4/9/09

Texas Christian Universities New "DiversCity Q" to offer inclusiveity for GLBT Community!



BREAKING NEWS: TCU delays housing program for LGBT students
Source 'Instant' by Dallas Voice News Editor John Wright;

"Officials at Texas Christian University have postponed plans for a living-learning community geared toward LGBT students and their supporters."

"The two TCU students who proposed DiversityCity Q — Shelly Newkirk and Su Harz — said Monday they were disappointed with the decision. Harz said she thinks the administration caved to outside pressure, and she noted that DiversityCity Q was the only living-learning community that had generated any media attention."

"Newkirk said a demonstration is planned Friday at TCU to push for an LGBT resource center on campus. But she said the demonstration was planned prior to Monday’s decision, and she doesn’t want it to turn into a protest. The demonstration will be from 11:45 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., beginning at the Bass Building and ending at the Sadler Lawn."

Full story at Dallas Voice Blog INSTANT TEA

Texas Christian University (TCU) is moving forward with plan's to provide a safe learning environment to Gay, Lesbian, Transgender and Questioning students fall of 2009.

Source Dallas Morning News;

"TCU is apparently the first campus in the state to reserve housing for gay students and straight students who support them. And that's earning kudos from advocates for gay students."

"It just basically says that TCU wants their campus to be safe for all students and wants everyone to feel welcomed," said Shane Windmeyer, executive director and founder of Campus Pride. The nonprofit group supports gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender college students."

Full Original story at the Dallas Morning News TCU to provide special housing for gay, lesbian students


EQUALITY MARYLAND CALLS FOR A VOTE ON ANTI-DISCRIMINATION LEGISLATION

Contact Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee Chairman Brian Frosh and Vice Chairwoman Lisa Gladden and urge them to vote, once and for all, on SB 566, gender identity anti-discrimination legislation. Call today.
Sen. Frosh: 1-800-492-7122, ext. 3124 (toll free)
Sen. Gladden: 1-800-492-7122, ext. 3697 (toll free)
With four days remaining until the end of the 2009 legislative session, the prospects of passing gender identity discrimination legislation are fading. During hearings in February and March, House and Senate committees were urged by transgender Marylanders who have been fired from their jobs or harassed by employers, discriminated against in rental housing, and denied access to safe social services for the homeless to clarify in law that such discrimination is illegal.
The Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee, in response to urges for movement on the legislation, has placed the bill on its voting agenda four times. Each time, the Committee has chosen a path of inaction, opting to hold off on a vote. In the latest move, the committee on Wednesday, April 8 again voted to hold off on considering a vote on the bill until Friday, April 10. Committee Chairman Brian Frosh (D-16) holds the power to bring the measure for a vote.
Despite good faith efforts led by the bill sponsors, Delegate Joseline Peña-Melnyk (D-21), Senator Rich Madaleno (D-18), and equality Maryland to address lawmakers’ concerns about public facilities and to appease religious organizations by exempting them from the hiring protections in the bill, the Judicial Proceedings Committee continues to stall a vote on this important bill.
“To date, no issue or concern with the legislation has been identified to which we have not responded with a reasonable solution,” said Delegate Peña-Melnyk. “At this late date, the strategy of Senate leaders is clear: hold the legislation and run out the clock on the 2009 session, which ends Monday, April 13, at midnight.”
Equality Maryland’s response is simple: No matter the outcome, Senator Frosh, take this vote. Outlawing blatant discrimination, rather than condoning it through inaction, is a moral imperative for our state. Responding to discrimination is not an issue that is too hot to handle, especially when those affected may be incapable of putting supper on the table, a roof over their head or supporting their children – especially in these difficult economic times.
It is worth noting that members of the Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee have been actively communicated with by broad constituencies, including advocates for the homeless, civil rights groups, the state’s human relations commission, religious organizations, and unions. Together, these groups have spoken with one voice, imploring legislators to address a documented public policy issue: transgender persons are statistically at much greater risk for underemployment and unemployment, poverty, homelessness, and resultant health disparities because of housing and employment discrimination.
We know and recognize that many people are deeply uncomfortable with how a transgender person may identify or appear, but that discomfort cannot be used as an excuse to deny an already vulnerable group of their ability to find employment or a place to live. The anti-discrimination legislation before the Maryland General Assembly does not address social mores, or force religious organizations to hire transgender people, or create hardships for businesses. It simply states that transgender people should be able to earn a living being judged on their qualifications and abilities alone, and able to access housing and needed services without prejudice barring the way.
Discrimination is a sad reality that deserves to be addressed by legislators.
Contact Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee Chairman Brian Frosh and Vice Chairwoman Lisa Gladden and urge them to vote, once and for all, on SB 566, gender identity anti-discrimination legislation. Call today.
Sen. Frosh: 1-800-492-7122, ext. 3124 (toll free)
Sen. Gladden: 1-800-492-7122, ext. 3697 (toll free)

sign up for EQMD Action Center.

IOWA It's NOT over! Please Call Legislators NOW!


URGENT!!! It's NOT OVER, call your Legislators NOW!!!
Right-wing extremists are resorting to underhanded tactics in an attempt to undermine legislative leadership and take away the freedom to marry! While legislative leadership stood firm this morning, extremists are attempting to overthrow the House chair and push an anti-marriage amendment to the floor!
We NEED you to call your Representative in the next hour to firm up our support! Find your Representative here, then place a call immediately.
House Switchboard: 515-281-3221
Tell them to stand firm with legislative leadership and oppose this distracting and divisive move. With all the challenges Iowa is facing, it's time for our elected officials to get back to work for Iowa families!
PS - If you don't have time to call, please email your legislator now!

GLSEN at SMU :DFW Breaking The Silence Rally

2nd Annual DFW Breaking the Silence Rally. 2nd Annual DFW Breaking the Silence Rally


GLSEN National Day of SilenceThe National Day of Silence brings attention to anti-LGBT name-calling, bullying and harassment in schools. Each year the event has grown, now with hundreds of thousands of students coming together to encourage schools and classmates to address the problem of anti-LGBT behavior.Why do we need a Day of Silence?GLSEN's 2007 National School Climate Survey found that 9 out of 10 LGBT students report verbal, sexual or physical harassment at school and more than 30% report missing at least a day of school in the past month out of fear for their personal safety. The Day of Silence helps bring us closer to making anti-LGBT bullying, harassment and name-calling unacceptable in America's schools.Founded in 1996, the Day of Silence has become the largest single student-led action towards creating safer schools for all, regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression. From the first-ever Day of Silence at the University of Virginia in 1996, to the organizing efforts in over 8,000 middle schools, high schools, colleges and universities across the country in 2008, its textured history reflects its diversity in both numbers and reach.
FOR PLANNING RESOURCES AND MATERIALS, PLEASE VISIT THE DAY OF SILENCE RESOURCE PAGE
Breaking the SilenceRally and ConcertIn an effort to educate the community about school violence and the need for safe school policies that protect all youth, the Dallas chapter of GLSEN, in partnership with Southern Methodist University's SPECTRUM, will be calling for community organizations to join with the Day of Silence student participants for the 2nd Annual DFW Breaking the Silence Rally.The event, designed to show support for schools that are free from violence and harassment, will be held at 7:00 p.m. on April 17 at the Doak Walker Plaza at Southern Methodist University . During the rally, Day of Silence participants from throughout the DFW Metroplex will have an opportunity to share their experience, strength and hope with the larger community. This year's event will also feature the music of Eric Himan, as seen and heard on MTV's LOGO and Sirus Radio's OUTQ Channel. Eric's music draws comparisons to male artists such as Maroon 5 and John Mayer but also female singer-songwriters, Ani DiFranco and Tracy Chapman.Hundreds of thousands of students from over 5,000 middle schools, high schools and colleges will ban together in silence on April 17 in the largest student-led action in the country calling for an end to the bullying, harassment and name-calling endured by lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) students.

Partner Organizations for BREAKING THE SILENCE:SMU's SPECTRUMCathedral of Hope UCCDFW Bi NetGender Education, Advocacy & Resources (GEAR)League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) 4871 - The Dallas Rainbow CouncilOut Takes DallasP-FLAG Dallas Chapter Promise House QueerliberactionResource Center of Dallas SMU's Women's Center for Gender and Pride Initiatives The Women's Chorus of Dallas