124 posts categorized "GLAA"

April 06, 2014

April 30 - GLAA's 43rd anniversary awards reception

Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance
Fighting for equal rights since 1971
P.O. Box 75265, Washington, DC 20013
(202) 667-5139 - equal@glaa.org


April 3, 2014


Dear Friend of GLAA:

We like to celebrate our anniversary by honoring others. Thus at our annual reception on April 30 we’ll present Distinguished Service Awards to three stalwart activists: Jerry Clark, Earl Fowlkes, and Alison Gill. And we’ll clink glasses with many other friends, in and out of public office, who have helped keep D.C. at the forefront of LGBT progress.

We’re sprucing it up this year, moving to Policy Restaurant and Lounge at 14th and T NW on the hottest new “restaurant row” in town. (After all, at GLAA we’re all about policy!) We’ll have a tasty selection of passed hors d’oeuvres, some happy hour bar specials, and a complimentary champagne toast.

This week’s primary election showed how the political landscape and players change. There is still a need for experienced, independent voices, year-in and year-out, to defend our community’s interests in the face of new challenges.

So what still needs doing? We lay it out in our policy brief, Building on Victory, the fruit of consultation with activists from across our community. Building coalitions, developing expertise, and engaging those who make and execute public policy are still the way to wield influence—and to ward off interference by Congress, which often treats the District like a plaything.

GLAA’s voice continues to be heard through the political tumult. With our 2014 Election Project we have obtained answers from D.C. candidates on a range of LGBT issues. With our allies we won transgender healthcare coverage and worked to improve relations with police. We even shared lessons from our marriage equality victory with local students (for example, my oral history taped by students at Cesar Chavez Public Charter High School). Just today, we and other groups including DC Trans Coalition and GLOV raised our voices for repeal of the District’s unconstitutional so-called Prostitution Free Zones.

Our collective “seat at the table” is about much more than having an LGBT person in an elected post; our community won its respected place over many decades of advocacy and civic involvement.

GLAA’s volunteer, collaborative approach has a solid track record of winning results. But maintaining the policy chops and political savvy to get policies enacted and implemented requires sustained commitment. Your support is a smart investment in forward-looking activism.

On April 30 at Policy (1904 14th Street NW), please join our reception as we renew our commitment to keeping the flame of LGBT equality and justice alive. You can RSVP using our anniversary flyer or make your ticket donation via PayPal at http://glaa.org/anniversary/.


Hope to see you there!

Rick Rosendall
President

April 03, 2014

GLAA renews call to repeal 'Prostitution Free Zones'

Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance
Fighting for equal rights since 1971
P.O. Box 75265, Washington, DC 20013
(202) 667-5139 • equal@glaa.org

April 3, 2014

To:Councilmembers Tommy Wells, Mary Cheh, Jack Evans, Anita Bonds, Muriel Bowser
Cc:Councilmember David Grosso, Council Chair Phil Mendelson
Subject:Please repeal Prostitution Free Zones

Dear Members of the Committee on the Judiciary and Public Safety:

It has come to our attention that Councilmember David Grosso is preparing to introduce a bill to repeal so-called Prostitution Free Zones. It will likely be referred to your committee.

We strongly support repeal of PFZs, as we have previously testified.

The use of Prostitution Free Zones (or PFZs) facilitates discriminatory police profiling of transgender people.[1] It is also a constitutionally questionable practice. As our colleagues from the DC Trans Coalition note:

  1. The Attorney General has determined that PFZs can't be defended in court and are likely unconstitutional.
  2. MPD has suspended PFZ implementation and is working to rescind its PFZ general order.
  3. Eliminating PFZs is a step toward reducing violence against sex workers.
  4. PFZ repeal makes sense from a public health perspective.

We agree with the 2005 testimony of Stephen M. Block, then legislative counsel for ACLU of the Nation's Capital, concerning the bill authorizing temporary PFZs that was then under consideration. I will summarize some of his citations.

Continue reading "GLAA renews call to repeal 'Prostitution Free Zones'" »

March 20, 2014

GLAA primary ratings ad

Primaryratingsadmw

Here's GLAA's ratings ad for the April 1 D.C. primary election. It appears in today's issue of Metro Weekly. (Note: if we could afford it, we'd run it in the Blade also. Advertising is relatively expensive.)

Visit our main website to see the full news release on our candidate ratings.

April 30 - Join us for GLAA's 43rd anniversary awards reception

Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance
Fighting for equal rights since 1971
P.O. Box 75265, Washington, DC 20013
(202) 667-5139 - equal@glaa.org


March 20, 2014


"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change
the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has." – Margaret Mead

Dear Friend of GLAA:

A bird just landed on my windowsill and sang a spring greeting. Next month, GLAA will turn 43 years old. No LGBT rights group in America has been active longer. Yet one of our founders, Paul Kuntzler, will be at our awards reception on April 30 at Policy Restaurant and Lounge to give the champagne toast.

Some people ask what there is left to do. The answers are in our policy brief, Building on Victory, the fruit of extensive consultation with activists from across the local community. Building coalitions, developing expertise, and engaging those who make and execute public policy are the best ways to defend LGBT interests—and to ward off interference by Congress, which often treats the District like a plaything.

GLAA’s independent voice continues to be heard through the political tumult. With our 2014 Election Project we have obtained answers from D.C. candidates on a range of LGBT issues. With our allies we won transgender healthcare coverage and worked to improve relations with police. We even shared lessons from our marriage equality victory with local students (for example, my oral history for students at Cesar Chavez Public Charter High School).

In truth, our “seat at the table” is about much more than having an LGBT person in an elected post; our community won and secured that seat in a figurative sense over many decades—not just with advocacy by GLAA and our allies but civic involvement by people like you in neighborhoods all over town.

GLAA’s volunteer approach gives a great return on your activist dollars. Maintaining the policy chops and political savvy to get policies enacted and implemented requires sustained commitment more than money—though we do need support for our expenses. The human element is key; we are eager to reinvigorate it to meet new challenges.

On April 30 at Policy (1904 14th Street NW), please join us for drinks and hors d’oeuvres as we renew our commitment to keeping the flame of LGBT equality and justice alive. We will present Distinguished Service Awards to Jerry Clark, Earl D. Fowlkes, Jr., and Alison Gill. Please RSVP using our anniversary flyer or make your ticket donation via PayPal at http://glaa.org/anniversary/. As Walt Whitman said,


“To Thee, Old Cause!”

Rick Rosendall
President

March 16, 2014

Graham: 'Importance of openly gay elected officials'

Jim_Graham_insert_c_Washington_Blade_by_Jeff_Surprenant
(Washington Blade file photo by Jeff Surprenant)

Ward 1 Councilmember Jim Graham has an op-ed in the current issue of the Blade explaining why it's crucial that we keep electing him because he's gay. Or something.

Graham is right that he has not run in the past solely as a gay candidate. That is why I find it peculiar that he is placing such emphasis on the “seat at the table” argument (in this case meaning keeping him in the seat) now that a combination of longevity in office and ethical problems have made him vulnerable. Here he mischaracterizes Mark Lee’s argument in the referenced column, which is something he does a lot. At the Stein Club endorsement forum a few weeks ago, he falsely claimed that GLAA had given him no credit for his long record of service, when in fact we had given him every available record-related point. He also gave the impression that his entire disagreement with GLAA was over ABC reform, a ploy also used by Muriel Bowser at the subsequent Stein mayoral forum. The ploy did not work for either candidate.

Jim does deserve props for his long service. Indeed, GLAA awarded him our hard-to-get championship point for steering to passage the LGBT youth homelessness bill, for which we also gave him a shout-out in our policy brief. But the LGBT community’s seat at the table is about much more than having one of us on the DC Council. It is about hard-earned clout won over decades of smart and sustained advocacy, productive relationships with policy makers, and involvement in our communities all across town. Anti-gay campaigning has been a loser in DC for more than three decades. In race after race here, multiple pro-LGBT candidates are battling for our support, which increasingly hinges on other issues. One such issue in the Ward One race was raised by someone who pointed out that 16 years ago, in his successful first run for the Council, Jim said that incumbent Frank Smith had been in office for 16 years, and that was an awfully long time. Jim is now in his 16th year on the Council. Let him make his best case against his challenger; surely that best case is not that he is gay.

As a voter I care not about who you sleep with, but what you will do on my issues–and Jim disagrees with GLAA on some of our issues. That is his right, but he can hardly blame people for noticing. I note that Brianne Nadeau has a thinner record on LGBT issues, which is reflected in her rating from GLAA being lower than Jim’s. The voters in their wisdom will sort all this out.

March 11, 2014

GLAA Revises Ratings for Evans, 2 Others

Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance of Washington, DC
P.O. Box 75265
Washington, D.C. 20013
www.glaa.org
www.glaaforum.org (blog)

For Release:
Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Contact: Rick Rosendall
(202) 328-6278

GLAA Revises Ratings for Evans, 2 Others

At its March 11 monthly meeting, the Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance considered new information provided by D.C. mayoral candidate Jack Evans, D.C. Council Chair candidate Calvin Gurley, and Ward 6 D.C. Council candidate Darrel Thompson, all Democrats. GLAA adjusted the rating of each. Evans now has a rating of +9, Gurley has a rating of +1, and Thompson has a rating of +3. GLAA has a longstanding policy of reserving the right to re-rate candidates based on new information received during the campaign. GLAA ratings are on a scale of -10 to +10.

Jack Evans (original rating +8, revised rating +9) had already submitted a strong questionnaire, and had received the maximum record points for his long track record of solid support of LGBT issues. He has the longest record of support of any candidate. The hard-to-get championship point was initially withheld because it is about recent leadership on an LGBT issue, and his initial submission did not document the required extra effort. On February 14, subsequent to GLAA’s initial ratings announcement, Evans provided documentation to show that in the summer of 2013 he drafted and moved legislative language in the Committee on Finance and Revenue, which he chairs, entitled the "Marriage Equality Estate Tax Clarification Act of 2013." As he explained, "This subtitle directs the Chief Financial Officer to make any changes to estate tax forms, instructions and regulations necessary to make it clear that all married couples are eligible for estate tax benefits regardless of whether such marriage is recognized under federal law." GLAA agrees that his action as committee chair merits a full championship point.

Calvin H. Gurley (original rating 0, revised rating +1) submitted a late questionnaire response on February 20; GLAA has re-rated him accordingly. His answers, however, are uninformed, argumentative, and lack substance. He does agree with GLAA on some issues. For that, and for having supported marriage equality against opposition in Ward 5, his original rating of zero has been upgraded to +1.

Darrel Thompson (original rating +2, revised rating +3) was originally rated solely on his questionnaire, which GLAA found weak. On February 26, he submitted information on his record. He was awarded a record point based on his work as a senior staffer to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, former House Majority Leader Dick Gephardt, and then-Senator Barack Obama on a series of legislative initiatives advancing LGBT concerns.

GLAA President Rick Rosendall stated, "The leading development in this round of mid-campaign adjustments is the revised rating of Democrat Jack Evans (+9), which puts him in a tight cluster with Democratic Mayor Vincent Gray (+10) and fellow Democratic challenger Tommy Wells (+9.5). GLAA does not make endorsements in partisan races."

All three re-rated candidates’ revised submissions are provided on GLAA’s website at the links below.

Jack Evans, Democrat for Mayor
Revised rating: +9
http://glaa.org/archive/2014/mqevans.pdf

Calvin H. Gurley, Democrat for Council Chair
Revised rating: +1
http://glaa.org/archive/2014/cqgurley.pdf

Darrel Thompson, Democrat for Ward 6 Council
Revised rating: +3
http://glaa.org/archive/2014/cqthompson.pdf

A revised breakdown of the ratings points awarded to each candidate is online at:
http://glaa.org/archive/2014/primaryratingsbreakdown.shtml


Founded in 1971, the Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance of Washington (GLAA) is an all-volunteer, non-partisan, non-profit political organization that defends the civil rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in the Nation's Capital. GLAA lobbies the D.C. Council, monitors government agencies, educates and rates local candidates, and works in coalitions to defend the safety, health, and equal rights of LGBT families. GLAA remains the nation's oldest continuously active gay and lesbian civil rights organization.

###

March 10, 2014

April 30 - GLAA 43rd anniversary awards reception

Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance of Washington, DC
P.O. Box 75265
Washington, D.C. 20013
www.glaa.org
www.glaaforum.org (blog)

For Release:
Friday, March 7, 2014
Contact: Rick Rosendall
(202) 328-6278

GLAA Announces 2014 Distinguished Service Awards

The Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance of Washington, D.C., is pleased to announce its 2014 Distinguished Service Award recipients. GLAA presents awards to local individuals and organizations that have served the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community in the national capital area. The awards will be presented at GLAA's 43rd Anniversary Reception on Wednesday, April 30 from 6:30 to 8:30 pm at Policy Restaurant and Lounge at 1904 14th Street, NW (at T Street). Tickets are $55 and can be purchased at http://www.glaa.org/anniversary/ or calling (202) 667-5139; a range of donor levels is also available.

GLAA's 2014 Distinguished Service Award recipients are:

  • Jerry Clark
  • Alison Gill
  • Earl D. Fowlkes, Jr.

Continue reading "April 30 - GLAA 43rd anniversary awards reception" »

GLAA submits testimony on Office of Police Complaints

Date:March 10, 2014
To:Tommy Wells, Chair
Committee on Public Safety and Judiciary
From:Rick Rosendall, President
Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance
Subject:Testimony on Office of Police Complaints

Please include this as testimony for the record on the Performance Oversight Hearing held by your committee on March 7, 2014.

I am Rick Rosendall, President of the Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance, which has been fighting for LGBT equality in the District since 1971.

The independent Office of Police Complaints (OPC) grew out of the recommendations of a task force in the late 1990s in which I represented GLAA. OPC employs the best practices of citizen oversight of law enforcement, with the goal of improving public confidence in the police. OPC Executive Director Philip K. Eure and his staff have shown expertise, integrity, and a commitment to fairness for all – not just those who file complaints, but those against whom they are filed, and the wider community from which both are drawn.

The Office of Police Complaints (OPC) released its Annual Report for Fiscal Year 2013 on March 4. As it summarized in its news release:

Continue reading "GLAA submits testimony on Office of Police Complaints" »

February 14, 2014

GLAA candidate ratings: reports and reactions

GLAA's candidate ratings for the April 1 primary were released on Thursday. Here are some news reports and reactions.

Washington Post: Mike DeBonis

City Paper: Gray, Wells Top LGBT Activist Rankings

Blade: Gray, Mendelson receive top GLAA ratings for April primary

Washingtonian: Gray, Wells, Evans Get High Marks From LGBT Activists

Red State: Right-wing blogger Erick Erickson embraces identity politics, slamming GLAA for rating Libertarian mayoral candidate Bruce Majors based on his positions on our issues rather than giving him high marks just for being gay.

Candidate reactions:

Vincent Gray (Mayoral race)

Nate Bennett-Fleming (At-Large Council race)

Charles Allen (Ward 6 Council race)

February 13, 2014

Most D.C. mayoral hopefuls favor liquor-licensing reform

Mark Lee's business column in the Blade this week discusses mayoral candidates' responses to GLAA's question on liquor license reform. Here's a portion:

The question, one of 12, is as follows: “Will you support strengthening Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) reforms by eliminating license protests filed by citizens associations and ad hoc groups, requiring stakeholders to participate in the community process provided by the Advisory Neighborhood Commission?”

Best Answer: Mayor Vincent Gray. He’s a “YES” and demonstrates his keen understanding of the need for reform while clearly enunciating why: “Frivolous licensing protests filed with the Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration (ABRA) stand in the way of businesses operating free of special operating protocols. Protests by ad hoc groups…should not interfere with the issuance of ABC licenses to businesses.”

Great Answer: D.C. Council member Jack Evans. He’s a “YES” and provides a rationale: “I have heard from both residents and businesses that the ABC Board takes too long to make decisions. I think this needs to be a more decisive process…Dragging out some of these cases months and months really can be very unfair to everyone and unnecessarily divisive.”

February 10, 2014

February 11 - GLAA candidate ratings meeting

GLAA will hold its ratings meeting for candidates in the April 1 D.C. primary election on Tuesday, February 11 at 7 pm in Room 120 at the John A. Wilson Building, 1350 Pennsylvania Avenue NW. We have a couple of dozen candidate questionnaires to go through, so we will begin on time. Only GLAA members can vote on ratings. GLAA does not do endorsements in partisan races. Instead, we do non-partisan ratings based on each candidate's positions and record on LGBT issues.

The meeting agenda is here.

Candidate questionnaire responses are online here. Please review them beforehand if you plan to attend the meeting.

January 30, 2014

Maine Supreme Court rules in favor of transgender girl in Orono school bathroom case

Nicole_Maines
(Photo of Nicole Maines by Robert F. Bukaty, AP/Pool)

Bangor Daily News reports:

The Maine Supreme Judicial Court on Thursday guaranteed the right of a transgender child to use the school bathroom designated for the gender with which he or she identifies.

It is the first time any court in the nation has ruled it is unlawful to force a transgender child to use the school bathroom designated for the sex he or she was born with rather than the one with which the child identifies, according to the Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders of Boston, which represented the girl and her family.

Mara Keisling of the National Center for Transgender Equality writes:

This is a huge victory for students. The decision is thoughtful and dead on. Congratulations to the Maines family and GLAD.

January 09, 2014

Blade: D.C. activists seek to ‘build on victories’ in 2014

Lou Chibbaro at the Blade reports on GLAA's 2014 Election Project. As he notes, the theme of our new policy brief is building on LGBT victories as we address remaining challenges.

January 08, 2014

Mark Lee: GLAA to score candidates on liquor protest reform

GLAA_insert_c_Washington_Blade_by_Pete_Exis
(Washington Blade file photo by Pete Exis)

Blade business columnist Mark Lee agrees with GLAA on liquor protest reform. (To be clear: this issue is one of 12 questions on our candidate questionnaire. You can find the full questionnaires for Mayor and D.C. Council at GLAA's Election Project page.) Lee writes:

No segment of D.C. residents is more familiar with the long-dysfunctional manner by which the District government conducts licensing procedures for alcohol-serving establishments than the LGBT community. Gay residents have witnessed firsthand and over many years a lengthy litany of renegade objections to the bar, restaurant, lounge and nightclub businesses serving our community and the neighborhoods we populate and patronize.

For that reason, it comes as no surprise that the Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance (GLAA) has included in the organization’s mayoral and D.C. Council candidate rating questionnaire an inquiry whether the vote-seeker supports strengthening “reform of alcohol licensing to eliminate standing for non-representative groups.” ...

The ability of “Gang of 5” ad hoc groups – referencing the minimum number of objectors required – and special interest “citizens groups” to directly intervene in opposing licensing applications or renewals allows a vocal minority to exercise a power greater than the community as a whole. Such protests delay licensing and cost local small businesses tens of thousands of dollars – all in an attempt to deny or delay approvals in the hope of extracting operating restrictions.

Fairness advocates, gay and lesbian business owners, and an overwhelming majority of residents support requiring “stakeholders to participate in an equitable community process, as best provided by means of the ‘great weight’ accorded” the elected Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC), as GLAA specifies in its policy summary.

Click here for the write-up on this issue in GLAA's 2014 policy brief, "Building on Victory."

January 07, 2014

January 14 - Tom Chorlton memorial service in Charleston

Chorlton
Thomas Patrick Chorlton
February 26, 1946 - January 5, 2014

Our friend Deacon Maccubbin sends the following obituary on our late friend Tom Chorlton, including memorial service details, and encourages us to share with all who knew him:

Thomas Patrick Chorlton, 67, of Folly Beach, South Carolina, a Professor of American History at the College of Charleston, passed away Sunday, January 5, 2014 following an extended illness.

Tom was born February 26, 1946, in Belleville, Illinois. Nine months later, he was adopted by the late Wes and Bette Chorlton, He was a graduate of St. Louis University and earned his master's degree from Webster University. He was a Professor of American History at College of Charleston.

During the past 10 years, Professor Chorlton taught classes in the Political Science Department of the College of Charleston. His subjects included American Government, Contemporary Political Issues, the Politics of the American Revolution, the American Presidency, and LGBT Politics. He inspired countless students to get involved in the political system, constantly reminding them that “Democracy is a Participatory Sport.” He is also the author of “The First American Republic: 1774-1789,” a book John Bicknell, columnist for Roll Call newspaper, said “gives life to long-forgotten figures of American history who deserved to be remembered.”

Continue reading "January 14 - Tom Chorlton memorial service in Charleston" »

January 03, 2014

GLAA releases candidate questionnaires, LGBT policy brief

Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance of Washington, DC
P.O. Box 75265
Washington, D.C. 20013
www.glaa.org

For Release:
Friday, January 3, 2014
Contact: Rick Rosendall
202-328-6278


GLAA releases candidate questionnaires, LGBT policy brief


The Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance of Washington, D.C., today launches its 2014 Election Project and releases its questionnaires for Mayoral and D.C. Council candidates plus its LGBT policy brief, "Building on Victory."

GLAA President Rick Rosendall stated, "GLAA gathered input from a wide range of local LGBT advocates including the DC Center, DC Trans Coalition (DCTC), Gays and Lesbians Opposing Violence (GLOV) and others. The result is 'Building on Victory,' the most comprehensive single document advancing LGBT issues in D.C."

On January 3, 2014, GLAA will email its questionnaires and policy brief to candidates in the April 1 D.C. primary election. The deadline for receipt of candidate responses is February 6, after which GLAA will assign ratings to the primary candidates (on a scale of -10 to +10) based on their questionnaire responses and their records on LGBT issues. GLAA does not endorse candidates in partisan elections.

Continue reading "GLAA releases candidate questionnaires, LGBT policy brief" »

October 11, 2013

Two years later, Frank Kameny remains unburied

Kamenyin2005bytwp
(Photo by Jahi Chikwendiu, The Washington Post)

Happy Coming Out Day. Two years ago, shortly before a GLAA meeting, Officer Justin Markiewicz of the Gay and Lesbian Liaison Unit, who was there, got a text message and told me that Frank Kameny was dead. Two years later, Frank's remains remain unburied. The Blade reports.

Here are remarks I prepared for a burial on March 3, 2012, which was canceled due to a legal dispute. I would rather focus on Frank today than on the unnecessary conflict that followed his death.

September 30, 2013

Eulogy for Barrett L. Brick, 1954-2013

Barrett_Brick_insert_courtesy_GLAA
(Photo of Barrett Brick by Patsy Lynch)

I delivered the following eulogy at a memorial service for former GLAA President Barrett Brick on Sunday, September 29 in Washington, D.C. The room was overflowing with his friends. In addition to Rabbi Laurie Green of Congregation Bet Mishpachah, other speakers were Barrett's husband Antonio Ruffini, Noah Wofsy, and Sterling Washington of the Mayor's Office of GLBT Affairs.


Eulogy for Barrett Brick
Richard J. Rosendall
President, Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance
September 29, 2013


Barrett Brick moved in many circles and had many friends. Over three decades of friendship I encountered many of his affiliations—not just GLAA but the FCC, the ABA's Committee on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity, Immigration Equality, Lambda Salaam Shalom, Lambda Sci Fi, Reel Affirmations, the Screaming Eagles and DC United, and astronomical adventures like watching lunar eclipses from the Altamont rooftop or viewing a comet from the Manassas Battlefield.

Perhaps his father’s early death made him mindful that time is short. He was incredibly productive as an activist. His efforts as executive director of the World Congress of Gay and Lesbian Jewish Organizations helped the International Lesbian and Gay Association in its quest for consultative status at the United Nations. He pressed, with Michael Petrelis and Margaret Cantrell of ACT UP, for gay inclusion in the State Department's annual country human rights reports. He pressed, with Craig Howell of GLAA, for gay inclusion in the Holocaust Memorial Museum. He intervened with President Carlos Menem of Argentina on behalf of a gay rights group there. He was an early voice for inclusion of the faith community in LGBT movement organizing, which became key to our strategy for winning marriage equality in D.C. With Craig, Bob Summersgill, and me, he pressed the D.C. Office of Human Rights to get rid of the case backlog and put up educational posters around town.

In all of this, he was guided by Hillel: "If I am not for myself, who will be for me? But if I am only for myself, who am I? And if not now, when?" He was a graceful and perceptive writer. He had a gift for making connections that I could only marvel at. As an adviser and collaborator, he was beyond price.

Continue reading "Eulogy for Barrett L. Brick, 1954-2013" »

September 23, 2013

Former GLAA president Barrett Brick dies at 59

Barrett_Brick_at_GLAA_Anniversary_insert_c_Washington_Blade_by_Henry_Linser
(Photo of Barrett Brick by Henry Linser, Washington Blade)

Former GLAA President Barrett Brick, who also played a leadership role in many other organizations, died at the Manor Care nursing home in Bethesda, Maryland on Sunday, September 22 at age 59. He had been battling cancer. His husband Antonio Ruffini of South Africa was at his bedside. Barrett will be sorely missed by us at GLAA, both as a colleague and a friend. Surviving him is his husband, Antonio Ruffini of South Africa, who was at his bedside when he passed away.

Barrett's contributions were many and varied. He was an early voice for inclusion of the faith community in the LGBT movement — decades before that was a key part of our successful strategy for marriage equality in DC. As a science fiction fan, he helped organize a Gaylaxicon convention. As a soccer fan, he helped organize a gay football world cup. He often led services at Congregation Bet Mishpachah, and worked to build bridges between gay Jews and Muslims.

Just in the early 1990s, He pressed successfully for gay inclusion in the State Department's annual country human rights reports, pressed for gay inclusion in the Holocaust Memorial Museum, and intervened personally with the president of Argentina on behalf of a gay rights group there.

At a personal level, he was a close collaborator and sounding board for virtually every issue I worked on as a leader of GLAA. He was smart and wise and funny, and was very good at keeping things in perspective. He endured his illness with such stoicism and grace that some of us may have been more optimistic than was warranted.

Barrett was a longtime supporter of Immigration Equality. He consistently put his money and mind and energy where his heart was. And he had a great heart.

In a town swarming with partisan hackery, Barrett consistently stood up for principle and put the greater good before self-interest. As a collaborator and advisor he was beyond price. His wide-ranging interests brought him multiple circles of friends. I hope that his graceful and perceptive drashot (sermons) for Bet Mishpachah will be collected and published to inspire the wider readership they deserve.

Here are several informative links:

Barrett's remains were buried on Tuesday, September 24 at 1:00 pm in the Brick family plot at Beth Israel Memorial Park in Woodbridge, N.J. A memorial service will be held in DC on Sunday, September 29 at 5 pm at the party room of the Van Ness East Condominium at 2939 Van Ness Street, NW.

Update: Our friend Michael Petrelis writes from San Francisco:

A fond memory, among many, that I have of Barrett is from the early 1990s. The State Department had begun issuing human rights reports and the first or second year of them saw a gay-related citation. I called the author of the report, requested a meeting with him to improve the gay citations in future reporter and he agreed to a meeting. My ACT UP colleague Margaret Cantrell said she would attend and we invited Barrett to join us. I think he was head of the World Jewish Congress at the time. Without hesitation, Barrett agreed to participate in the meeting and he obtained his own copy of the annual report so he could be familiar with it. At the meeting, he was the older brother to Margaret and I as we lobbied State to expand mention of global gay people and HR abuses. Barrett will always be my older brother with a big and loving heart, and fierce mind. RIP my friend.

Thanks, Mike.

September 10, 2013

October 12 - Dan Savage event at Jewish Literary Festival

Dansavage1012

GLAA is proud to co-sponsor the Dan Savage appearance in D.C. on Saturday, October 12 as part of the Hyman S. & Freda Bernstein Jewish Literary Festival:

Continue reading "October 12 - Dan Savage event at Jewish Literary Festival" »

September 10 - GLAA monthly meeting

Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance of Washington, D.C.

Friends,

Please join us this evening for GLAA's monthly meeting, and bring your concerns. Here's a link to our meeting agenda:
http://www.glaa.org/archive/2013/meetingagenda20130910.pdf

Here are the details:
GLAA monthly meeting
Tuesday, September 10, 7 pm
Hearing Room 120
John A. Wilson Building

1350 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Metro Center and Federal Triangle Metro stations

There is plenty of work ahead to protect the interests of LGBT people in D.C., despite recent victories. We'd love to have you join us to discuss the latest efforts and future steps.

Among our allies and coalition partners, current efforts include:
* The D.C. Transgender Needs Assessment;
* The launch of the D.C. Anti-Violence Collaborative;
* The continued work of the Center Global project to help asylum seekers who come to D.C.;
* The new DC Health Link marketplace, enrollment for which begins October 1; and
* The Age-Friendly City Program.

Legislation GLAA is focusing on this fall include:
* Bill 20-0032 (surrogacy parenting agreements); and
* Bill 20-0051 (LGBTQ homeless youth).

Last but not least:
GLAA's Election Project 2014. First up is revising our policy brief. A lot has changed, with old issues being resolved and new issues arising. We'll have new questions to ask candidates for Mayor and D.C. Council. Our ratings process, and the educational effort leading up to it, is part of our ongoing relationship with the District's elected officials to advance the rights and interests of our diverse LGBT community.

Message: We've won a lot here in D.C., but we can't go on Auto Pilot. As our friends at NAACP say, "Much has been done. Much remains to be done." We'd love to have you join the effort.

Thanks, and best of luck to everyone on their own efforts. The more we coordinate efforts and share our expertise and experiences, the stronger we all will be.

The struggle continues!

Rick Rosendall
President

August 02, 2013

GLAA to Councilmembers: Do not postpone election of DC AG

Read the letter here. Thanks to former GLAA President Craig Howell for drafting it.

July 22, 2013

More than 1,000 attend Trayvon Martin rally in D.C.

E_Faye_Williams_by_Damien_Salas
Dr. E. Faye Williams at Justice for Trayvon rally, photo by Damien Salas, Washington Blade)

Michael K. Lavers of the Blade reports on Saturday's Justice for Trayvon rally, which was held at the U.S. District Court building on Constitution Avenue, which I attended. I am quoted in the article:

Rick Rosendall, president of the Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance, told the Washington Blade as he attended the D.C. rally that he feels it is important for LGBT Americans to stand in solidarity with African Americans on this issue.

"Our own community crosses every other line of diversity in this country," he said, noting NAACP President Benjamin Todd Jealous and Revs. Dennis and Christine Wiley of Covenant Baptist Church of Christ in Southwest D.C. and Rev. Delman Coates of Mt. Ennon Baptist Church in Clinton, Md., are among those who support marriage rights for same-sex couples. "We are connected to one another inextricably, like it or not. And we damn well better stand together or we will have hell to pay."

July 10, 2013

GLAA praises passage of birth certificate, marriage officiant bills

Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance of Washington, DC
P.O. Box 75265
Washington, D.C. 20013

For Release:
Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Contact: Rick Rosendall
(202) 667-5139

GLAA praises passage of birth certificate, marriage officiant bills


The Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance celebrates the passage of two of our legislative priorities at today’s D.C. Council legislative meeting: Bill 20-142, the JaParker Deoni Jones Birth Certificate Equality Amendment Act of 2013 (which allows people who undergo treatment related to gender transition to obtain original birth certificates that match their gender identity); and Bill 20-118, the Marriage Officiant Amendment Act of 2013 (which expands the list of those who can serve as officiants at couples’ wedding ceremonies). Both bills passed their second readings as part of the consent agenda.

GLAA thanks the members of the Council for passing both bills, in particular:

For Bill 20-142 (birth certificates): Thanks to Councilmember David Catania, who wrote and introduced the bill and named it after JaParker Deoni Jones, a young transgender woman who was murdered at a Metrobus stop in February 2012. Thanks also to Councilmember Yvette Alexander, Chair of the Committee on Health; and Councilmember Tommy Wells, Chair of the Committee on the Judiciary and Public Safety, for seeing the bill through to passage. Thanks also to their committee staff, including (at Health) Senior Policy Advisor Ronald King, Committee Director Rayna Smith, and CM Alexander's Legislative Counsel Terrance Norflis; and (at Judiciary) Committee Director Anne Phelps. Special kudos to Andy Bowen (at DC Trans Coalition) and Lisa Mottet (at National Center for Transgender Equality, formerly at National Gay and Lesbian Task Force) for their leadership as advocates for the bill. Thanks also to those who joined us in testifying for it.

For Bill 20-118 (marriage officiants): Thanks to Councilmember Tommy Wells, who wrote and introduced the bill and shepherded it through his Committee on the Judiciary and Public Safety. Thanks also to Committee Director Anne Phelps. Special kudos to Bob Summersgill for his leadership as an advocate for the bill. Thanks also to those who joined us in testifying for it.

Continue reading "GLAA praises passage of birth certificate, marriage officiant bills" »

June 20, 2013

GLAA supports legalization and regulation of surrogacy parenting agreements

Believe it or not, surrogacy parenting agreements have been illegal in DC for the past twenty years, and can bring a year in jail and a $10,000 fine. I testified for legalization today at the DC Council.

Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance of Washington, D.C.
P.O. Box 75265, Washington, DC 20013

Testimony on Bill 20-32, "Surrogacy Parenting Agreement Act of 2013"

Delivered before the Committee on Judiciary and Public Safety
June 20, 2013


Good morning, Chairman Wells and councilmembers. I am Rick Rosendall, President of the Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance, which has fought for LGBT equality in the District since 1971.

We strongly support the legalization and regulation of surrogacy parenting agreements. This is one of our key legislative goals, and represents a major step in ensuring that the District's family law reflects the reality of our city's diverse families and affords them equal protection. We thank Councilmember Catania for introducing the original draft of Bill 20-32, and we thank the rest of the Council for cosponsoring it. That unanimity reflects the fruits of collective effort over many years by people from across the District to make real our city's motto, "Justitia Omnibus." We also thank your committee staff for their excellent work.

Our advocacy and the District’s family law have been greatly enhanced by the expertise and dedication of our colleague, Professor Nancy Polikoff. We agree with her that this bill should cover traditional surrogacy arrangements in addition to gestational surrogacy arrangements. As she points out, the main difference between the two is the genetic contribution by the traditional surrogate; but central to our evolved concept of parenthood is that genetics are not essential to it. The greater profitability of gestational surrogacy is insufficient reason to regulate it alone rather than both forms of surrogacy. The parties to both types of arrangements need protection.

We have not taken a position on Professor Polikoff's proposal that the surrogate be given 24 hours after the child's birth in which to assert parental rights, though we respect her reasoning that gestation is a form of care and should count more than donation of genetic material. But in that case, we agree with former GLAA President Bob Summersgill that the surrogate, in asserting parental rights, would be breaking the contract and should therefore reimburse the intended parents for their expenses related to the arrangement, plus interest. Regulation is needed here precisely because a surrogacy arrangement is not something to be entered into lightly, without careful consideration of, and legal clarity regarding, the possible implications.

The current law is a relic. Our more recent lawmaking reflects an understanding that love and commitment are what make a family. The District, which was ahead of the national curve in enacting civil marriage equality, must catch up with the new ways by which many families in our city are formed. That is in the best interests of all involved, especially the children.

Thank you.

PDF copy here.

GLAA urges DC Council to defend expanded list of marriage officiants

On Wednesday I sent a letter on behalf of GLAA to all D.C. Council members urging passage of Bill 20-118, the Marriage Officiant Amendment Act of 2013, after it was removed from the consent agenda by Ward 4 Councilmember Muriel Bowser. Here is an excerpt:

I write today concerning the June 18 action in the Committee of the Whole on Bill 20-118, the Marriage Officiant Amendment Act of 2013 – specifically, Councilmember Bowser's placement of the bill on the non-consent agenda for the June 26 additional legislative meeting. We urge members to stand firm in support of the expanded options for marriage officiants and to oppose removing any of those options from the bill.

I testified for the bill on behalf of GLAA at a hearing on March 14, and attended the markup of the bill by the Committee on Judiciary and Public Safety on June 6. Ms. Bowser is a member of the committee, but I did not see her at the markup. While of course any member has the right to remove items from the consent agenda, we are perplexed as to why Ms. Bowser did not raise her concerns earlier in the process....

Ms. Bowser's comments suggest that she thinks it is somehow improper to allow a couple to serve as their own officiants. Once it is understood that this pertains only to the ceremonial aspect, as was made clear on June 18 by Chairman Mendelson and Mr. Wells, her persistent objection makes no sense unless it stems from a confusion of the civil aspect of marriage with the religious aspect. Bill 20-118 deals only with civil marriage. The right of people of faith to solemnize their weddings in the traditional manner is completely unaffected by this legislation.

That being the case, we would strongly object to any attempt by Ms. Bowser to deny couples a particular ceremonial option solely because she (or perhaps a constituent who communicated with her on the subject) is uncomfortable with it. Anyone who wants a third-party officiant will be free under this bill to have one of their choosing. The only difference is the addition of more options to best serve all of the diverse couples who marry in our city....

In the present case, Ms. Bowser's comments about what "just seems odd" to her are redolent of the ... unfortunate impulse to impose one group's religious sensibilities on everyone else by foreclosing options they dislike. But we are more inclusive here in the District. I am confident, therefore, that you will resist any attempt to remove officiant options from the bill.

June 11, 2013

Early round in 2014 Mayor's race: Capital Pride Parade

Tommywellspride2013
(Ward 6 Councilmember Tommy Wells in the 2013 Capital Pride Parade. Photo by Rick Rosendall)

I was one of several local activists interviewed by Blade reporter Lou Chibbaro for a piece on mayoral candidates (announced and anticipated) who marched in Saturday's Capital Pride Parade (Muriel Bowser, Jack Evans, and Tommy Wells, plus Mayor Vincent Gray, who has not yet announced his plans). Here's the part with my comments:

Rick Rosendall, president of the Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance, a non-partisan advocacy group that rates candidates based on their record and positions on LGBT-related issues, expressed caution about basing a decision on who to back solely on a candidate’s general statements of support.

“All friends are not created equal,” he said. “It behooves us to look inside the wrappers and compare the candidates’ records on translating their friendly words into results,” said Rosendall. “But that’s for another day – it’s Pride, and we have much to celebrate.”

Note: My choice of photos does not imply an endorsement. I just happened to get a decent shot of Tommy and his contingent.

June 06, 2013

June 11 - GLAA Meeting

Friends,

Happy LGBT Pride! It's been a busy year for LGBT advocacy in D.C., and below is a list of highlights.

GLAA's next meeting will be on Tuesday, June 11 at 7:00 pm in Room 104 of the John A. Wilson Building at 1350 Pennsylvania Avenue NW. (Closest Metro stations: Metro Center, Federal Triangle.) Click here for the meeting agenda. Please bring your concerns and issues you want us to address, and your ideas and suggestions for our next efforts. I am going to propose that we change from the quarterly meeting schedule that we implemented earlier this year to a monthly meeting on the 2nd Tuesday of each month. (I expect, however, that we will take the months of July and August off.)

Three bills that GLAA called for in our Agenda: 2012 policy brief are currently before the D.C. Council:

  1. Bill 20-118, the Marriage Officiant Amendment Act of 2013, passed the Committee on the Judiciary and Public Safety on June 6 on a voice vote. The bill allows people other than ministers, judges, and court clerks to serve as marriage officiants, thus giving more options to couples planning their weddings. GLAA testified for the bill at a hearing on March 14.
  2. Bill 20-142, the JaParker Deoni Jones Birth Certificate Equality Amendment Act of 2013, passed the Committee on Health on June 5 and Committee on the Judiciary and Public Safety on June 6 on voice votes. It was jointly assigned to Health and Judiciary. Thanks to Councilmember David Catania for introducing the original bill. With the changes requested by GLAA and our allies, this is model legislation allowing people to obtain new birth certificates, in particular transgender people who have faced considerable ID-related discrimination over their gender identity. Thanks to Andy Bowen of DC Trans Coalition and Lisa Mottet of NGLTF (who has recently moved to the National Center for Transgender Equality) for their leadership on this bill. GLAA testified for the bill at a joint hearing by the Health and Judiciary committees on June 16.
  3. Bill 20-32, the Surrogacy Parenting Agreement Act of 2013. We will testify at a hearing scheduled for June 20. This bill legalizes and regulated parenting surrogacy agreements. At present such arrangements are against the law in the District, which causes hardship on many LGBT families. Thanks to Councilmember David Catania for introducing the original bill. A redraft is underway by committee director Anne Phelps in consultation with LGBT family law experts Nancy Polikoff and Michele Zavos. Here's a link to GLAA's discussion of the issue in Agenda: 2012.

Continue reading "June 11 - GLAA Meeting" »

May 07, 2013

GLAA Awards pics

Metro Weekly has posted Ward Morrison's photos from GLAA's 42nd anniversary awards reception. Thanks, Ward, for doing such a lovely job as usual.

April 26, 2013

Speech of the night from GLAA reception: Jason A. Terry

Jason_terry

Congrats again to all five honorees from GLAA's anniversary reception on April 25. For me, the highlight of the evening was this inspiring speech by the remarkable Jason Terry of the DC Trans Coalition.

JASON A. TERRY
REMARKS TO GLAA AWARDS RECEPTION
25 APRIL 2013


Thank you to GLAA, and especially to Rick, Charles, Kevin, Gary, and Alison, for this distinct – and truly undeserved – honor. Thanks also to those who have shaped me, guided me, and inspired me all through life: the fierce and fearsome Appalachian women who raised me; my three grandfathers who taught me patience and calm; the teachers, choir directors, and old school activists who lit my path, taught me discipline, and gave me hope; and to my beloved and ever-growing community of rabble rousers here in DC who make this city more livable, and bring us closer to peace. Chief among those, I have to thank Ruby Corado for teaching me everything I know. And, of course, I must thank my partner Elijah Edelman, who is with me not just in life, but in an ongoing journey towards justice, and who, without his unending support, absolutely incredible intellect, and remarkable strength, I would be less than half the activist I am.

Continue reading "Speech of the night from GLAA reception: Jason A. Terry" »

Thanks for last night....

Thanks to everyone who made GLAA's 42nd anniversary reception a success on Thursday - from the fabulous community organizers and change agents we honored to our friends in high places to public-spirited business leaders and donors at every level who support our advocacy.

Beyond the champagne and hors d'oeuvres, the gathering was a reminder of the cooperation it takes to create change. We even had a taste of politicians rewriting history, in accidental tribute to the GWB presidential library opening. (We can blame the cocktails.) "Thanks for holding on," one honoree said to me. And that's the key thing: holding on. It hasn't been easy, and we're not done, but look how far we've come. Washington takes a lot of knocks, but we are blessed to live in this city.

Later I'll post the speeches and presentations on GLAA's main website, and perhaps post a few highlights here (though it's a lovely day and I'm heading to the park for some sunshine and fresh air); but for the moment I want to thank everyone for helping us celebrate. As Paul Kuntzler said in the Founder's Toast, "Much has been done. Much remains to be done. Here's to the cause."

April 11, 2013

Rosendall introduces Rep. Keith Ellison at ACLU Bill of Rights Dinner

Standly Ellison Rosendall Carliner

(ACLU-NCA Executive Director Benétta M. Standly, Rep. Keith Ellison, Rick Rosendall, ACLU-NCA President Deborah Carliner. Photo by Lisa Helfert)

On Thursday, April 11, I had the honor of introducing Congressman Keith Ellison as the keynote speaker at the annual Bill of Rights dinner of ACLU of the Nation's Capital, which was held at the Omni Shoreham Hotel. My prepared remarks are below (I added a few comments on the fly). It was a fine evening celebrating and recommitting to our coalition efforts to uphold civil liberties, with a special focus on marriage equality. The honorees were NAACP President Benjamin Todd Jealous, Pastor Delman Coates of Clinton, MD, and Albert Foer. I was pleased to serve on ACLU-NCA's dinner committee.

Good evening. Keith Ellison of Minnesota's Fifth District is a civil rights attorney and the first Muslim elected to the United States Congress. Now in his fourth term, he is, among other things, Co-Chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus and Vice-Chair of the LGBT Caucus. His roots as a community activist are reflected in his congressional priorities: "promoting peace, prosperity for working families, environmental sustainability, and civil and human rights."

Late in 2006, Congressman-elect Ellison said he would take his ceremonial oath of office using the holy book of his faith. Radio host Dennis Prager, apparently unfamiliar with the First Amendment, was outraged and demanded that it not be permitted. Ellison's response was sublime: he borrowed Thomas Jefferson's copy of the Qu'ran from the Library of Congress. What a powerful act of political symbolism.

Continue reading "Rosendall introduces Rep. Keith Ellison at ACLU Bill of Rights Dinner" »

April 02, 2013

April 25 - GLAA awards reception

Please join us for GLAA's 42nd Anniversary reception on April 25 at the Washington Plaza Hotel, where we will honor five people for their community service and rededicate ourselves to equality and justice for all LGBT people in the nation's capital. Click here to order your tickets or donate online. Thanks! News release on honorees is here.

Dsainvitehalfpage

March 25, 2013

March 26 - United for Marriage rally

United-for-marriage

The rally for marriage equality at the Supreme Court is set for 8:30 am on Tuesday, March 26 at First and East Capitol Streets. Click here to sign up.

March 13, 2013

Frumin and Bonds top GLAA's D.C. Council candidate ratings

Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance of Washington, DC
P.O. Box 75265, Washington, DC 20013

March 13, 2013
Contact: Rick Rosendall, President
(202) 667-5139

Frumin and Bonds top GLAA's D.C. Council candidate ratings

Matthew Frumin topped the ratings by the Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance (GLAA) candidate ratings in the April 23 special election for At-Large DC Council with a score of +7. Councilmember Anita Bonds earned +6.5. Former Councilmember Michael A. Brown earned +6. They were the highest-rated candidates in this race, but Perry Redd, Elissa Silverman, and Patrick Mara had scores that followed closely behind. No candidate received a negative rating. GLAA held its ratings meeting on March 12.

The following are explanations of the individual ratings for D.C. Council special election candidates.

Democratic candidate Matthew Frumin (+7) agreed with GLAA on every issue and showed a strong understanding of the issues. He co-sponsored a resolution in favor of a marriage equality law with the other members of ANC 3E on May 14, 2009. It passed unanimously. The resolution was timed for the marriage recognition bill and submitted as testimony later on the marriage equality bill.

Democratic incumbent Anita Bonds (+6.5) agreed with GLAA on every issue. Her questionnaire showed a good understanding of the issues. Her record in favor of LGBT rights goes back many years.

Democratic candidate Michael A. Brown (+6) wrote over his 2012 response instead of retyping the questionnaire, which had several changes for 2013. He agrees with GLAA on nearly every issue. He added no new substance. He voted reliably for all of GLAA's issues in his one term on the council.

Statehood-Green candidate Perry Redd (+5.5) agreed with GLAA on every issue, demonstrated a reasonable understanding of the issues, and has some record of support of gay people and issues.

Democratic candidate Elissa Silverman (+5.5) agreed with GLAA on every issue. Her questionnaire showed a fair level of understanding the issues. Her record reporting on LGBT issues goes back many years.

Republican candidate Patrick Mara (+5) agreed with GLAA on most positions, but disagreed on issues including school vouchers and liquor licensing reform, and offered limited substance. His advocacy for marriage equality, including his lobbying of Republicans in Congress not to interfere in the District's decision on the matter, earned him one of the highest record-related scores in this field of candidates (see points breakdown).

Democratic candidate Paul Zukerberg (+2) agreed with GLAA on most issues. He provided almost no substance. His advocacy for medical marijuana was noted.

Continue reading "Frumin and Bonds top GLAA's D.C. Council candidate ratings" »

March 07, 2013

Blade: Council race heats up

Lou Chibbaro reports on the significant support that Republican candidate Patrick Mara appears to be winning from gay and Democratic voters in the April 23 special election for an At-Large seat on the D.C. Council.

GLAA's ratings meeting will be held at 7 pm on Tuesday, March 12 in Room 120 of the John A. Wilson Building, 1350 Pennsylvania Ave., NW. Check out our Elections Project.

February 18, 2013

GLAA Announces 2013 Distinguished Service Awards

Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance of Washington, DC
P.O. Box 75265
Washington, D.C. 20013
www.glaa.org
www.glaaforum.org (blog)

For Release:
Monday, February 18, 2013

Contact: Rick Rosendall
(202) 667-5139

GLAA Announces 2013 Distinguished Service Awards

The Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance of Washington, D.C., is pleased to announce its 2013 Distinguished Service Award recipients. GLAA presents awards to local individuals and organizations that have served the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community in the national capital area. The awards will be presented at GLAA’s 42nd Anniversary Reception on Thursday, April 25 from 6:30 to 9:00 pm at the Washington Plaza Hotel at 10 Thomas Circle, NW. Tickets are $55 and can be purchased by contacting GLAA at equal@glaa.org or (202) 667-5139; a range of donor levels is also available.

GLAA’s 2013 Distinguished Service Award recipients are:

  • Diana Bruce, DC Public Schools
  • Clarence J. Fluker
  • Brent Minor
  • Peter Rosenstein
  • Jason A. Terry

Continue reading "GLAA Announces 2013 Distinguished Service Awards" »

February 05, 2013

Feb. 23 - memorial gathering for Dan Massey

Dan_Massey

Our friend Dana Beyer, Executive Director of Gender Rights Maryland, has a lovely eulogy at HuffPost for D.C. activist, sexual freedom advocate, and GLAA member Dan Massey, who passed away on January 28 at age 70.

Dan was a gentle and generous soul, and will be missed by the many people he helped and inspired. Our hearts go out in particular to Dan's wife and soulmate, GLAA Secretary Alison Gardner.

Update: A memorial gathering will be held for Dan on Saturday, February 23 at 1:30 pm at the Josephine Butler Center overlooking Meridian Hill/Malcolm X Park at 2437 15th Street, NW.

January 28, 2013

GLAA releases LGBT policy brief, questionnaire for special election

Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance of Washington, D.C.
P.O. Box 75265
Washington, D.C. 20013
www.glaa.org
www.glaaforum.org (blog)

For Release: Monday, January 28, 2013

Contact: Rick Rosendall 202-667-5139

GLAA releases LGBT policy brief, questionnaire for special election

The Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance of Washington, D.C., today launches its 2013 Election Project and releases both its questionnaire for D.C. Council candidates and its policy brief on local LGBT issues in Washington, D.C., "Agenda: 2013." This updated compilation of local advocacy on a wide range of issues is intended for candidates in the April 23 special election for At-Large Councilmember as well as journalists, activists, and the general public. "Agenda: 2013" is online, in both PDF and HTM formats, at:
http://tinyurl.com/glaa2013pdf
http://tinyurl.com/glaa2013htm

GLAA's D.C. Council candidate questionnaire is online at: http://www.glaa.org/archive/2013/cqspecial.pdf

GLAA's Election Project 2013 main page is at: http://www.glaa.org/archive/2013/election2013.shtml

The "Agenda: 2013" policy brief is divided into six broad subject areas: Marriage and Family, Public Health, Public Safety and Judiciary, Human Rights, Youth and Seniors, and Consumers and Businesses. It is prefaced by a two-page Action Item Summary listing specific actions GLAA seeks from D.C. officials. Included are 88 footnotes to provide documentation and to facilitate further investigation of the issues raised.

The following are some of the legislative and oversight actions GLAA seeks from D.C. Councilmembers:

  • Pass Bill 20-0032, "Surrogacy Parenting Agreement Act of 2013."
  • Repeal the so-called Prostitution Free Zones (PFZs) law, which facilitates anti-transgender profiling.
  • Allow for the issuance of new birth certificates for individuals who undergo treatment related to gender transition; end the requirement for publishing notice of a name change in the newspaper; and allow issuance of new birth certificates via administrative process instead of a court order.
  • Ensure enforcement of LGBT nondiscrimination policies in District homeless shelters and transitional housing.
  • Ensure that all health insurance policies sold and used in DC cover the full spectrum of transgender health care needs.
  • Enforce the anti-bullying law in all D.C. public and charter schools.
  • Ensure equal Medicaid spousal impoverishment protections for same-sex partners.
  • Eliminate legal standing for ad hoc protest groups and citizens associations in liquor licensing cases, to permit input by all community stakeholders via the great weight already accorded Advisory Neighborhood Commissions.

GLAA President Rick Rosendall stated, "It is a tribute to the strength of coalition efforts in the District that 'Agenda: 2013' reflects input from allies across the District's entire LGBT community and its supporters. The resulting policy brief is the most comprehensive single document advancing LGBT issues in D.C."

On January 28, 2013, GLAA will email its questionnaire and policy brief to every candidate in the April 23 special election for At-Large Councilmember. (The filing deadline for the primary was January 23.) The deadline for receipt of candidate responses is March 7, after which GLAA will assign ratings to the primary candidates (on a scale of -10 to +10) based on their questionnaire responses and their records on LGBT issues.

For more information on GLAA and its four decades of nonpartisan advocacy, visit GLAA's main website at www.glaa.org and its blog at www.glaaforum.org.

Founded in 1971, the Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance of Washington (GLAA) is an all-volunteer, non-partisan, non-profit political organization that defends the civil rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in the Nation's Capital. GLAA lobbies the D.C. Council, monitors government agencies, educates and rates local candidates, and works in coalitions to defend the safety, health, and equal rights of gay families. GLAA remains the nation's oldest continuously active gay and lesbian civil rights organization.

###

December 13, 2012

GLAA elects officers for 2013

At GLAA's regular meeting on Tuesday, December 11, the following people were elected as officers of GLAA for 2013:

President:Rick Rosendall
Vice President for Political Affairs:Charles Butler
Vice President for Administration:Kevin Davis
Secretary:Alison Gardner
Treasurer:Gary Collins

Congrats to the newly elected and re-elected officers. We welcome incoming Political VP Charles Butler, who has also been active in GetEqual DC.

Thanks also to outgoing President Miguel Tuason for his service.