JUNE 26: THE DAY LOVE WON: Yesterday, June 26, people across the United States commemorated the one-year anniversary of Obergefell v. Hodges, the historic Supreme Court case that made marriage equality the law of the land. Since the historic ruling, approximately 123,000 same-sex couples have married. No skies have fallen. But many tears of joy have been shed.
TRANS MILITARY BAN TO BE LIFTED JULY 1: On Friday, news outlets reported that Department of Defense (DoD) is poised to announce an end to the ban on transgender people serving openly in the military. HRC President Chad Griffin welcomed the news saying, “This historic announcement will not only extend long-overdue recognition to thousands of transgender service members, it will strengthen our military and our nation.” More from HRC and The New York Times.
POPE FRANCIS’ MESSAGE OF APOLOGY TO LGBTQ PEOPLE: Yesterday, during his trip to Armenia, Pope Francis said that the church should “apologize to the person who is gay and whom it has offended.” The comments came in response to a question regarding whether the Pope agreed with a top adviser who, following the Orlando massacre, said the church should apologize to LGBTQ people it has marginalized. HRC’s Mary Beth Maxwell welcomed the healing step: “Pope Francis’ message of inclusion and love for all people continues to bring Catholic leadership more in line with the large majority of American Catholics who believe in full equality.” More from HRC and The Associated Press.
A VICTORY FOR WOMEN’S HEALTH: In a landmark 5-3 decision this morning, the Supreme Court of the United States struck down part of Texas’ harsh anti-abortion law, which would have closed all but a handful of clinics throughout the state. This is a huge victory for women’s rights and ensures continued access to countless services crucial to the LGBTQ community, including family planning, HIV testing and hormone replacement therapy. Dozens of HRC staff were at the Supreme Court this morning awaiting the decision. More from NBC News.
TODAY, THE PARK AT STONEWALL BECOMES LATEST NATIONAL MONUMENT: At a dedication ceremony at noon today, Stonewall Inn will officially be recognized as the nation’s first-ever LGBTQ national monument. The monument will be anchored by Christopher Park which sits across from the historic inn, and also covers 7.7 acres of Greenwich Village. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell and Senior White House Adviser Valerie Jarrett will attend the celebration. More from The White House
A WIN FOR GRIMM: After a years-long legal battle, Virginia student Gavin Grimm, 16, can finally use the boys’ restroom. Last week, a federal court ordered the Gloucester County School Board to allow the transgender teen full access to the restroom that corresponds with his gender identity, consistent with a ruling from the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. “After nearly two years of humiliation and intense struggle, equality has finally prevailed,” Grimm said. More from ABC News.
CHARLOTTE, N.C., WELCOMES TRANS STUDENTS: Despite the state’s anti-LGBTQ HB2 law, Charlotte school officials adopted a policy that expands the district’s anti-bullying policy to require that transgender students’ names be respected and allows them to use restroom facilities consistent with their gender identity. Shocking no one, NC Governor Pat McCrory criticized the inclusive decision.
STAND WITH LGBTQ PEOPLE IN TURKEY: In the wake of recent police violence and a government ban on LGBTQ pride parades in Istanbul, 12 human and equal rights organizations, including HRC, are standing in solidarity with Turkey’s LGBTQ community. This weekend, Turkish police detained at least 19 activists marching in honor of Pride Month, and fired rubber bullets, utilized water cannons, and released tear gas to disperse marchers. Last weekend, officers also broke up gatherings for a trans pride parade in the central Istanbul neighborhood of Taksim. Read the groups’ full statement at HRC, and get the latest from The Associated Press.
BERMUDA REJECTS SAME-SEX MARRIAGES AND CIVIL UNIONS: In a non-binding referendum held last week, the British Overseas Territory of Bermuda voted to reject both same-sex civil unions and marriages. As turnout did not meet the 50 percent threshold, the results are considered to be invalid and the government will not be required to take action. Conservative anti-LGBTQ extremists from the United States, such as Brad Harrub, visited Bermuda in recent months attempting to foment anti-LGBTQ animus in advance of the referendum. Harrub speciously claimed that marriage equality could lead to the spread of paedophilia, bestiality and polygamy. He is part of a group of American extremists working tirelessly to undercut LGBTQ people around the world. More from HRC.
CityLab documents the rise of anti-LGBTQ legislation in the wake of nationwide marriage equality; Cleveland.com gives us the latest in the push for LGBTQ protections by Democratic lawmakers in Ohio; The Associated Press shares the story of Erin O’Flaherty, the first openly-gay Miss Missouri; TIME explores Seattle’s vibrant LGBTQ community; In the wake of Orlando, The Daily Beast takes a closer look at the lack of hate crimes laws protecing LGBTQ people, and U.S. News and World Report highlights the rampant discrimination still facing the community; Media Matters profiles the anti-LGBTQ players on Trump’s new evangelical advisory board; ABC News 7 introduces us to Ted Osius, the openly-gay U.S. Ambassador to Vietnam who’s advocating for LGBTQ rights abroad; WRAL reports on a horrific ruling out of Tennessee against a mother seeking custody of her child in a same-sex divorce case; BuzzFeed takes a look at whether Brexit will weaken the EU role in fighting for LGBTQ equality world wide; and CBC News explores the work ahead in a post-marriage equality world.
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