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TODAY: HRC HOLDS CEI LAUNCH EVENT IN MEXICO CITY: Today, HRC President Chad Griffin is joining leading U.S. companies with major employee bases in Mexico - including Dow, IBM and American Express - for an international event held in collaboration with the U.S. Embassy and Pride Connection, a consortium of Mexican LGBT workplace advocates. HRC has been working with these companies and other partners in Mexico City, including the American Chamber of Commerce, on how the U.S. business community can help drive positive progress toward LGBT equality in the workplace globally. The event is part of the launch of the 2016 Corporate Equality Index (CEI) which for the first time in its 14 year history, required that top-scoring companies have a global non-discrimination policy or code of conduct that specifically prohibits discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.  HRC raised the bar for a perfect score in the 2016 report to acknowledge the global scope of CEI-rated companies, and the imperative for fully-inclusive employee policies across operations worldwide. Read the full report here:

TWITTER TAKES A STAND AGAINST THE FDA’S DISCRIMINATORY POLICY: After a gay employee was turned away at a blood donation drive at Twitter’s headquarters, the company decided that it would no longer host drives until the Federal Drug Administration's (FDA) discriminatory policy was lifted. While the FDA released draft guidance earlier this year that will end the scientifically unwarranted lifetime ban on blood donations by men who have sex with men, the long-awaited change is still unacceptable, as it would require that they be abstinent for at least 12 months prior to giving blood. Twitter, which received a 100 on HRC Foundation’s 2016 Corporate Equality Index is currently speaking out and promoting a petition to end the ban. The American Red Cross, America's Blood Centers, and the American Association of Blood Banks have characterized the blood ban as medically and scientifically unwarranted as far back as 2006. HRC has been actively engaged for many years in working with the Administration, Congress, and other stakeholders to end the outdated policy. More here:

NYT EXAMINES THE MORMON CHURCH IN THE WAKE OF NEW POLICY: Today’s New York Times editorial focuses on the thousands of people who’ve left the Mormon Church in protest of a new policy that includes a ban on the baptism of children of same-sex couples, and characterizes the relationships of Mormons in same-sex relationships as “serious transgressions.” The board writes, “Religious organizations are entitled to set doctrine. Mormon leaders view heterosexual marriage as vital to eternal salvation. But those that continue to label sex between people of the same gender a sin, and perpetuate harmful stereotypes, should expect a reaction from their congregations.” Read the editorial here:

NEW SURVEY EXAMINES VIEWS ON FAMILY AND MARRIAGE: A new survey conducted by YouGov showcases the differing views on parenting and marriage in light of the Supreme Court’s decision affirming marriage equality. According to the Wall Street Journal, “One striking example can be seen in opinions on whether the Supreme Court ruling legalizing same-sex marriage will strengthen the institution….liberals say yes, while those on the conservative side strongly disagree.” It is worth reiterating that despite opinions to the contrary, the nation's leading child welfare, psychological and children's health organizations have issued policy or position statements declaring that a parent's sexual orientation is irrelevant to his or her ability to raise a child. More from WSJ and more on LGBT parenting here:


JACKSONVILLE HAS FIRST HEARING ON POSSIBLE LGBT-INCLUSIVE ORDINANCE: This week, Jacksonville held its first of 3 community meetings to address whether the city should extend local nondiscrimination protections to LGBT residents and visitors. Hundreds of supporters and opponents turned out to share stories at the meetings which was commissioned by recently-elected Republican Mayor Lenny Curry earlier this month. In the wake of nationwide marriage equality and increased LGBT visibility, more and more cities around the country are beginning to address the lack of protections for their LGBT communities. Jacksonville’s next 2 meetings will be on December 3rd and 15th. HRC is a proud member of Jacksonville Coalition for Equality (JCE) which has been working towards passing an inclusive ordinance since a prior effort failed in 2011. Earlier this year, HRC partnered with JCE and Equality Florida to successfully elect a pro-equality majority to the Jacksonville City Council. Without protections for LGBT people in housing, employment, and public accommodations, the city currently holds a 23 rating out of a possible 100 on HRC’s Municipal Equality Index. More here: and

TODAY: HEARING ON ANTI-TRANS BILL IN WISCONSIN:  Today, the Wisconsin Assembly Committee on Education will hear testimony on AB 469, a harmful bill that would prevent transgender students from using appropriate gender-segregated facilities in Wisconsin schools. This bill would not only conflict with federal protections for transgender and gender nonconforming students, but would also expose them to unacceptable risk of bullying, harassment and discrimination. HRC is encouraging Wisconsin residents to voice their opinions, and to call Members of the Assembly Committee on Education to urge them to oppose this harmful legislation. More here:

INDIANA REPUBLICANS PROPOSE DEEPLY FLAWED LGBT NONDISCRIMINATION ORDINANCE: This week, Indiana Republicans introduced an extremely flawed bill that leaders claim will expand the existing civil rights law to include protections for LGBT people. The measure however, has huge religious carve-outs that would allow certain business to refuse serving LGBT people for wedding ceremonies and give schools the freedom to make their own rules regarding transgender students, despite prevailing federal guidance on the matter. Transgender Hooisers would also be required to live as their preferred gender for a year before ever being able to file a complaint. The Indy Star breaks down the ordinance here:

GOV. PENCE SENT LETTER IN SUPPORT OF TDOR CHURCH EVENT: The Indy Star is reporting that Indiana Governor Mike Pence, sent a welcome letter to a local church that is preparing events for Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDOR). The Star writes, “In the letter to Christ Church Cathedral, the Republican governor wrote the “taking of any human life through violence or in the name of prejudice is a grievous tragedy.” Pence goes on to write, “As you gather at Christ Church Cathedral in prayer for the families and friends of those who were lost, let us always strive to live out Christ’s admonition to love others as we would want to be loved.”” This news comes the day after Indiana Republicans introduced flawed legislation that they say will grant protections for Hoosiers based on their sexual orientation and gender identity. Reports say that Gov. Pence has not yet reviewed the legislation. More here:

KENTUCKY BUSINESS LAUNCH COALITION OF LGBT PROTECTIONS: Over 160 leading Kentucky businesses have launched a new coalition working to pass nondiscrimination protections for LGBT Kentuckians in employment, housing and public accommodations. According to WAVE3, the Kentucky Competitive Workforce Coalition (KCWC) includes Almost Family, Inc.; Anheuser-Busch; Blue Equity, LLC; Brown-Forman Corporation, Chrysalis Ventures, Fifth Third Bank; Great Northern Building Products and more than 150 small, locally owned businesses throughout Kentucky. Kentucky is one of many states without explicit, fully inclusive non-discrimination laws protecting LGBT people. More here:

TUCSON NAMES OPENLY GAY POLICE CHIEF: This week, Tucson, Arizona, announced the naming of the city’s new police chief, Christopher Magnus, who is openly gay. According to SF Gate, Magnus, who recently married his partner, was the first openly gay police chief to marry. He previously served as the police chief in Richmond, California. Tucson received a 100 on HRC’s Municipal Equality Index (MEI), which examines municipalities’ laws, policies, and services and rates them on the basis of their inclusivity of LGBT people who live and work there. More here:


The Christian Science Monitor takes an in-depth look at the newly formed Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus… and Care2 shows the far-reaching impact of the Obergefell ruling.

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Filed under: A.M. Equality, Community

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