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  WINDY CITY TIMES

NATIONAL Housing lawsuit, AIDS event, trans ICE case, gay men egged
Special to the online edition of Windy City Times
by Andrew Davis, Windy City Times
2018-07-31

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A group of advocates at last week's International AIDS Conference ( AIDS 2018 ) in Amsterdam is calling for the next conference—scheduled for July 2020 in San Francisco and Oakland, California—to be moved out of the U.S. entirely, TheBody.com noted. The activists cite current U.S. policies that prohibit the entry of sex workers, drug users and citizens of several majority Muslim countries. Trump administration policies and pronouncements have also contributed to a hostile climate for LGBTQ people, immigrants and people of color, advocates argue.

The National Center for Lesbian Rights ( NCLR ), Relman, Dane & Colfax PLLC, and co-counsel filed a lawsuit on behalf of married lesbian couple Mary Walsh, age 72, and Bev Nance, age 68, against St. Louis senior housing community Friendship Village Sunset Hills, an NCLR press release stated. The complaint alleges that Friendship Village violated the federal Fair Housing Act and Missouri Human Rights Act by discriminating against Walsh and Nance on the basis of sex, denying them a unit because they are a same-sex married couple. In addition to NCLR and Relman, Dane & Colfax PLLC, plaintiffs' representatives include the ACLU of Missouri and Arlene Zarembka.

The Human Rights Campaign ( HRC ) sent Freedom of Information Act ( FOIA ) requests to the U.S. Immigration Customs and Enforcement ( ICE ) and U.S. Customs and Border Patrol ( CBP ) for the release of all records related to the detention and death of Roxsana Hernandez, a transgender woman who died while in custody of ICE after crossing the United States-Mexico border, a press release noted. Hernandez reached the border May 9, seeking asylum after fleeing Honduras due to the violence and discrimination she experienced based on her gender identity; she was subsequently held in two ICE facilities before being transferred to a hospital May 17 and dying May 25.

Three gay men were egged outside of a gay bar in the LGBT-friendly town of Wilton Manors, Florida, The Los Angeles Blade noted. Brian Carter and his two friends were standing outside of Gym Bar when a driver in a black BMW M3 drove by saying, "Do you want to be gay?" "I mostly just heard the yelling and was pelted right away," Carter told Local 10. "It was a pretty heavy hit right here, but it splattered so much and it hit a couple other people." Gym Bar owner Rick Schmultzer described the person responsible as "cowardly."

Lambda Legal and the Black AIDS Institute ( BAI ) launched "CUT THE STIGMA"—a joint public-education campaign focused on Black communities developed to dispel misconceptions surrounding the transmission of HIV and reduce HIV stigma and its resulting discrimination, a Lambda Legal press release noted. The campaign was developed in conjunction with a complaint filed in United States District Court by Lambda Legal on behalf of Nikko Briteramos against the owner of a Los Angeles barbershop who refused to cut Briteramos's hair because he is living with HIV. To learn more about the Cut the Stigma campaign, visit https://blackaids.org/CutTheStigma/.

An Indiana man who told police he was headed to a California gay-pride event when he was found with a loaded rifle and explosives in his car has been sentenced to more than seven years in prison, a Tampa Bay Times item noted. James Wesley Howell pled no contest to weapons and explosives charges. He told police he was headed to a gay pride event in West Hollywood, hours after 49 people were killed at the Pulse nightclub in Florida.

A federal court ruled in a Lambda Legal lawsuit that St. Johns County School Board in St. Augustine, Florida, discriminated against Drew Adams, a 17-year-old boy, by denying him access to the boys' restroom because he is transgender, a press release noted. Lambda Legal argued that the school district's policy to exclude transgender students from the restrooms that match their gender is unconstitutional because it discriminates based on sex in violation of the Equal Protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, and Title IX of the 1972 Education Amendments Act. The Court ruled for Adams on both counts, holding that the School Board's policy violated the Fourteenth Amendment and Title IX. The decision is at https://www.lambdalegal.org/in-court/legal-docs/adams_fl_20180726_decision.

LGBTQ Victory Fund—the only national organization dedicated to electing LGBTQ leaders to public office—endorsed 16 more candidates for elected positions across the nation, a press release noted. Two of the 16 candidates received Game Changer endorsements: U.S. Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney in his run for New York attorney general, and Minnesota state Rep. Erin Maye Quade in her run for lieutenant governor of Minnesota. Game Changer status is awarded to statewide or federal candidates who are poised to make an outsized impact on equality. All currently running openly LGBTQ endorsed candidates can be seen at VictoryFund.org/ourcandidates.

Equality Florida is demanding a response from Republican Florida Gov. Rick Scott after the killings of four transgender women of color in the state, with the most recent being in Orange County, The Orlando Sentinel noted. Equality Florida's call comes days after Sasha Garden, 27, was found dead at the Reserve at Lake Buchanan Apartments. According to Equality Florida, Garden's killing was the fourth of a transgender woman of color in the state this year. The other three happened in Jacksonville: Celine Walker, 36, shot in a motel Feb. 5; Antash'a English, 38, shot between two abandoned homes June 1; and Cathalina Christina James, 24, killed in a hotel June 24.

Also, the Human Rights Campaign ( HRC ) issued a statement mourning the loss of Diamond Stephens, a 39-year-old Black transgender woman who was shot to death June 18 in Meridian, Mississippi. HRC said that Stephens was ( and still is ) misgendered, which delayed the organization's awareness of this deadly incident.

Delaware Gov. John Carney ( D ) signed legislation licensed mental health professionals from practicing gay conversion therapy on minors, The Huffington Post noted. The bill, SB 65, defines conversion therapy or "reparative therapy" as "any practice or treatment that seeks to change an individual's sexual orientation or gender identity ... including any effort to change behaviors or gender expressions or to eliminate or reduce sexual or romantic attractions or feelings toward individuals of the same gender."

A man in his early 20s was arrested after he allegedly stabbed his two same-sex adoptive fathers at their home in Sherman Oaks, California, leaving both of the victims in critical condition, ABC7.com reported. According to LAPD investigators, the incident apparently stemmed from an argument involving the suspect, who was home from college for the summer, and his parents. People identified the suspect as 21-year-old Matthew Boulet; authorities said he admitted to the stabbings and is facing attempted murder charges.

CNN's Don Lemon knocked the White House for barring Kaitlan Collins from covering a Trump event, Mediaite.com noted. Collins' supposed sin here was shouting out questions to President Trump about Vladimir Putin and attorney Michael Cohen. Lemon said, "I'm going to state the obvious here. Kaitlan Collins is doing her job. ... There's nothing unusual about Kaitlan Collins doing her job. It is unusual for the white House to ban her for doing her job."

The slow trend of Virginia gradually becoming a more LGBT-friendly state continues as gay residents are in the midst of starting two new organizations dedicated to increasing protections and providing resources for queer people, The Washington Blade reported. Said organizations are Virginia Beach for Fairness and the Shenandoah LGBTQ Center. Current Virginia law has some protections for LGBT individuals, but no legal protections are currently outlined for housing and private-sector employment, according to WTKR.com .

A gay teenager is challenging one of Ohio's most anti-gay Republicans this fall, LGBTQ Nation noted. Nino Vitale represents Ohio's deep-red 85th state House district; he's on the far-right, and he got national attention last month for his "Pastor Protection Act," which prevents people from suing pastors and "religious societies" for refusing to perform or participate in a marriage if their beliefs conflict with the ceremony. Now, teen Garrett Baldwin —a gay 18-year-old who's a high-school cheerleader and member of the Ohio National Guard )—is challenging Vitale; a conservative Democrat, Baldwin favors restrictions on women's reproductive freedom and opposes banning assault weapons.

The Human Rights Campaign ( HRC ) Foundation has released the resource "Coming Out: Living Authentically as LGBTQ Asian and Pacific Islander Americans," a press release noted. The release coincides with NQAPIA's LGBTQ API National Conference in San Francisco. HRC partnered with the National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance ( NQAPIA ) to develop and shape this resource. The item is at http://www.hrc.org/resources/coming-out-living-authentically-as-lgbtq-asian-and-pacific-islander-america.

Land O'Lakes named Beth Ford as the company's first female CEO this week, making her the first openly gay woman CEO at a Fortune 500 company, according to The Hill, citing CNN. The network noted that the number of number of women leading Fortune 500 companies varies: Marissa Mayer's departure from Yahoo and Irene Rosenfeld's exit at Mondelez helped drive a 25 percent drop in the number of female CEOs at Fortune 500 companies between 2017 and 2018.

Pro-LGBT Catholic organization DignityUSA issued a press release joining many in the church and justice communities in mourning the death of retired Seattle Archbishop Raymond "Dutch" Hunthausen. The srchbishop's allowing DignityUSA to hold a liturgy for 1,200 gay and lesbian Catholics and supporters in St. James Cathedral in 1983, and his video message of welcome and affirmation sparked a Vatican investigation that led to his eventual ouster from church leadership.

Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, the former archbishop of Washington and longtime globe-trotting diplomat of the Catholic Church, resigned his position as a cardinal, The Washington Post reported. McCarrick, 88, was found by the church in June to be credibly accused of sexually abusing a teenager nearly 50 years ago. Since then, additional reports of sexual abuse and harassment by the cardinal, over decades, have been reported. McCarrick is the highest ranked U.S. Catholic clergy member to ever be removed from ministry due to sexual=abuse allegations, and the first cardinal to fully resign his position since 1927.

A Democratic campaign staffer tore a page from history and wore a "Homo, Not Cuomo" T-shirt to a Cynthia Nixon event—and the gubernatorial challenger even posed for pictures with him afterward, The New York Post noted. The T-shirt is a take on the "Vote for Cuomo, not the Homo" political attack leveled against former Mayor Ed Koch in 1977 by allies of Mario Cuomo. Cuomo's son and current New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo ran his father's mayoral campaign and was fingered by Koch operatives as the man responsible—charges Andrew has long denied.

In Florida, a developer is proposing affordable rental apartments for the aging gay community in Wilton Manors, arguing they often face housing discrimination, the SunSentinel noted. Carrfour Supportive Housing is proposing a housing development on the site of The Pride Center at Equality Park, 2040 N. Dixie Hwy. The project is expected to go before the Wilton Manors Planning & Zoning Board on Aug. 20. Carrfour wants to build 48 apartments in a four-story building on the northwestern part of the property for residents age 55 and older.

New Orleans police have made an arrest in the fatal shooting of a Black Lives Matter activist known for his leap through police tape to try to seize a Confederate battle flag during a demonstration last year in South Carolina, CBS News reported. Roosevelt Iglus, 26, has been charged as a suspect in the death of 32-year-old Muhiyidin Elamin Moye, better known as Muhiyidin d'Baha. Moye was shot in the thigh early Feb. 6.

A Florida man has been arrested after allegedly luring men to his home with the promise of anonymous sex and then filming them without their knowledge or consent, according to a NewNowNext.com that cites The Miami Herald. Federal agents arrested Bryan Deneumostier, 33, on charges related to his operation of StraightBoyz—a pay-porn website featuring videos of straight men getting duped into receiving oral sex while blindfolded or wearing black goggles. Deneumostier was also arrested in July, and was charged with unlawful sex with a minor after police found him in a hotel with an underage boy who been reported missing.


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