Maine Pediatricians Urge Voters to Reject Question 1

September 22, 2009

from NO on 1/Protect Maine

Citing child welfare and their commitment to support what is best for children, physicians from the Maine Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatricians (AAP) today announced their support for the NO on 1/Protect Maine Equality campaign.

Children who are raised by legally married parents benefit from the legal status granted to their parents. What is good for parents and families is good for children,” said Dr. Jonathan Fanburg, president of the Maine Chapter of the AAP. The Maine Chapter of AAP is opposed to the referendum vote that challenges the marriage equality law.

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American Labor Movement Calls for Full Inclusion of LGBT Workers

September 22, 2009

from AFL-CIO

AFL-CIO Convention Passes Historic Resolution on Diversity

If there were any doubts that the American labor movement stands strongly in favor of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) rights, they were set to rest the minute former United Mine Workers president Richard L. Trumka took the podium last Wednesday as the newly elected President of the AFL-CIO. Speaking at the labor federation’s quadrennial national convention, the feisty third-generation coal miner issued a clear call for the full inclusion of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender voices in the labor movement and American life.

“What does labor want?” Trumka asked the 3,000 elected delegates and guests gathered in Pittsburgh’s David L. Lawrence Convention Center. “We want a nation where it doesn’t matter what the color of your skin is…or what sex or religion you are…or whether you’re gay or straight or what country your family’s from because here, in America, we believe everyone ought to have their chance to step into the winner’s circle.”

Read the full resolution on diversity

Action Alert: Pass ENDA in 2009!

September 22, 2009

Tell Congress to pass the Employment Non-Discrimination Act NOW!

Tomorrow, the House Education and Labor Committee will hold a hearing to discuss ENDA, the federal employment non-discrimination law that would ban discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender Americans. It is past time for Congress to pass ENDA — please take action NOW to help us get the support we need. We must tell our Representatives and Senators how important these protections are to LGBT people.

To pass ENDA in Congress in 2009, we must speak up loud and clear! We must flood their offices with calls and emails!

Contact your Representative and Senators at (202) 224-3121 and ask them to take swift action to pass the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. Do it today. They need to hear that this bill is our top priority.

Suggested voicemail message: My name is _____ and I am a proud resident of (your city/state). I am calling in support of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (H.R. 3017/S. 1584). ENDA protects lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people from job discrimination and it is critically important. Please take swift action to pass ENDA. I can be reached at _______ (provide your phone number). Thank you.

Or send an email to your Representative and Senators. Let them know that workplace discrimination is a real problem that affects real people. LGBT employees work just as hard and contribute just as much as other workers, and should not have to fear losing their job because of discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity.

If you haven’t contacted your Representative and your two Senators, please do it today. If you already have, please do it again. It is up to all who care about equality to pass this bill. ENDA’s time is right now.

In Solidarity,

kate signature

P.S. You can watch the House Education and Labor Committee hearing on ENDA! To watch it live, visit the committee website and click “Live Webcast” on the top right-hand corner of the menu bar. The hearing is scheduled to start at 10 a.m. EST on Wednesday, September 23.

State Group Seeks to Defend Domestic Partner Law

September 22, 2009

by Ryan J. Foley | The Northwestern

A gay rights group will ask the Wisconsin Supreme Court on Tuesday to reject a lawsuit that seeks to invalidate the state’s new domestic partnership law.

Fair Wisconsin said it will seek to intervene in a lawsuit that asks the court to strike down the law giving same-sex couples some spousal benefits. The move is the latest development in a case that has already faced one unexpected delay since its filing July 23.

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Trans Woman Suing Georgia Legislature Will Testify before Congress

September 22, 2009

By Dyana Bagby | Southern Voice

Vandy Beth Glenn, a transgender woman who sued leaders of the Georgia General Assembly in federal court after she was fired from her job as a legislative editor, will testify tomorrow at a hearing for the Employment Nondiscrimination Act before a U.S. House of Representatives committee.

Glenn filed the lawsuit filed July 22, 2008, and is represented by gay and transgender legal group Lambda Legal. The suit names Georgia Speaker of the House Glenn Richardson (R-Hiram); President Pro-Tem of the Senate Eric Johnson (R-Savannah); Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle; Glenn’s supervisor, Robyn Underwood; and General Assembly Legislative Council Sewell Brumby

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“Paramour Provision” Not Needed in Custody Case with Gay Mother, Court Rules

September 22, 2009

By Kate Howard | The Tennessean

A trial judge did not have to include a “paramour provision” in the parenting plan for a gay mother and rule that her daughter couldn’t live with her and her partner, the Tennessee Court of Appeals ruled.

Angel Chandler and her children’s father, Joseph Barker, agreed that Chandler would be the primary parent of their daughter and their son would live with Barker. But a Gibson County judge rejected the agreement and the recommendation of a doctor who agreed with the placement, saying that Tennessee law mandates a “paramour provision”: no overnight visits outside of marriage while the child is present.

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Census: 76% Marry Just Once; New Count for Same-Sex Couples

September 22, 2009

By Sharon Jayson and Jack Gillum | USA Today

Most Americans marry for keeps or, if it doesn’t last, don’t want to repeat the same mistake, according to new Census data that show 76% of those who have ever been married have married just once.

Almost 20% have been married twice and 5% have been married three or more times, finds data released Monday from the American Community Survey of 3 million households.

The survey also found almost 200,000 fewer same-sex couples than the previous year, which Census officials say resulted from data-processing changes. The total number of same-sex couples in 2008 was about 565,000, vs. 754,000 in 2007.

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House Labor Committee to Hold Hearing on the Employment Non-Discrimination Act

September 22, 2009

WASHINGTON – U.S. Rep. George Miller (D-CA), chairman of the House Education and Labor Committee, today announced that on Wednesday, September 23, he will hold the first full committee hearing in the House of Representatives on legislation to prohibit employers from discriminating against employees on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.

The Employment Non-Discrimination Act (H.R. 3017), introduced by Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA), would prohibit employment discrimination, preferential treatment, and retaliation on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity by employers with 15 or more employees. Currently, it is legal to discriminate in the workplace based on sexual orientation in 29 states and in 38 states based on gender identity.

WHAT: Hearing on “H.R. 3017, The Employment Non-Discrimination Act”


    U.S. Rep. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI)
    U.S. Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA)
    Hon. Stuart J. Ishimaru, Acting Commissioner, U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
    William Eskridge, John A. Garver Professor of Jurisprudence, Yale Law School
    Vandy Beth Glenn, fired from her Georgia state legislative job when she told her supervisor she was transitioning from male to female
    Camille Olson, partner, Seyfarth Shaw LLP
    Craig Parshall, senior vice president and general counsel, National Religious Broadcasters Association
    Rabbi David Saperstein, director, the Religious Action Center
    Brad Sears, executive director, Williams Institute, UCLA School of Law
    Other witnesses TBA

WHEN: Wednesday, September 23, 2009, 10:00 a.m. ET

WHERE: House Education and Labor Committee Hearing Room2175 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, D.C.

WATCH: Watch the House Education and Labor Committee hearing on ENDA! Visit and click on “Live Webcast” on the right of the menu bar. The committee hearing is scheduled to start at 10am EST.

NCLR: Equal Access to Healthcare and Reproductive Rights are Civil Rights

September 22, 2009

Watch: Something Terrible is Happening! From with Will Ferrell and Friends

posted with vodpod

Learn more about NCLR’s healthcare advocacy work

Groundbreaking Think Tank to Address Equal Opportunity for Transgender Student-Athletes

September 22, 2009

A groundbreaking think tank sponsored by the National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR) in partnership with the Women’s Sports Foundation Initiative: It Takes a Team! Education Campaign for LGBT Issues in Sport will gather national sports leaders, legal experts, and policymakers to address equal opportunity for transgender student-athletes. As increasing numbers of young people identify as transgender in high school or college, the convening will provide an opportunity to identify best practices and develop model policies for high school and collegiate athletic leaders to ensure the full inclusion of transgender student-athletes.

“NCLR is pleased to join the Women’s Sports Foundation in our second national think tank addressing the equitable treatment of LGBT student-athletes,” said NCLR Sports Project Director Helen Carroll. “By bringing together leaders in athletics and the legal field, we can develop effective strategies to ensure transgender athletes are treated fairly. Our goal is for individuals to be judged on their skills and abilities on the playing field, not on irrelevant factors such as gender identity and sexual orientation.”

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