North Dakota Newspaper Changes Announcements Policy After GLAAD Reaches Out

Last week we shared with you the story of Kelsey Smith Allison Johnson, two lesbian women who were trying place their engagement announcement in a local North Dakota newspaper The Forum. However, after submitting their photo, announcement text and the $25 publication fee, the paper rejected their engagement announcement saying "…but at this time The Forum does not print engagements/wedding announcements for same sex couples”

Immediately, GLAAD called the editors of the local newspaper to emphasize that discriminating against people simply because they are gay is not only wrong, it alienates the countless LGBT and ally readers who look to the The Forum for coverage that is fair, accurate and includes the images and stories of their friends, neighbors and family members who happen to be LGBT.

On Sunday, after a series of calls from GLAAD and several emails and tweets from constituents, including HRC, The Forum announced it has changed its policy and has agreed to run announcements

This decision is not only the right thing to do it makes the most business sense.

For more than 25 years GLAAD has worked to make newspapers and the media more inclusive of LGBT stories. In 2002, GLAAD launched the Announcing Equality campaign, after working with The New York Times to open its weddings/celebrations pages to lesbian and gay couples. The campaign specifically targets papers that excluded same-sex couples from their wedding and engagements sections.

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GLAAD Southern Stories will elevate the experiences of LGBT people in six of the nation's southern states. The initiative amplifies stories of LGBT people thriving in the South, ongoing discrimination, as well as the everyday indignities endured by LGBT people who simply wish to live the lives they love, including stories of family, stories of faith, stories of sports, and stories of patriotism