NEWS UPDATES

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FBI releases Annual Report on Hate Crimes

This week the FBI released its much-anticipated annual report on hate crimes committed in 2013, and as with past reports, the news is mixed. To start, it’s clear that hate crimes of every sort—and racial, religious and anti-gay hate crimes in particular—continued for another year at a depressingly steady level throughout the country. Click here for more information. 2013 Hate Crimes Report Released



Judge to strike down portion of Ohio’s law.

A federal judge said Friday, 4/ 4/14, that he will order Ohio to recognize out-of-state gay marriages, a move that would strike down part of the state's ban on gay marriages but stop short of forcing it to perform same -sex weddings. To read more, click here.


Premo announces Why Marriage Matters Ohio Campaign Strategy

Michael Premo is the campaign manager for the Why Marriage Matters Ohio campaign. Premo explains "
The work ahead is critical to our ultimate success. Our work requires us to spark conversations about why marriage matters in homes, at workplaces and with our friends, family and neighbors. Experience shows that those who have a conversation with someone who supports marriage equality — and when undecided people think about why they themselves got married — support for marriage equality increases dramatically." View the full strategy in this Op-Ed from the Akron Beacon Journal Online.
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NFL Prospect Michael Sam Comes Out to The World

Michael Sam, a defensive lineman who is just getting ready for his first draft into professional football came out as gay in an interview to the New York Times on Sunday, February 9th, 2014. Mr. Sam said he had sensed rumors spreading and wanted to "tell my story the way I want to tell it". 

To read more about Sam and what this means for his professional football career click here.
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U.S. Senate passes the Employment Non-Discrimination Act


In a bipartisan vote 64-32 the US Senate voted to support the rights of LGBT workers on November 7, 2013. Now it is off to the House! Keep letting your representatives know that all employees should be protected regardless of who they love.

To read more about this historical decision please click here.
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DOMA Overturned

On June 26, 2013 the Defense of Marriage Act was overturned and the U.S. Supreme Court affirmed that all couples deserve equal legal respect and treatment! HISTORY HAS BEEN MADE!! Get the facts on what this means for you and your loved ones by clicking here.

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Republican Senator Portman Supports Marriage Equality

Ohio Republican Senator Rob Portman announces on March 14, 2013 that he supports marriage equality.  Sen. Portman said he reversed his opinion after his 21-year-old son came out as gay.  In response, HRC President Chad Griffin released the following statement:

"When it comes to marriage equality, all Americans are on the same journey toward recognizing our common humanity.  But while 8 in 10 Americans know a gay or lesbian person, it still takes unique courage to speak out publicly for equality.  We are very grateful to Senator Portman for his virtuous stand in support of this civil rights cause."

To see the original article, please click here.

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Major Sports Leagues Prepare for Athletes to Come Out

The National Hockey League, the National Football League, Major League Soccer, the National Basketball Association, and Major League Baseball have all been preparing for athletes in each of their leagues to come out as gay or bisexual.  To learn more about what these leagues are doing, please click here.

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Obama Marks World AIDS Day 

President Obama declared December 1, 2012 World AIDS Day. In his proclamation, he stated, "Creating and AIDS-free generation is a shared  responsibility...We stand at a tipping point in the fight against HIV/AIDS, and working together, we can realize our historic opportunity to bring that fight to an end."  To read the entire proclamation, click here.


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Colin Powell vs. Obama vs. Romney on Gay Marriage

To read more click here

Is gay marriage a federal or states’-rights issue? Colin Powell, Barack Obama, and Mitt Romney disagree on the issue.

Colin Powell made news yesterday by publicly backing gay marriage, an ostensible endorsement of President Obama’s new-found conversion, but he parted with Obama on the president’s view that marriage should be left to the states. On that issue, Powell occupies a space in between Obama and presumptive GOP nominee Mitt Romney.

Powell voiced state/federal agnosticism in his interview Wednesday with CNN’s Wolf Blitzer, saying he’d be comfortable with gay marriage legalized by either level of government.

Continue reading here...

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September 20, 2011: A Historic Day

The End of Don't Ask Don't Tell

'THIS IS A GOOD DAY': OBAMA SIGNS LANDMARK LEGISLATION TO REPEAL 'DON'T ASK, DON'T TELL'

WASHINGTON – Declaring that members of the military will no longer be asked to lie, President Barack Obama fulfilled a campaign promise Wednesday and signed a landmark law repealing the ban on gay men and women serving openly in the armed services. 

Click here for more info.



NEWSLETTER ARCHIVE

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OBAMA ORDERS END TO DEFENSE OF FEDERAL GAY MARRIAGE LAW

 

President Obama, in a major legal policy shift, has directed the Justice Department to stop defending the Defense of Marriage Act -- the 1996 law that bars federal recognition of same-sex marriages -- against lawsuits challenging it as unconstitutional.

Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. sent a letter to Congress on Wednesday saying that the Justice Department will now take the position in court that the act should be struck down as a violation of same-sex couples’ rights to equal protection under the law.

Click here for more info.


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NEW NATIONAL RULES FOR HOSPITAL VISITATION RIGHTS AFFECT LGBT PATIENTS

LGBT patients will have the right to determine who can visit them, including their domestic partners, according to new rules regarding hospital visitation rights set forth by U.S. President Barack Obama. However, the rules do not completely protect the rights of domestic partners in some traumatic circumstances.

Click here for more info.

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ORDINANCES 7905 &7906 PASS IN BOWLING GREEN

Congratulations to the City of Bowling Green, the Bowling Green Coalition for Justice, and the ONE Bowling Green Campaign!
 
The Wood County Board of Elections this morning announced that Ordinances 7905 and 7906 (anti-discrimination ordinances extending protections to LGBT individuals and others) in Bowling Green were approved.

Ordinance 7905 — 4,765 yes; 4,284 no.
Ordinance 7906 — 4,635 yes; 4,338 no.
 
The margin of victory is sufficient to avoid an automatic recount. See http://www.sent-trib.com/front-page/ordinances-7905-7906-pass-in-bg or http://toledoblade.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20101122/NEWS16/101129896 for more information.
 
Thank you to all those individuals who helped in this victory!

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INTERVIEW ON DEADLINE NOW, WGTE

Brenda Spurlin, Rainbow Area Youth and Sherry Tripepi, EqualityToledo were interviewed for Deadline Now of WGTE public media on September 18, 2009 regarding LGBT youth. To view their interview, go to: http://www.wgte.org/wgte/watch/item.asp?item_id=3881

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OHIO NEXT OF KIN REGISTRY

Any holder of a valid Ohio driver license, commercial driver license, temporary permit or identification card can register the person(s) they want considered their "next of kin".  The registry allows an individual to attach  one or two people who should be notified if they are in an emergency situation.  Law enforcement officers will be able to access the information during traffic accidents or other similar emergencies.  The registry includes in its listing of relationship options, partner. The information is kept up to date by the applicant and can be done either online, via mail or in person at the local BMV.

This is a wonderful opportunity for people in relationships that aren't currently recognized by the state of Ohio.  Given the issues around emergency decision-making, access, etc. – this could be a really great thing for our community - particularly if the individual, when listing the name of the person to notify, includes “Legal POA” at the end of the name. Obviously there are no guarantees on how the first responders will use the information, however, it puts us one step closer to being able to notify the ones we love in emergency situations.  Click here to register.

 

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TOLEDO DOMESTIC PARTNERSHIP REGISTRY

In late December 2007, Toledo became the first major city in Ohio to establish a domestic partnership registry.  Read more in our Winter 2008 Equality Newsletter

To register, click here for the Domestic Partner Registry form, fill it out, have it notarized, and take or mail it with $25.00 to the Clerk of Council's office at:
One Government Center, Suite 2120
Toledo, OH  43604
Office open: Weekdays 8:00am - 4:45pm 


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HRC'S EQUALITY INDEXES 2012


Corporate Equality Index
Healthcare Equality Index