duggan led the ceremony alongside City Council President Brenda Jones, Detroit law enforcement and leaders for the LGBT community.
Duggan said the city’s commitment to LGBT issues aligns with a campaign promise he made to build a city where members of the community felt included and "fully valued."
"The entire city of Detroit is supporting and celebrating LGBT Pride Month with you today," the mayor told a crowd of at least 100 that gathered for the flag raising. Jeynce Poindexter, Transgender Victims Advocate for Equality Michigan, speaks during a ceremony to raise the rainbow pride flag in honor of LGBT Pride Month in Hart Plaza, in Detroit, June 6, 2018. (Photo: David Guralnick, The Detroit News) The ceremony in Hart Plaza is the second for Detroit and comes in advance of this weekend’s Motor City Pride festival celebrating the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.
The two-day event, being held June 9-10 at the plaza along Detroit’s riverfront, is expected to draw about 35,000 people from the region as well as Ohio, Indiana, Illinois and Ontario. The program features a parade, rally, entertainment and family activities.
Curtis Lipscomb, executive director of LGBT Detroit, a nonprofit serving Detroit’s LGBT population, used the Wednesday event to make note of the fear and violence the community faces and the lack of educational opportunities and awareness surrounding those issues. Photos are of officials with the city of Detroit and Motor City Pride during a ceremony to raise the rainbow pride flag in honor of LGBT Pride Month in Hart Plaza, in Detroit, June 6, 2018. (Photo: David Guralnick, The Detroit News) Lipscomb told attendees that, for him, the kickoff to June’s pride month is a call to motivate at-risk individuals, stand up and speak out.
"We LGBT people must stand with others to defeat poverty, racism and regionalism," he said. "I’m talking to us. This is a call and a demand for action amongst us. Let’s share our strategies of success with our brothers and sisters who stand on the right side of history."
Jones echoed Lipscomb’s message.
"It is time to say it is time out for discrimination. Time out for hate crimes. Time out for judging people," she said. "We can accomplish more if we join together, accept people for who they are and what they do." Stephanie White, executive director of Equality Michigan, speaks during a ceremony to raise the rainbow pride flag in honor of LGBT Pride Month in Hart Plaza, in Detroit, June 6, 2018. The city’s police department also has made efforts in recent years to improve its relationship with LGBT community members, appointing Detroit Police Officer Dani Woods as its LGBT liaison officer.
"For some this may be just another moment for the LGBTQ-plus community, but for us it is a significant yet pivotal moment in Detroit that displays our citizens, our law enforcement and our workers as an inclusive city," Woods said.
YouTube users claim that the video-sharing platform is allowing anti-LGBT ads on its platform YouTube has been accused of preventing videos that contain LGBT+ related words from making money, by popular users of the video-sharing platform.
At the same time they have also claimed that the video streaming were running adverts for gay conversion therapy and companies that were vocal in their criticism of the LGBT+ community.
Trans activist and vlogger Chase Ross was the latest to criticise the firm, following similar complaints by other members of the LGBT community like Tyler Oakley and Stevie Boebi. Read more "My videos are being age-restricted, they’re being demonetised, they’re being not advertiser friendly and I’m getting a strike because my content is LGBT related, especially trans-related," Mr Ross said in a video posted to YouTube itself.
He shared screenshots showing the process of publishing a video, which appear to show one of his videos being marked as "not available for most advertisers" when he added the term ‘transgender’ to the title.
Mr Ross had previously made a video expressing his fears that his channel may be deleted for having his content flagged. He noted the timing of the recent issues as coinciding with YouTube’s own efforts to promote Pride Month – the annual LGBT+ celebration that takes place around the world.
YouTube claims that it does not have a list of LGBT-related words that trigger demonetisation and says it is constantly evaluating our systems to ensure they are enforcing its policies without any bias.
"We use machine learning to evaluate content against our advertiser guidelines," a spokesperson for YouTube told The Independent . "Sometimes our systems get it wrong, which is why we’ve encouraged creators to appeal. Successful appeals ensure that our systems get better and better.”
The spokesperson also addressed accusations that anti-LGBT ads were being played on videos made by LGBT+ channels.
“We have policies against ads on YouTube that incite hatred or promote discrimination, and all ads that run on the platform have to comply with these policies," the spokesperson said.
"Even when an ad does not violate our policies, we understand that creators may not want ads from certain advertisers appearing on their videos. That’s why we give creators the ability to block ads from an advertiser in their AdSense account… In the meantime, we are looking at ways to improve our policies going forward.”
The latest campaign has targeted the US over its discriminatory blood-letting laws. (FCB/GMHC) A new awareness initiative has been launched to highlight blood donation inequality facing gay, bisexual and transgender men across the world.
The latest effort is part of the Blood Equality campaign – launched by advertising agency FCB Health and the Gay Men’s Health Crisis – last year.
The initiative sees the rainbow Pride flag adorned with a blood collection bag and tube. Each of these blood bags is stitched in the colours of a country that discriminates against gay, bisexual and transgender men from donating blood.
The countries the campaign has targeted are the U.S., Australia, Canada, Brazil and Germany – although there are more countries with discriminatory blood donation laws against gay or bisexual men, and transgender people. The flag for Australia. (FCB/GMHC) The organisers of the campaign said they want to “bring attention” to discriminatory laws and “inspire reform.”
They said: “Many countries, including the U.S., Australia, Canada, Brazil and Germany, endorse the fight for equality in marriage, schools, the workplace and housing, yet discriminatory criteria for blood donation remain.
“This altering of the traditional flag design, compounded with the use of exposed thread and stitching, powerfully brings to life the juxtaposition between LGBTQ Pride and discrimination.
“Ultimately, these flags aim to highlight cultural hypocrisy as a call to action, and unite these countries in an effort to advance blood equality on a larger scale.”
Each flag has a powerful message directed towards the country it addresses. (FCB/GMHC) Messages include: “In Australia donating blood only hurts if you’re gay,” and: “The U.S. has tested positive for discrimination.”
Other slogans are: “Canada accepts gay love, but not gay blood,” and “How can Brazil be so open-minded and closed-minded at the same time?”
Kelsey Louie, CEO of GMHC, said: “We want to restore the fundamental right to donate blood, and make it a more equitable process across the board.
“Current donation policies stem from fear and outdated stigmas surrounding sexual orientation, when they should instead be based solely on testing and scientific risk assessments.” (FCB/GMHC) The flag addressed to Germany reads: “In Germany, not every Type O is a universal donor.”
Many countries across the worldwide still require gay, bisexual and transgender men to be celibate for a certain period of time – in the US and Canada this is 12 months – before they can give blood.
A study by UCLA Williams Institute study in 2014 found that lifting the time limit in the US could save up to a million lives annually, with an estimated 850,000 pints of blood.
In other countries, like Brazil, gay or bisexual men are banned outright from giving blood.
Last month, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said he was “upset” by restrictions that prevent all sexually active gay men from donating blood – and implied he wanted to change the law.
In the UK, men are required to not have gay sex for three months to be eligible to donate blood , after the government relaxed restrictions last year. (FCB/GMHC) The campaign addresses the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) lifetime ban on gay, bisexual and transgender male blood donors, which now requires a 12-month period of celibacy prior to donation.
Rich Levy, chief creative officer of FCB Health, said: “This creative partnership provides us with an important – and unique – platform to advocate for policy reform, change behaviour and make a lasting difference through our work.”
The blood flags initiative will be launched across FCB’s social media channels in the run up to World Blood Donor Day on June 14, and also featured at the GMHC headquarters.
7 US Pride festivals off the beaten track that will blow you away This gay guy’s the Senior Vice President of NYC & Company and has great tips for an epic NYC Pride Don’t miss these LGBTI documentaries and films at Sheffield Doc/Fest Pride Month is officially in full swing – and the grand, Kylie Minogue -infused climax of NYC Pride, one of America’s biggest and best, is just around the corner.
Not to mention WorldPride, which makes its American debut in June 2019… It’ll come around before you know it!
But first things first, this year’s Pride March takes place on Sunday 24 June. And as LGBTQ travelers from around the world descend on the city for the main event, we recently sat down with Chris Heywood, Senior Vice President of NYC & Company, for insider tips on how to have the perfect Pride… What are you most looking forward to about Pride this year?
It’s going to be extraordinarily exciting, because of the momentum that’ll be following it. It’ll be the one-year countdown to hosting WorldPride!
We’ll be looking at, understanding and appreciating the historical significance of why New York City as such an important LGBTQ destination.
We really want to use this as an opportunity to reenforce that, and make sure people around the world know that New York City is the preeminent LGBTQ destination. That we welcome the world and embrace LGBTQ culture, and the subcultures that come with it. So looking more at the transgender sector, and really embracing that. You’ll see that in some of the content we’re creating. We’re really excited to have this, and be the first US destination to host it. In laymen’s terms, what are you guys doing to help with next year’s event?
We are partnering with the Heritage of Pride organization to help them really market this as one of those historical events, to really use it as a hook to really encourage people to make 2019 a year-long pilgrimage to come to New York City. But we’re providing a lot of support to Heritage of Pride in the way of marketing, utilizing our own marketing assets, and our industry prowess and understanding, and making sure that they are connected to the global travel industry through our global network.
We’re partners with them and we couldn’t be more excited. We stood by them at WorldPride in Madrid, and we’ve been actively communicating with them. I mean, they’re in charge of putting on the events, we’re a marketing organization – but we are partnering with them and using this historical anniversary as a way to lift both of us up. What would you suggest to an NYC newbie for the perfect Pride weekend, outside of the official events?
New York City is one of those places where [LGBTQ] travelers are going to want to access anything and everything that people come and enjoy, whether that’s Broadway, arts and culture, the great hotels and attractions. But I think a couple insider tips I’d give: pay a visit to the Stonewall National Monument, in the West Village, and some of the original gay bars in the West Village.
I call the West Village home, I’m right in the heart – I live right off Christopher Street! I have an affection and affinity for it. It’s where a lot of the historic events have unfolded. Like, when gay marriage was passed in New York, everyone gathered near Stonewall. So I definitely think go to the Stonewall Inn for a drink, see the monument in Christopher Park, and see the gay bars along Christopher Street; the origins of LGBTQ history in New York.
Also I would say, go to Chelsea – Chelsea’s still really popular – and Hell’s Kitchen. Hell’s Kitchen is the center of gay culture in New York. All the great bars and a lot of the gay population is in Hell’s Kitchen, but they’re also all over the city. People will feel comfortable wherever they are. Do you have a favorite bar yourself?
That’s a good question! I particularly like Industry, up in Hell’s Kitchen. It’s always very festive! I actually visited The Stonewall Inn recently for the very first time. I passed it many, many times, but went and had a drink there recently. It was a lot of fun. But I go to all these places in the West Village. Big Gay Ice Cream is right there, Via Carota is next door, an excellent restaurant. Marie’s Crisis is a great hangout and piano bar. It’s just so cozy, the West Village. It has so much charm – the tree-lined streets, the brownstones. Have the West Village as your epicenter of any visit!
For more information, visit Nycgo.com/lgbt .
For more information about NYC Pride, visit the official website .