#AM_Equality Tipsheet: February 10, 2017

by Allison Turner

9th Circuit maintains freeze on refugee ban; Tom Price confirmed as HHS Secretary; NC legislators introduce comprehensive HB2 repeal

9TH CIRCUIT MAINTAINS FREEZE ON REFUGEE BAN: Yesterday the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals continued the suspension of Donald Trump’s executive order regarding immigration. The unconscionable order would have, among other things, prevented entry into the United States by LGBTQ refugees fleeing violence in countries where simply being LGBTQ  is a crime, like in Syria and Iraq. HRC’s report, “Helping LGBTQ Refugees and Asylum Seekers in the Age of ISIL,” highlighted how men alleged to have sex with men are hunted down by ISIL, targeted on social media and subjected to extreme violence. Among the vicious attacks: ISIL has tied nooses around these men’s necks and dragged them behind trucks, burned them alive, thrown them off buildings and stoned them to death. More from BuzzFeed.

TOM PRICE JEOPARDIZES HEALTH AND WELL-BEING OF LGBTQ PEOPLE: Early this morning, Tom Price was confirmed as Secretary of Health and Human Services -- putting the health and well-being of LGBTQ people in jeopardy. Price has a long, disturbing record of opposing basic civil rights for LGBTQ people and will be serving in a position of unique importance to the LGBTQ community. “Tom Price has shown alarming disregard for LGBTQ people, and for the health challenges we face,” said Chad Griffin, President of the Human Rights Campaign (@ChadHGriffin). “The fact of the matter is that too many LGBTQ people are still denied care, denied visitation rights, and are treated unfairly by their providers. The Trump Administration has floated executive order language that would allow the government to bankroll discrimination in all of those areas -- and Tom Price’s alarming record shows that he's the perfect rubber stamp for the president's shameful proposals. When it comes to the health of our community, we’re not going back. We will not give one inch on the progress we've made in the last 8 years. The Trump administration should know that we’re watching and will hold each and every appointee accountable.” For more, check out HRC’s report: Tom Price: A History of Anti-LGBTQ Actions, which includes details about Price’s extensive history of anti-LGBTQ lawmaking More from HRC.

NC LEGISLATORS INTRO BILL TO REPEAL & REPLACE HB2: Yesterday, companion bills were introduced in the North Carolina House and Senate to repeal HB2 and replace it with statewide, LGBTQ-inclusive, non-discrimination protections -- the same commonsense protections that exist in 19 states and more than 100 cities across the country. “The economic fallout over HB2 continues to mount, and it’s far past time for lawmakers to take action by repealing and replacing this vile, reckless law,” said HRC Field Director Marty Rouse. “The only law in the nation that mandates discrimination against transgender people, HB2 is an unprecedented attack on LGBTQ North Carolinians and visitors to the state.” The legislation comes after the North Carolina Sports Association warned lawmakers that the state risks losing NCAA championship games -- and a quarter billion dollars in potential related revenue -- through 2022 if HB2 is not immediately repealed. More from HRC.

  • “I’ll take ‘States that need to repeal their anti-transgender laws’ for 200!”: On last night’s episode of Jeopardy, viewers got a reminder that North Carolina has still not repealed the infamous, anti-transgender HB2. What is… taking so long?

FEEL GOOD FRIDAY -- TRANSGENDER BOY MAKES HISTORY, ATTENDS FIRST CUB SCOUT MEETING: On Tuesday night, nine-year-old Joe Maldonado attended his first Cub Scout meeting after the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) changed its policies to allow transgender boys, like him, to join. Previous BSA policies restricted membership to boys who were listed as male on their birth certificate; the Boy Scouts will now admit any boy whose gender is listed as male on the application parents are asked to fill out. This significant policy shift allows transgender boys whose parents cannot or have not changed their son’s gender on their birth certificate to join the Boy Scouts. Read more about his incredible story from NorthJersey.com.

VIRGINIA SENATE PASSES DISCRIMINATORY ANTI-LGBTQ SB 1324: On Tuesday, the Virginia Senate passed discriminatory legislation that seeks to give taxpayer-funded agencies and service providers a license to discriminate against LGBTQ people under the guise of religion. The bill, SB 1323, now heads to the House. It mirrors HB 2025, passed last week by the Virginia House of Delegates. HB 2025 could allow taxpayer-funded organizations like homeless shelters and adoption agencies to refuse service to same-sex couples, transgender people, and anyone suspected of having intimate relationships outside of a heterosexual marriage (such as single mothers or a cohabiting straight couple) without losing taxpayer funding, contracts, licensing, or other forms of state recognition. Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe vetoed a similar discriminatory proposal in 2016, and has vowed to do the same if these bills make it to his desk this year. More from HRC.

TOLEDO CITY COUNCIL BANS SO-CALLED “CONVERSION THERAPY”: On Tuesday, the Toledo City Council voted unanimously to prohibit the dangerous ​and discredited ​practice of so-called “conversion therapy” within the city. ​The ordinance also clarified the city's existing gender identity ​nondiscrimination protections. More from Cleveland.com.

SUNDAY -- GRAMMY AWARD NOMINEES FEATURE LGBTQ AND ALLIED PERFORMERS: LGBTQ and allied performers -- including Lady Gaga, Beyoncé and Demi Lovato -- are poised to dominate the Grammys, airing live on Sunday. Sia, the late David Bowie, Panic! At the Disco, Iggy Pop, Pentatonix & Dolly Parton, Margaret Cho, Tig Notaro, and the cast of Kinky Boots are all nominated for awards.

  • Also on Sunday: The annual BAFTA awards will announce its winners. LGBTQ ally Meryl Streep is nominated for Best Leading Actress in Florence Foster Jenkins, and Moonlight, a film about a gay, Black man, is nominated for Best Film and Best Original Screenplay.

IN TRUMP’S AMERICA, ANTI-LGBTQ EXTREMISTS MORE EMBOLDENED TO EXPORT HATE: Infamous exporter of hate and vocal Putin supporter Brian Brown announced this week that he is renewing his crusade against the Russian LGBTQ community. In an email sent to donors, Brown, leader of the notorious anti-equality organizations World Congress of Families (WCF) and National Organization for Marriage (NOM), claims that he is in Moscow promoting the manifesto of his newest anti-LGBTQ hate group, the International Organization for the Family (IOF). More from BuzzFeed.


The New York Times looks at the storied newspaper’s history of accepting same-sex commitment ceremonies and civil unions in their “Weddings” section… The Ringer reflects on the way The Simpsons combatted homophobia in the 1990s… Mashable shares a powerful Australian advertisement in support of marriage equality… Broadway World highlights the lineup for the 2017 Outfest Fusion LGBT People of Color Film Festival…

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A.M. Equality