June, 2022 News (78 Articles with 73,299 total views)

On the cover of the print edition for June, 2022 Volunteers from NWPA Pride Alliance, Erie Gay News, Greater Erie Alliance for Equality (GEAE), Transfamily of NWPA, Central Outreach Erie, and Compton’s Table at food drive on April 30, 2022. Photo by Michael Mahler

This began publication in December 2002 after a hiatus

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Calendar & Upcoming Events

Calendar of Local GLBT Events

Up to date listing of events and meetings.

Local and Regional News

NYS Legislature Passes Bill Requiring Insurance Companies to Cover Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis and Post-Exposure Prophylaxis

NYS Legislature Passes Bill Requiring Insurance Companies to Cover Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis and Post-Exposure Prophylaxis
Albany, NY - On the first day of Pride Month, the New York State Legislature passed bill A807/S688, sponsored by Assembly Member Daniel O'Donnell and Senator Brad Hoylman, requiring insurance companies to cover pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) and post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP). The legislation is part of a comprehensive plan to increase access to these revolutionary medicines, and to assist in the fight against the HIV epidemic.
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Pride Ashtabula County on June 11

The LGBTQ Coalition of Ashtabula County, Inc, Ashtabula's newly claimed nonprofit, will be hosting the second annual Pride Ashtabula County.  The celebration will be held on June 11, 2022, from 11 am-5 pm at the Ashtabula County Fairgrounds.  The day is jam-packed with entertainment from Jungle Terry, singer/songwriter Sue Hagen, a talent show, and several drag shows hosted by Ashtabula's own Mona Lotz.  There will be over 100 vendors onsite featuring local artisans and crafters along with any amazing food stands for guests to enjoy. For more information visit www.lgbtqashtabulaco.org
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LGBTQIA & Allies Happy Hour at Julian's Bar & Grill on June 22

The NWPA Pride Alliance hosts a monthly LGBTQIA and Allies Happy Hour on the fourth Wednesday of each month. Join us at Julian's Bar & Grill, 299 Chestnut Street in Meadville, beginning at 5:30 PM. For more details contact Brett Staskiewicz via Facebook or at (814) 720-1737. All are welcome!
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Pride Night at the Seawolves on June 23

NWPA Pride is happy to announce the return of Pride Night at the Erie Seawolves on Thursday June 23rd 2022. The Seawolves will be planning the Bowie Baysocks. First pitch is at 6:05Pm from UPMC Park in downtown Erie. A special shirt and ticket package will be available when purchasing your ticket through NWPAPride.org. The ticket and shirt combo will need to be picked up from the Will Call ticket window. Shirt/ticket combos are limited purchase early to guarantee availability. In the event of weather cancelation ticket will be redeemable for any other game the remainder of the season (subject to availability).
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The Living Room in Meadville Downtown Mall

The Living Room is a drug and alcohol-free safe environment designed to support positive connections among members of Crawford County's recovery community.
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Drag Queen Bingo hosted by Alysin Wonderland at Voodoo, June 1

Your host Alysin Wonderland will be joined by Danyel Vasquez and Rebecca Mae to get your Pride month started with some fun and cash prizes for a Pride Month Drag Bingo Kickoff on Wednesday, June 1, 2022, at Voodoo Brewing, 716 State St, Erie PA. Doors will open at 5:30, and join us at 6 pm for a Meet and Greet with the cast and games to begin at 6:30 pm Tickets are $25.00 in advance and $30.00 at the door. You must be 18+ to attend. Tickets are available at NWPAPride.org.
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Pride Guide 2022

Pride Guide 2022
e check out the many wonderful Pride events in our region!
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Volunteers for the Erie Gay News Pride Festival Table on June 25

Volunteers for the Erie Gay News Pride Festival Table on June 25
Want to lend us a hand? We are requesting volunteers to operate the Erie Gay News table during the 2022 Erie Pride Festival on June 25 in Perry Square! Feel free to join us at Perry Square before or during the Pride festival on Saturday, June 25th. Our booth will be located on the west side of the square. If you are interested, set up for the event will be held at the location of the booth, from 11 AM to 12:30 PM. The festival parade arrives at Perry Square around 12:30 pm. All setup must be complete by 12:30 pm. To volunteer to help staff the Erie Gay News info table at Pride, please email Michael Mahler at info@eriegaynews.com or call (814) 456-9833.
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Warren County Pride on June 18

On Saturday, June 18, from 11 AM to 7 PM, Warren County, PA, celebrates LGBTQIA+ diversity in Betts Park! The queer community welcomes straight allies, friends, family, and the general public to this fun-filled day! Activities, contests, games, speakers, music, dancing, vendors, food, giveaways, and camaraderie.
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Crawford County Pride on July 9 Looking for Vendors and Exhibitors

Crawford County Pride on July 9 Looking for Vendors and Exhibitors
Crawford County Pride on 07/09/2022 is looking for more vendors and non-profits, but space is starting to fill. We are ahead of our normal planning and are excited to have the largest event so far, barring hurricane weather. Please feel free to contact Glenn Tuttle with any questions. Glenn can be reached for free vendor/non-profit spaces at glenntuttle@icloud.com, FB messenger, or (814)853-9472.
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Compton's Closet Second Location

Compton's Table will be opening a second location of Compton's Closet inside PACA, 1505 State St, Erie Pa - a free resource for queer youth and young adults that provides gender-affirming clothing, accessories, and hygiene products- in June. Stay tuned for our opening day by following us on Instagram @Comptons_Tableour Facebook page, or on our website www.ComptonsTable.org
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Equality Texas Releases Video for International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia, and Transphobia

Equality Texas Releases Video for International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia, and Transphobia
On the International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia, and Transphobia, Equality Texas announces the launch of a short animated video created by Free Lion Productions that highlights the struggle of Texas trans kids and their families. For the past two years trans kids have been the target of political attacks, and lawmakers have been abusing their authority to bully health care providers from caring for their trans patients. Children's health care decisions should be a collaboration between parents, their doctors, and the patients themselves. This video illustrates the pain that parents and trans kids feel when politicians insert themselves into the doctor's office.
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LGBTQIA+ Food Drive on April 30

The local LGBTQIA+ community came together to collect food for the Second Harvest Food Bank of NWPA. The drive was held at Central Outreach Erie, 3104 State St, Erie, PA, on Saturday, April 30. the group collected 781 pounds and $330 in cash. All food and cash will be used locally to help those in need. A group of volunteers put this event together from NWPA Pride Alliance, Erie Gay News, Greater Erie Alliance for Equality (GEAE), Transfamily of NWPA, Central Outreach Erie, and Compton’s Table. This is the largest community-based food drive of the year for the food bank. If you missed the food drive, you can still donate by reaching out to the Second Harvest Food Bank. We will be holding a Give Back Drive in later summer - more info to come.
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Cattle Call Auditions for the Erie Playhouse productions of Kinky Boots and The Sound Of Music

Cattle Call Auditions for the Erie Playhouse productions of Kinky Boots and The Sound Of Music
Cattle Call Auditions for the Erie Playhouse productions of Kinky Boots and The Sound Of Music Adults will be held on May 23 and 24 at 6:30 pm at the Erie Playhouse Rehearsal Hall at 1158 East 12th Street.
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Jamestown Pride is June 11

Jamestown will kick off Pride on June 10th at Sneakers, 100 Harriston St, Jamestown NY. with a burlesque show from the Laced Up Ladies! Then, on Saturday, June 11, we will have performers, games, resources, and events throughout the Pride Market.
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Erie's LGBTQIA Social Hour at Underdog BBQ on June 8

NW PA Pride is proud to partner with Underdog BBQ to provide a safe space for the LGBTQIA+ community on Wednesday, June 8, from 6 pm-9 pm. Underdog BBQ will have food and drink specials (both with and without alcohol). Weather permitting, the Slushy Shed will be open along with the outdoor patio. The event is open to all ages. We look forward to welcoming everyone.
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Drive Your Pride 2022 on June 26

On Sunday, June 26, join NW PA Pride Alliance for a Pride-filled Drive around the beautiful Presque Isle State Park!
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Erie Pride Parade and Pride Festival on June 25

Pridefest will take place this year on June 25. We will gather at The Zone Dance Club on W 18th St from 11-12 and step off to march to Perry Square at 12. Once at Perry Square, we will have info tables and vendors and performances by local drag performers and other performers on the Safe Journey Mainstage. Free HIV/STI testing and health screenings will be available in the Central Outreach Erie Health and Wellness Zone. Finally, we will include a first-ever Youth Zone, thanks to our Partners at the Erie Playhouse. This zone will include inflatable children's rides, a story corner, etc.
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Ashtabula Pride T-Shirts On Sale Through May 21

Order your Pride 2022 T-shirts from LGBTQ+ Coalition of Ashtabula County at https://ashtabula-pride.spiritsale.com/. Shirts are only available by purchasing on the site and will be until May 21, 2022. They will have locations designated for pickup.
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Presidential Memorandum on Advancing the Human Rights of LGBTQI+ Persons Around the World

May 2, 2022 - Last week, the Biden-Harris Administration released the first ever public report on the U.S. government's implementation of the February 4, 2021 Presidential Memorandum on Advancing the Human Rights of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, and Intersex Persons Around the World. This historic report provides detailed, transparent reporting from U.S. government agencies engaging abroad in efforts to protect and promote the human rights of LGBTQI+ persons around the world. Through this report, the U.S. government shares what it has done to achieve progress towards the goals of the Presidential Memorandum. This report aims to inspire other governments to undertake similar actions to advance the human rights of LGBTQI+ persons and integrate their needs across foreign assistance and foreign policy.
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LGBT Funds of The Erie Community Foundation Request for Proposals Deadline Is May 28

The LGBT Funds of The Erie Community Foundation were established to provide financial support to nonprofits that address the unique challenges faced by the LGBTQ+ community. The LGBT Community Endowment, a component fund of this group, is hereby issuing this Request for Proposals. Applications must be submitted by May 28, 2022 at https://www.erielgbtfunds.org/programs/grants.
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Deadline for June 2022 print edition (issue #319) of Erie Gay News is Sunday, May 15, comes out Tuesday, May 24, Includes Pride Guide!

Deadline for June 2022 print edition (issue #319) of Erie Gay News is Sunday, May 15, comes out Tuesday, May 24, Includes Pride Guide!
For the next Erie Gay News (issue # 319, cover-dated for June 2022), please send in online events, news items, and other info for late May 2022 and beyond by Sunday, May 15. We expect that the next edition will come out on Tuesday, May 24. This issue will feature our Pride Guide for regional Pride events!
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Entertainment and Travel

All An Act Theater Presents Harvey June 10-26

All An Act Theater, 652 W 17th St, Erie PA 16502, presents Harvey by Mary Chase from June 10th to 26th. The play is directed by Larry Lewis, and stars Jawn Gross, Kirsten McCain, Allie Mitchell, Michael Nasca, Shantel Kay, Andre Concepcion, Josh Herrera, Michael Meyer, Dennis Karle, Char Newport, and Jenn Puz.
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Marvel's Voices: Iceman #1 Launches on Marvel Unlimited on June 1

Just in time for Pride Month, Marvel's Voices is coming to Marvel Unlimited! The anthology series renowned for its fresh take on "the world outside your window" launches its first ongoing on Wednesday, June 1. With a rotation of story arcs and one-shots by a diverse set of celebrated creators, every fan will find something to love in the newest comic to take Marvel Unlimited by storm!
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Summer Gallery Night Set for June 17th with Expanded Hours

ERIE, Pa. - The Erie Art Museum continues the 2022 Gallery Night series on Friday, June 17th. 10 locations will be open from 5 pm-8 pm and another 8 locations will be open 7 pm-10 pm, including the Erie Art Museum with a performance by The Groove. Many local businesses and galleries from both downtown and all over Erie county will be participating.
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True Colors: LGBTQ+ Our Stories, Our Songs

True Colors: LGBTQ+ Our Stories, Our Songs
WASHINGTON, D.C. (May 13, 2022) - Nouveau Productions and PBS today announced a new collaboration, just in time for Pride Month. TRUE COLORS: LGBTQ+ OUR STORIES, OUR SONGS celebrates the stories and music that make us who we are. Offering a unique look at the history of the LGBTQ+ community in the United States, the special shares real-life stories of hope, resilience and triumph from people across the country, artistically represented through thematically relevant music. Exploring the personal journeys of remarkable individuals, the program connects these heartfelt stories with the history of the LGBTQ+ movement.TRUE COLORS: LGBTQ+ OUR STORIES, OUR SONGS is part of special programming premiering on PBS stations beginning Saturday, June 4, 2022 (check local listings). It will also be available for free streaming on PBS.org and the PBS Video App.
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FIREBIRD - Available on Digital & VOD June 3, 2022

FIREBIRD - Available on Digital & VOD June 3, 2022
The controversial drama, Firebird arrives on EST & VOD in the U.S. and Canada June 3 from Lionsgate. The film follows a handsome, soulful young soldier who embarks on a clandestine sexual affair with a charming ace fighter pilot assigned to his base at the height of 1970's Communist rule. Directed and cowritten by Peeter Rebane (Tashi DelekRobbie Williams: Fans Journey to Tallinn) and cowritten by actor Tom Prior (Kingsman: The Secret Service, The Theory of Everything), Firebird will be available for the suggested retail price of $14.99 for Digital and $5.99 for Video on Demand.
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Marvel's Voices: Pride #1 Introduces a Spectacular New Mutant Hero!

New York, NY- May 11, 2022 - As part of Marvel's ongoing Marvel's Voices series, readers everywhere will soon meet ESCAPADE in MARVEL'S VOICES: PRIDE #1! Joining fellow LGBTQIA+ Marvel heroes this June, Escapade will debut in the book's central story, written by acclaimed author Charlie Jane Anders and drawn by artist duo and Eisner-nominated cartoonists Ro Stein and Ted Brandt, with colors by Tamra Bonvillain.
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"THE ADVENTURES OF PRISCILLA, QUEEN OF THE DESERT" back in theaters, Nationwide, for Pride Month!

'THE ADVENTURES OF PRISCILLA, QUEEN OF THE DESERT' back in theaters, Nationwide, for Pride Month!
Iconic Events Releasing, the fastest-growing name in event cinema, announced today that it is kicking off Pride Month with a special nationwide rerelease of MGM's classic film The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert. Screenings will take place in select theaters nationwide on Thursday, June 2. Moviegoers can find locations and showtimes at priscillamovieintheaters.com.
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Erie Art Museum Unveils Photographic Portraits From Permanent Collection in New Exhibition

ERIE, Pa. - A new photography exhibition, Connecting with the Collection: Photographic Portraits, opens this Thursday, May 12th, 2022. The exhibition is co-curated by guest curator Brian Cohen and Executive Director Laura Do
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Pride Journey - Small Town Texas Roadtrip

I had a trip to Texas planned prior to the introduction of the anti-transgender bills in state Congress. I considered cancelling the trip completely, however I realized that there are thousands of LGBTQ people living in the state who would be negatively affected by boycotts and travel cancellations, so I decided to forge ahead. Texas is a red state with multiple blue dots including Austin, Houston, Dallas, and others.
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Local Faces and Photos

G2H2 at Molly Brannigan's on May 6

Friends enjoying a great time at Gay Guy/Girl Happy Hour (G2H2) at Molly Brannigan’s, 506 State Street, Erie PA, on May 6, 2022. G2H2 meets the first Friday of each month at a different establishment.
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Political, Activism and Legal

Pennsylvania Senate Wastes Time Attacking Transgender Kids By Passing Bill It Knows Governor Will Veto

HARRISBURG - June 7, 2022 - Instead of working on real solutions to the problems facing the Commonwealth, the Pennsylvania Senate took time out of its schedule today to pass a discriminatory bill that targets a marginalized population of students - transgender girls and women - knowing full well that Gov. Tom Wolf will veto the legislation if it reaches his desk.
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Human Rights Campaign Endorses Josh Shapiro for Governor of Pennsylvania

HARRISBURG - June 6, 2022 - Today the Human Rights Campaign PAC (HRC PAC) announced its endorsement of Attorney General Josh Shapiro for governor of Pennsylvania. HRC PAC is committed to engaging our volunteers, members and supporters to mobilize the 3 million Equality Voters in Pennsylvania in support of Shapiro and other pro-equality candidates up and down the ballot.
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For Pride Month, OUT LEADERSHIP releases 4th Annual STATE LGBTQ+ BUSINESS CLIMATE INDEX, ranking all 50 states on LGBTQ+ Equality

NEW YORK Out Leadership, the premier global network for LGBTQ+ business leaders and companies, today unveiled the 4th annual State LGBTQ+ Business Climate Index for 2022. The Index is a ranking from highest to lowest of all 50 states as it relates to legal, political, emotional support, health, business and other parameters for LGBTQ+ Americans.
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White House LGBTQI+ Engagement: Happy Pride Month!

Happy Pride! The Biden-Harris Administration is ready to celebrate Pride month and to build on actions the we have taken to ensure that everyone-no matter who they are or whom they love-has an equal place in our country. This month, will be focused on spotlighting the voices of LGBTQI+ people across America, especially our LGBTQI+ children and families.
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Get the Facts on Gender-Affirming Care

Everyone deserves to be treated with dignity and respect. But across the country, politicians desperate to gain or hold onto power and their allies in the media are attacking LGBTQ+ people and making it impossible for LGBTQ+ youth - particularly transgender and non-binary youth --to be their authentic selves. Bills in statehouses across the country aim to take away access to gender-affirming care -- medically necessary, safe, health care backed by decades of research and supported by every major medical association representing over 1.3 million US doctors. And some even accuse parents of transgender children who want to transition of child abuse.
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Human Rights Campaign Fact Sheet: Lesbian, Bisexual, Queer Women Who Have Been Pregnant Are More Likely to Need Abortion Services

WASHINGTON - June 2, 2022 -Today, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Foundation, the educational arm of the nation's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) civil rights organization, launched a new fact sheet on LGBTQ+ people & Roe v. Wade. This new resource highlights the importance of the protections enshrined in Roe v. Wade to members of the LGBTQ+ community. The data shows that LGBTQ+ women who have been pregnant are more likely to have had unwanted or mistimed pregnancies than heterosexual women and are more likely to need abortion services as well. Furthermore, their pregnancies are more likely to be the result of violence.
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Human Rights Campaign and SHOWTIME® Launch Third Year of QUEER TO STAY, an LGBTQ+ Small Business Initiative

WASHINGTON - June 3, 2022 - Today, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the nation's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) civil rights organization, and SHOWTIME announced the third consecutive year of "QUEER TO STAY: An LGBTQ+ Business Preservation Initiative" (QTS) that aims to uplift and preserve small businesses that serve the LGBTQ+ community; particularly businesses that are owned by or empower LGBTQ+ people of color, women and the transgender community. This year, the initiative is expanding its pool of funding to $250,000 to be distributed among at least 25 small businesses.
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ACLU-PA Statement on Settlement Between Allegheny County Jail and Jules Williams

PITTSBURGH - June 2, 2022 - Today, the American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania and the law firm O'Brien Coleman & Wright announced a settlement between Allegheny County and Jules Williams, bringing to a close Ms. Williams' federal civil rights lawsuit over sexual assault she suffered at the Allegheny County Jail in 2015. In the settlement, Allegheny County agreed to pay $300,000 in damages to Ms. Williams, who is a transgender woman.
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Florida Health Officials Again Advance Plans to Attack Transgender Floridians, Reject Consensus of Medical Professionals

TALLAHASSEE - June 2, 2022 - Following up on a thoroughly discredited preliminary report in April, Florida's Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA) on Thursday released an expanded report that repeats many of the same fallacies in the name of rejecting the medical consensus on gender affirming care. In response, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) - the nation's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) civil rights organization - condemned the move as a transparent ploy to create controversy, ignore medical best practices, and refuse to provide age-appropriate, medically-necessary care to some Floridians for purely partisian, discriminatory reasons.
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Lambda Legal Files Second EEOC Complaint against Dallas Arboretum on Behalf of Terminated Employee

(Dallas, TX, June 1, 2022) -- Late yesterday, Lambda Legal filed a second complaint with the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) against the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Society, Inc. on behalf of a second former employee who was demoted and then fired after he revealed that he was gay. Also, as with the first complaint, Lambda Legal filed a Human Relations Discrimination Complaint (HRDC) with the City of Dallas under its "Unlawful Discriminatory Practices" ordinance which prohibits discrimination in the workplace based on sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression.
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ICYMI: Human Rights Campaign Responds to New Gallup Poll Confirming the Growing Support of Marriage Equality

WASHINGTON - June 1, 2022 -Today, Gallup released a new poll that showed a growing percentage of people (71%) in the U.S. support same-sex marriage. In response, Human Rights Campaign Legal Director Sarah Warbelow released the following statement: "This new data not only shows the continuing growth of support for same-sex marriage but also underscores what we have long known-anti-LGBTQ+ politicians and activists attacking marriage equality do not reflect the beliefs of the nation and are working contrary to public opinion," said Sarah Warbelow, Human Rights Campaign Legal Director. "Notably, the Supreme Court doesn't take public opinion into account when makings its decision; the Court will override decades of precedent if it strikes down Roe, despite the fact that a majority of Americans support access to abortion care. If that does indeed happen, it will likely embolden state legislatures - who have already been introducing and passing anti-LGBTQ+ legislation at a record pace - to continue to test the limits of court recognized LGBTQ+ equality. "
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Wisconsin Supreme Court Hears Case About Forced Disclosure of Students' Use of Different Names or Pronouns In The Madison Metropolitan School District

MADISON - May 24, 2022 - The ACLU of Wisconsin and the national ACLU appeared before the Wisconsin Supreme Court today for oral arguments in Doe v Madison Metropolitan School District- a case in which the organizations are representing three student Gender and Sexuality Alliances in the district in defending the district's policy of granting students the autonomy to use different names or pronouns at school without it being involuntarily disclosed to their parents.
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ACLU-PA Statement on Senate Committee Vote on Bill to Ban Transgender Athletes From School Sports

HARRISBURG - May 24, 2022 - Today, the Senate Education Committee passed legislation to bar transgender girls and women from participating in scholastic sports based on their gender identity. Governor Tom Wolf has committed to vetoing the legislation, and the bill, House Bill 972, is opposed by a long list of advocates for trans equality and women and girls' civil rights.
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May 2022 Updates to Equality Maps

MAP's interactive LGBTQ Equality Maps provide a comprehensive look at the current state of laws and policies impacting LGBTQ people across the United States. The Equality Maps offer a state-by-state comparison of the policy landscape and gaps in protections for LGBTQ people across the country.
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Human Rights Campaign Condemns Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt For Signing Anti-Equality Legislation In Violation Of Federal Civil Rights Law

OKLAHOMA CITY - May 25, 2022 - Today, The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) - the nation's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) civil rights organization - condemned Governor Kevin Stitt's signature of legislation, S.B. 615, a bill copying other efforts - most recently in Alabama - to discriminate against LGBTQ+ youth in schools. Specifically, the bill puts Oklahoma in a small and infamous group of states that have chosen to defy federal civil rights law by forbidding transgender youth to access restrooms consistent with their gender identity. North Carolina and Tennessee both faced swift challenges in the courts for these violations, and Alabama's recent law is only months old. The legislation also adds penalty provisions for schools that fail to comply (5% decrease in funding from the state) and gives parents a cause of action if they believe the law has been violated.
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Human Rights Campaign Honors International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia (IDAHOBIT) by Highlighting Impacts of Global Small Grants Program

WASHINGTON - May 17, 2022 - Today, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the nation's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) civil rights organization, is commemorating International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia (IDAHOBIT) by celebrating the innovative outcomes of the second year of HRC Foundation's Global Small Grants Program, which supported 20 initiatives to advance LGBTQ+ equality in 20 countries.
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Human Rights Campaign Foundation Files Amicus Brief in Carpenter v. James, in Support of Business & Corporate Interest in LGBTQ+ Inclusion

WASHINGTON - May 17, 2022 - Today, the Human Rights Campaign Foundation, the educational arm of the nation's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) civil rights organization, as co-counsel with Steptoe & Johnson LLP, filed an amicus brief before the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit on behalf of a group of diverse businesses. The case, Carpenter v. James, involves a wedding photographer in New York who is effectively seeking permission to turn away same-sex couples and to advertise that she will not provide services to same-sex weddings. The argument before the Court addresses the scope of protections against discrimination for LGBTQ+ patrons seeking goods or services under New York State Human Rights Law and Civil Rights Law.
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Tennessee Anti-Trans Restroom Sign Law Struck Down

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - May 16, 2022 - A federal judge today struck down a Tennessee law that required businesses and other entities that allow transgender people to use the public restroom that matches their gender to post a government-prescribed warning sign.
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Statement on the Passing of Urvashi Vaid, Activist and Past Task Force Executive Director

WASHINGTON, DC - May 14, 2022 - Legendary attorney, LGBTQ activist, and author Urvashi Vaid, known for her extensive career an advocate for LGBTQ rights, women's rights, anti-war efforts, immigration justice and many other social causes, died today at age 63 in her home in New York City. She was the Executive Director of the National LGBTQ Task Force from 1989- 1992 and served prior to that as Media Director.
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Judge Halts Alabama Law Criminalizing Parents for Obtaining Essential Medical Care for their Transgender Children

WASHINGTON - May 14, 2022 -An Alabama federal district court judge has issued a ruling blocking enforcement of Alabama SB 184 while a legal challenge to the law proceeds. SB 184 criminalizes parents who seek to get essential medical care for their transgender children's needs. It provides up to 10 years in prison as penalty for anyone, including doctors and parents, who assists in getting the care these young people need.
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ACLU, Lambda Legal Statement on Texas Supreme Court Ruling Partially Upholding Injunction Blocking Investigations into Families of Transgender Youth

AUSTIN, Texas - May 13, 2022 - The Texas Supreme Court issued a ruling this morning that upholds part of an appeals court order preventing the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) from investigating parents who work with medical professionals to provide their adolescent transgender children with medically necessary health care.
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Breaking: React From National LGBTQ Task Force Action Fund on Women's Health Protection Act (WHPA) Cloture Vote

The statement below can be attributed to Kierra Johnson, Executive Director, National LGBTQ Task Force Action Fund: "Once again, conservative political extremists and Senators from both parties blocked a vote on, let alone passage of the Women's Health Protection Act (WHPA). The final vote was 49 yay, 51 nay. Our Senators, sent to Washington to do the people's work, continue to support filibuster to the detriment of the people who put them office. Here the filibuster rule wrongly enabled a minority of Senators to block what the people of this country need and want. The WHPA is federal legislation - passed by the House on September 24, 2021 - designed to bar states from enacting laws to restrict access to abortion to people who need it.
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Victim Abortion is a Constitutional Right that Must Not Be Eroded: Response to the SCOTUS Draft Ruling, Overturning Roe and Casey

Harrisburg, PA - May 9, 2022 -The Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape and the network of rape crisis centers we represent stand firmly behind choice and the full range of reproductive healthcare options for all people, including birth control, prevention of sexually transmitted diseases, and abortion.
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LGBTQ Legal Rights Organizations Move to Protect California's Trans-Inclusive Incarceration Policy

(May 9, 2022, Fresno, CA) - Today, Lambda Legal, the Transgender Law Center (TLC), and the American Civil Liberties Union Foundation of Southern California (ACLU SoCal) filed a motion to intervene in a lawsuit filed by anti-transgender activists against the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) challenging SB132, the groundbreaking law protecting transgender people incarcerated in the state of California. The three organizations, along with pro-bono co-counsel O'Melveny & Myers, represent the Transgender Gender-Variant & Intersex Justice Project (TGI Justice Project) and four individual plaintiffs currently incarcerated in California prisons.
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Policy Spotlight: Bans on Best Practice Medical Care for Transgender Youth

The recent wave of bans attempting to block best practice medical care for transgender youth has been fertile political ground in an election year. Prior to 2020, not a single state had considered legislation to ban best practice medical care for trans youth. Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, 22 states considered this type of legislation in 2021 with one state, Arkansas, passing such a bill into law. Unfortunately, this trend has only continued this year. According to new research from The Williams Institute, more than 58,000 transgender youth are currently at risk of losing access to best practice medical care due to proposed and enacted state bans and policies.
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HRC Interim President Calls Out Marjorie Taylor Greene, Kay Ivey, Ron Desantis for Hypocrisy in Spreading Anti-LGBTQ+ Misinformation

New York, NY - May 2, 2022 - Saturday night, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the nation's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) civil rights organization, hosted its Greater New York Dinner. The event featured speeches from HRC's interim president Joni Madison, who used her remarks to directly confront the right-wing anti-LGBTQ+ misinformation campaign and called the current moment - when a slate of anti-LGBTQ+ bills are passing in states across the country and misinformation is rampant-- - an "emergency."
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National LGBTQ Task Force on Leak of Draft Scotus Decision to Overturn Roe V. Wade

The following can be attributed to Kierra Johnson, Executive Director, National LGBTQ Task Force: "This morning, the nation woke up to the horrifying news that a draft decision from the Supreme Court related to the overturning of Roe v. Wade signals a full reversal by the court and the potential to undermine and overturn other important decisions impacting LGBTQ people, people of color, and others whose rights were won after the Constitution was ratified.
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LGBTQ+ Lawmakers in 19 States Have or Will Introduce Laws to Protect Trans Kids from Civil and Criminal Penalties When Seeking Gender-Affirming Care

SACRAMENTO - May 3, 2022 - Equality California, Senator Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco), LGBTQ Victory Institute and Planned Parenthood Affiliates of California today announced the national, queer-led rollout of trans refuge state legislation in 16 states. In response to recent executive and legislative action in states like Alabama and Texas, these trans refuge laws will shield trans kids and their families from penalties when seeking gender-affirming care. Click here to read Senator Wiener's bill, which will serve as a template.
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GLAAD Responds to Historic Appointment of Karine Jean-Pierre as White House Press Secretary, the First Black Woman & First Out LGBTQ Person to Serve in the Role

(Thursday, May 5, 2022) GLAAD, the world's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) media advocacy organization, is responding to the announcement that Karine Jean-Pierre will become White House Press Secretary, the first Black woman and first out LGBTQ person to serve in the role. Jean-Pierre previously served as Deputy Press Secretary for the Biden White House.
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Lambda Legal and Black & Pink National Launch "Protected & Served?" Survey

NEW YORK - May 5, 2022 - Today, Lambda Legal, in partnership with Black & Pink National, launched the new Protected & Served? community survey, a study that will explore discrimination and bias against LGBTQ+ people and people living with HIV in the criminal legal system. The findings of the Protected & Served? survey, will inform and support new research, advocacy, litigation, and policy efforts to address the discrimination and abuse experienced by LGBTQ+ people and living with HIV in the criminal legal system, and hold them accountable.
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Health

Give blood in honor of World Blood Donor Day

JUNE 7, 2022- Each year on June 14, the American Red Cross joins blood collection organizations around the world to celebrate World Blood Donor Day, which recognizes the importance of a safe and stable blood supply and the donors who make it possible. Nearly 2.5 million people volunteer to give lifesaving blood and platelets every year with the Red Cross. Eligible donors are encouraged to be part of something big by making an appointment to give blood or platelets this month.
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Volunteers Walk to Fight Suicide

Erie, PA − Suicide is the 13th leading cause of death in Pennsylvania, yet suicide can be prevented. Volunteers from Erie, PA and the surrounding areas are joining the quarter of a million people who are walking in towns across the United States to draw attention to the fight for suicide prevention. The annual Erie Out of the Darkness Community Walk, hosted by the Western Pennsylvania Chapter will be held at 9:30 a.m. on September 24th at the Rotary Pavilion in Presque Isle State Park. This walk supports the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention's education and support programs and its bold goal to reduce the annual U.S. rate of suicide 20 percent by the year 2025.
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Statements by HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra and HHS Principals on Pride Month

Today, after raising the Progress Pride Flag outside of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) headquarters building, HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra and other HHS leaders from across the Department released the following statements to celebrate Pride Month: "Today, and throughout June, we celebrate Pride Month. As part of our celebration, we will continue our work to ensure all our programs and services are equitable and inclusive, and all our LGBTQI+ colleagues know they and their contributions are valued," said Secretary Xavier Becerra. "This year, we have unfortunately seen an alarming rise in state laws and other actions that discriminate against our LGBTQI+ children and youth. To anyone who feels targeted or alone in these times, you are not-we see you, are standing with you, and will do everything we can to protect your health and human services. This Pride Month, we as a Department recommit to ensuring every American can access health care-including gender-affirming care, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity."
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Rock and roll up your sleeve: Give blood or platelets with the Red Cross

[May 23, 2022] - Elvis Presley is known for being the first global rock and roll icon. He was also a blood donor himself! While times have changed, the need for blood has not − donors can leave a lasting legacy themselves by making a lifesaving blood or platelet donation with the American Red Cross.
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Erie County HIV Task Force Updates

Tis the season as we come out of the COVID-19 pandemic, various local groups and entities have been updating themselves. The Erie County HIV Task Force recently introduced a new logo in May in conjunction with their new FreeC2U program where Erie County residents can receive a dozen condoms and lube for free mailed privately to their home. Plus the HIV Task Force has updated their social media handles to 'EriePAHIV' on Facebook and Twitter. Keep an eye out for more information regarding HIV news and activities by following them online and visiting echiv.org. Have questions or interested in joining? Contact Gary the Erie County HIV Task Force Chair at 814-315-3375 or admin@echiv.org.
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HIV Task Force Launches FreeC2U

The Erie County HIV Task Force is excited to announce the start of a FREE home mailing program where Erie County residents can receive safe sex materials by ordering online at condoms.echiv.org. The COVID-19 pandemic brought attention to the lack of accessibility for our community to access condoms when the existing free condom distribution sites were unavailable. Residents 13 years of age and above can visit the online website to select their preference of a dozen free internal or external condoms. Each home mailer pack is sent without indicating the contents to honor your privacy. Along with the condoms, each package includes lube packets, instructions, and print information about local testing/treatment sites as well as how to receive a free HIV home test. Supplies are provided by the funding from the CDC and inventory by the Pennsylvania Department of Health. Visit condoms.echiv.org to order your free dozen today. For more information, contact the Erie County HIV Task Force Chair at 814-315-3375 or admin@echiv.org.
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Blood donations needed ahead of summer

[PITTSBURGH, May 9, 2022] - When schools let out for summer and families set off on vacation, the American Red Cross typically sees a decline in donors, which can impact patient care. It's critically important that donors make an appointment to give now before heading out for summer activities to help maintain a stable blood supply in the coming months. 
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Spirituality and Religion

Trans Seminarian Leadership Cohort Application Open for 2022/2023 - Applications deadline is Monday, June 20, 2022

May 3, 2022 - Washington, DC - For nine years, the Center for LGBTQ and Gender Studies in Religion, the Freedom Center for Social Justice and the National LGBTQ Task Force have sponsored a program for transgender, nonbinary, and gender non-conforming seminarians in the United States. The program's goal is to encourage trans students during their training for religious leadership to complete their degrees, follow their vocation, and embrace the fact that their impact as faith leaders can and should extend beyond their chosen settings for ministry and service to include the welfare of the broader communities in which they live. This is the only program that we are aware of that addresses the unique challenges and gifts of trans seminarians.
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Letters, Columnists and Opinion

Reclaimed Pride?

If you ask any of us who were part of organizing or marshaling that very first Pride in New York in 1970, you would hear one word about it: joy. Yes, it was a protest that came one year after Stonewall, but it was also a celebration of our fighting back. We were celebrating a community that we had begun to build that included organizations which delivered services, information and activities to the LGBT community, services that for the first time were not centered around then-illegal clubs and bars. So Pride actually translates to protest and celebration, and that Pride came from walking out of our West Village, Christopher Street Ghetto and marching publicly uptown to Central Park. We were Out, Loud, and Proud!
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Human Rights Campaign Interim President: This Pride, the LGBTQ+ Community is in Crisis, State of Emergency

WASHINGTON - June 1, 2022 -Today, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the nation's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) civil rights organization, is marking the first day of Pride Month 2022, with an op-ed and video message from Interim President Joni Madison that centers the crisis facing the LGBTQ+ community and emphasizes the importance of activism during Pride.
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Contests

Enter to win Gay Giant graphic novel!

Enter to win Gay Giant graphic novel!
Enter to win Gay Giant graphic novel! To enter the contest, fill out the form here between Tuesday, June 14, and Tuesday, July 5.
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Enter to win A Perfect 10 cookbook!

Enter to win A Perfect 10 cookbook!
Enter to win A Perfect 10 cookbook! To enter the contest, fill out the form here between Tuesday, June 7, and Tuesday, June 28.
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Enter to win From Gay To Z: A Queer Compendium!

Enter to win From Gay To Z: A Queer Compendium!
Enter to win From Gay To Z: A Queer Compendium! To enter the contest, fill out the form here between Friday, June 3, and Friday, June 24.
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Enter to win Mascarpone DVD!

Enter to win Mascarpone DVD!
Enter to win Mascarpone DVD! To enter the contest, fill out the form here between Friday, May 27, and Friday, June 17.
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Enter to win The Fashion Lover!

Enter to win The Fashion Lover!
Enter to win The Fashion Lover! To enter the contest, fill out the form here between Tuesday, May 24 and Tuesday, June 14.
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Miscellaneous

Popular Scams and How to Avoid Them Virtual Workshop by PA Dept of Banking and Securities

On May 26, 2022, George Dillman of the Pennsylvania Department of Banking and Securities presented a virtual workshop on popular scams and how to avoid them. Every day people are getting scammed out of THOUSANDS of dollars by so called "professionals" looking to separate them from their hard-earned money. This presentation introduces us to commonly used tactics, what to look for and how to avoid them.
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