National Center for Lesbian Rights

Date

Year: 2014

Our Voices blog

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 LGBTQ 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 people like her. We first met Vicky in 2003 after she came to the U.S. seeking asylum from Mexico. She had lived through abuse and violence because of her gender identity and sexual...

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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 in prisons and jails across the country. There are thousands of transgender prisoners housed in correctional facilities who need basic medical care, protection from...

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Quality Legal Services for the Low-Income LGBTQ 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 LGBTQ work, that the client opened up and said he had quit because he was being harassed at work for being gay. Without this kind of information, they would have never had a case. This story reinforced what we, at the National Center for Lesbian Rights, had known—that even a...

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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 of the population whose sex at birth is different from who they know they are on the inside, and...

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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 issue an indictment of Wilson, but some small part of me remained hopeful. I was so wishing the script would be different this time around. But, no. Once again a black...

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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 jumped at the chance to return. While I’m no longer a part of any religious community, I see every day the difference that faith communities like COH make in the lives of people, including...

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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 particular—are assaulted and often murdered with impunity, simply because of who they are.  In most cases, these crimes are not...

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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 custody. That’s why the National Center for Lesbian Rights, along with several other national and local LGBTQ groups, worked...

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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 fought back tears as I described how a psychotherapist, at the request of my parents, tried to change my sexual orientation through conversion therapy when I was 10 years old. You can help NCLR’s...

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Our Goal—End Conversion Therapy in Five Years

No child should ever be hurt because of who they are. That’s why we started the #BornPerfect campaign to end conversion therapy across the country over the next five years. We need your financial support to make it happen. All attempts to change their sexual orientation or gender identity through conversion therapy damage LGBTQ youth, causing depression, substance abuse, and even suicide. Conversion therapy has been condemned by every major medical and mental health organization in the...

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Supreme Court Rules on Title VII! Give now & Celebrate!