By Katrina Chaves
On November 17, Massachusetts passed the Transgender Equal Rights Bill, making this the 16th US state to protect transgender and gender-nonconforming individuals from discrimination by adding protections to the state’s civil rights laws against employment, education, housing and credit discrimination, and adding gender identity and expression to the state’s hate crimes law. Several members of BBWN were among those working for passage of this bill, and we are delighted!
The LGBT advocacy group, Service members Legal Defense Network, is filing a lawsuit in Federal District Court in Boston challenging the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act. SDLN continues to work to ensure that all military families are treated the same, regardless of a service member’s sexual orientation.
315 people attended the 8th Transcending Boundaries Conference November 11-13 in Springfield, MA. Author, performance artist and gender theorist Kate Bornstein, author of 101 Alternatives to Suicide for Teens, Freaks and Other Outlaws was the keynote speaker. The conference closed with a lively “Panel of Awesome: The Future of Our Movement.” Kate Bornstein, Raven Kaldera and Robyn Ochs were on the panel which was moderated by Lorelei Eresis.
Bisexual feminist writer and activist Jennifer Baumgardner, well-known for co-founding the Feminist Speakers Bureau, recently published F’em: Go Goo, Gaga, and Some Thoughts on Balls.
Dr. Margaret Robinson shared some information about the Bi Mental Health project in a recent interview, discussing how bisexual individuals faced layers of biphobia, homophobia, heterosexism and monosexism. Many bi folks are reluctant to seek counseling based on prior negative experiences in therapy, and therefore don’t access much-needed resources.
Chicago’s Center on Halsted has named Michael Oboza its bi liaison, to coordinate bi events and increase visibility.
Founder of the Bi Social Network, Adrienne Williams, also a Chicago resident, recently announced bisexual actor Alan Cumming will be appearing in the “I Am Visible” campaign.
Last month, True Blood actress Evan Rachel Wood revealed she was “terrified” of her bisexuality in her youth, for nobody explained it to her, and was quoted as saying, “I didn’t even know bisexuality was a thing until I heard actress Fairuza Balk talk about it when I was a kid. I was like: ‘Oh my God, you can like both – and that’s OK.’ It was revelation.”
Katrina lives in Rhode Island. She is Bi Women’s News Editor.