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Blogs by Justin Ward, Senior Media Field Strategist at GLAAD

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Bi-National Gay Couple Fighting to Stay Together on Valentine's Day

On Valentine's Day 2011, Anton Tanumihardja was en route to the airport to be deported to Indonesia when he received a last minute, temporary stay of deportation. Following a year filled with lots of ups and downs, Valentine's Day 2012 finds Anton waiting to learn the status of his "green card" application. In this blog post, we follow-up with Anton and his husband, Brian, one year after we first introduced you to the couple and their unimaginable, yet inspiring love story.

Ask This Ark. Newspaper to Print Gay Couple's Engagement Announcement

The Northwest Arkansas Times refuses to print the engagement announcement of a gay couple, citing state law which does not legally recognize the marriages of loving and committed gay and lesbian couples. In similar situations, other newspapers have opted to stand in favor of inclusivity and against discrimination. A new Change.org petition encourages the Northwest Arkansas Times to join the ranks of those newspapers that practice inclusivity in spite of state laws that aren't quite there yet.

Story to Watch: VA Board of Juvenile Justice Upholds Protections for LGBT Youth

On Tuesday, the Virginia Board of Juvenile Justice voted 5-1 to continue including specific language which prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation in rules governing residential facilities. This marks the third time in a year and a half that the Board has reaffirmed protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) youth, protections that have been in existence since 2005.

Story to Watch: VA Board Allows Adoption Agencies to Discriminate Based on Sexual Orientation, Other Factors

Contrary to the will of the majority of Virginians, state-licensed adoption agencies will soon be able to legally discriminate against prospective adoptive and foster parents on the basis of sexual orientation, age, gender, disability, religion, political belief and family status. Meanwhile, nearly 6,000 Virginia children live in foster care.

Historic Day in Mass: Gov. Patrick Signs Transgender Equal Rights Bill

After passing in both houses of the Massachusetts Legislature last week, today Gov. Deval Patrick (D) signed the historic Transgender Equal Rights Bill. The law will take effect on July 1, 2012, at which time the state's approximately 33,000 transgender residents will have vital protections against discrimination in employment, housing, education, credit and hate crimes law.

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