National Center for Lesbian Rights

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Our Voices

NCLR’s Response to Justices Alito and Thomas

You have been by our side for a long time, through moments of thrilling victory and through many moments of peril and uncertainty as well.   We know you look to us to do our research, be one step ahead of our foes, and be ready to pivot and fight until we win the rights and achieve the lived equality we all deserve.  Rest assured, we are working harder than ever to respond to inequities and create a more just world. This past week, Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito, joined by...


Massachusetts Could Roll Back Trans Rights This Year — And We Need to Fight Back

* This piece originally appeared in them.us on September 10, 2018. A vote this November on trans rights in Massachusetts could have wide-ranging national consequences. by Shannon Minter & Jennifer Levi This November, Massachusetts voters will be the first anywhere to be asked whether they will retain a statewide law protecting transgender people’s equal access to public places. The law, Bill S.2047, was passed in 2016 with bipartisan support and signed by a Republican governor. For over...


Your Voice Matters: Write to Help Transgender Veterans

Providing healthcare to all of our nation’s veterans is the right thing to do.  Federal law requires the Veterans Administration (“VA”) to “furnish hospital care and medical services” to veterans. For most veterans, this means that after serving in the military they receive comprehensive medical care from the VA. Right now, transgender veterans’ healthcare coverage is at risk. On July 9, the Trump Administration announced it will be deciding whether to provide transgender veterans with...


LGBTQ people must oppose Trump SCOTUS nominee

* This piece originally appeared in the Los Angeles Blade and the Washington Blade on July 12, 2018. On July 9, President Trump nominated Judge Brett Kavanaugh to replace Justice Anthony Kennedy on the Supreme Court. Kennedy, who authored the Supreme Court’s marriage equality decision and a number of other landmark LGBTQ rights cases, was an occasional swing vote on the Supreme Court. Though he almost always sided with the conservative justices, sometimes he voted with liberal Justices...


A Note for Those in Our Community Planning to Enlist in the Military

On January 1, for the first time in history, transgender Americans will be able to openly enlist in our nation’s military. This is an incredible moment, and one we can all celebrate. We know that many transgender Americans have been planning and preparing for over a year for this day.  And many others will now begin considering this as a real option for the very first time. The military has put considerable time into preparing for this day, and has developed guidelines for those charged with...


Transgender Rights Under Trump—What Now?

In the wake of the elections, transgender people across the country are struggling to understand what the future may hold for our communities. In the past two decades—and especially in the past eight years under President Obama—we have made so many gains in employment protections, health care, student rights, family law, asylum, federally funded housing programs and homeless shelters, and other areas. In addition, President Obama has protected federal benefits programs and made health care...


Now that Trump Has Been Elected, Can Our Marriage Be Undone?

Now that Trump has won the presidential election, we are hearing concerns and fears from many same-sex couples who are concerned that their marriages may be challenged or invalidated.  We are also hearing from couples who are not yet married, but worried that they may lose the right to marry under a Trump administration. While there are many reasons for concern about the new administration, the freedom to marry—and the security of our existing marriages—are not in serious jeopardy. There is no...


North Carolina’s War Against Gender-Nonconforming People

Last month, North Carolina enacted HB2, one of the most viciously anti-civil rights laws in the country. In addition to repealing local minimum wage laws and local protections for LGBTQ people, HB2 stripped women, people of color, and other protected groups of the ability to bring discrimination cases in state courts. HB2 also openly attacked transgender people. HB2’s supporters demonized transgender people as deviants who must be excluded from shared bathrooms and locker rooms to “protect”...


Wedlocked No More! Maryland Victory Sheds Light On An Emerging Issue for Married Same-Sex Couples Across the Country

Every year, more states and countries allow same-sex couples to marry. But in the states that continue to bar same-sex couples from marriage, a new legal question is emerging: will the state permit married same-sex couples to divorce, even though it will not allow them to marry? If not, these couples are stuck in a terrible legal limbo. They are legally married, and their mar- riages are recognized in many places. But they cannot get a divorce where they live, and they cannot file for divorce...


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