Achieving LGBT Equality Through Litigation, Legislation, Policy, and Public Education

Blog Archive

January 6, 2015 |

Leelah: “My death needs to mean something”

“We are who we are, and there’s very little we can do to change our core. If we’re asked to change, there will be a chasm so deep inside of us that it will threaten our very life.” –Jodie Patterson, mother of transgender child The suicide last week of 17-year-old transgender girl Leelah Alcorn was…

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December 30, 2014 |

Your Gift Today Will Be Doubled

I want to share with you Vicky’s journey with NCLR—a journey that spans 11 years. Vicky is only one of the hundreds of LGBT immigrants that turn to NCLR desperate for help each year. Your gift today doubled by the Justice and Equality Matching Gift Challenge — will help us continue our vital work for…

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December 18, 2014 | Issues: ,

New “Know Your Rights” Guide Provides Vital Information for Transgender Prisoners

I received a letter from a prisoner a few weeks ago that still haunts me. The prisoner, a transgender woman of color, tried to remove her own testicles after she was repeatedly denied medical care for her gender dysphoria. While this might seem extreme to people outside of prison, these incidents of “self-surgery” happen regularly…

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December 4, 2014 | Issues: , ,

Quality Legal Services for the Low-Income LGBT Community

Recently, a colleague at a legal aid organization told me about a client who came in for help because he had quit his job. It wasn’t until the attorney gave the client an overview of their legal programs, including their LGBT work, that the client opened up and said he had quit because he was…

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December 3, 2014 | Issues:

A Fair Opportunity for Transgender Student-Athletes in Minnesota

The advertisement from the Child Protection League Action that appeared in several newspapers across Minnesota last Sunday—attacking the Minnesota High School League’s proposed policy to address transgender student-athletes—was misleading and dangerous. The proposed policy has nothing to do with “male” students playing on girls’ teams. Rather, it has to do with transgender students—a tiny fraction…

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November 25, 2014 | Issues: ,

Will Ferguson Change Us?

The news that we’d been dreading for weeks finally came last night, and it was as devastating as I had expected. White Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson would not face criminal charges for his killing of unarmed black teenager Michael Brown. For days the rumors had been swirling that the Ferguson Grand Jury would not…

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November 24, 2014 | Issues:

A Sunday Well Spent

Earlier this month, I had the chance to take the pulpit at Cathedral of Hope, a Dallas institution. I had not visited the Cathedral in more than 10 years, but when I received an invitation from my long-time friend and community hero, Reverend Jim Mitulski, who has been serving as the interim Senior Pastor, I…

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November 19, 2014 | Issues: ,

Transgender Day of Remembrance

Today, International Transgender Day of Remembrance is being observed worldwide. It is day to honor the memory of transgender people we have lost to senseless acts of hatred and violence and to reflect on the transgender community’s incredible strength and resilience. Both globally and in the United States, transgender people—and transgender women of color in…

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November 18, 2014 | Issues: ,

Working to Ensure the Safety of Transgender Individuals

Interacting with law enforcement can be stressful for anyone. This is especially true of transgender individuals who all too often face discrimination, inappropriate comments, and hostility.  While most law enforcement personnel want to do what is right, we hear from many transgender people about the demeaning and degrading experiences they have had while under police…

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November 18, 2014 | Issues: , ,

Samuel Brinton: “A Therapist Told Me I Was Sick”

I never imagined I would be in Geneva, Switzerland, but last week there I was. I was no tourist, I was there to testify before a United Nations Committee. To say this was surreal would be a vast understatement. In the two minutes that I was given to address the U.N.’s Committee Against Torture, I…

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