FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE | June 16, 2005
Award-winning Texas Lesbian Coach and NCLR Sports Project Coordinator to be Featured on ESPN Program, "Outside the Lines"
(San Francisco, CA, June 16, 2005) — When the National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR) and attorney Michael Shirk from the National Education Association/Texas State Teacher's Association negotiated a settlement agreement on behalf of Merry Stephens, an award-winning basketball coach at Bloomburg High School in Bloomburg, Texas, the case received national attention.
According to Shannon Price Minter, National Center for Lesbian Rights Legal Director, Merry Stephens, who alleged that the school was trying to fire her because of her sexual orientation, "is an extraordinary coach whose leadership skills were highly respected on the basketball court and in the classroom. The settlement agreement sent a powerful message that discrimination will not be tolerated and that the days when schools could discriminate with impunity against lesbian and gay teachers and coaches are past."
Stephens, will be featured on the ESPN television program "Outside the Lines," to be aired on Sunday morning, June 19, 2005 at 9:30 a.m. EST. NCLR Sports Project Coordinator, Helen Carroll, will also be a featured guest on the program.
"Outside the Lines" is ESPN's award winning, and critically acclaimed issues-oriented program that examines issues off the playing field in sports and affords subjects and guests the expanse of time needed to discuss topics grounded in sports with greater social impact.
The National Center for Lesbian Rights is a national legal organization committed to advancing the civil and human rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people and their families through litigation, public policy advocacy, and public education.