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

Views & Analysis

May 11, 2014

Michael Sam Makes NFL History

Michael Sam made history today by becoming the first openly gay player to be drafted by an NFL team. Standing in front of ESPN news cameras, Sam, an All-American defensive lineman from the University of Missouri, broke down in tears, hugging and kissing his boyfriend after hearing from St. Louis Rams’ coach Jeff Fisher: “You…

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May 2, 2014

Title IX Protection of Transgender and Gender Nonconforming Students

On April 29, 2014, the United States Department of Education (DOE) released guidance that will have a significant impact on ongoing efforts to protect transgender and gender nonconforming students. The guidance, which focused on schools’ obligations to combat sexual assault on campus, explicitly recognized Title IX protects transgender students from discrimination. This is a great…

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May 2, 2014

STD Awareness for LGBTQ Youth

April is National STD Awareness Month! STD, short for “sexually transmitted disease,” actually refers to a whole spectrum of sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Unfortunately, there are quite a few myths about STDs, especially concerning how vulnerable the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (LGBTQ) community is to contracting them. Three of the most dangerous myths…

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April 30, 2014

Sexual Assault in the LGBT Community

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month. This month is a reminder that through a combination of stigma and myths, sexual assault in the LGBT community is often rendered invisible or dismissed outright, despite CDC statistics that show the sexual assault rate for LGBT individuals is comparable or higher than the sexual assault rate for heterosexual…

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April 8, 2014

A Mormon and a Lesbian Walk Into a Bar …

That could be the opening to a great joke, but the story here ends with something better than a punch line. My sister Sharon and I could not be more different. In high school, she was the super-popular and uber-cute homecoming queen, student officer, and North Ogden Miss Cherry Days. I was immersed in debate,…

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April 7, 2014

“Love is the Answer to All the Important Questions”

NCLR Executive Director Kate Kendell’s sister, Sharon, shared the below piece about her relationship with Kate at a big Mormon church gathering last month. Read Kate’s corresponding piece. By Sharon Ellsworth-Nielson Guest Columnist “Love is the answer to all the important questions.” When I heard this quote in 2010 by Richard Paul Evans at a…

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April 4, 2014

Support the HEAL Immigrant Women and Families Act!

Though the Affordable Care Act (ACA) will go a long way toward ensuring access to quality healthcare for most LGBT individuals, many LGBT immigrants are still prohibited from obtaining the affordable health care they need. Despite being authorized to live and work in the United States, many immigrants—including LGBT immigrants—are ineligible for affordable health coverage…

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March 25, 2014

What Hobby Lobby Can Mean for the LGBT Community

Today, March 25, 2014, the Supreme Court will hear argument in yet another case that could dramatically affect LGBT people, but this time it’s not about marriage equality. In Sebelius v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc., a for-profit business is challenging its obligation under the Affordable Care Act to provide employees with access to birth control….

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March 20, 2014

Help Close Discrimination Loopholes in California

It may seem like common sense that the California Supreme Court—our state’s foremost judicial body—would ban judges from belonging to groups that discriminate on the basis of race, gender, religion and sexual orientation. While this has in fact been the case since 1996, the state high court made an exception to this ban for nonprofit…

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February 22, 2014

Take a Stand Against Hate in Arizona

Even as we celebrate a new breakthrough every week, we must be vigilant for threats to our community. Case in point—Arizona. This week, the Arizona legislature passed a bill which would allow businesses to refuse service, based on their religious beliefs, to LGBT people or anyone else. The bill is patently unconstitutional, but we cannot…

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