Snapshots: Dear Prudence, Trans healthcare, Big Brother Big Sister, and more

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Be sure to check out GLAAD's Blog each week for updates about our latest work to build support for LGBT equality through news, entertainment, and online media.

The organizers of the New York City St. Patrick’s Day Parade have announced that, for the first time in the parade's 253-year history, it will allow an LGBT organization to march under its own banner. Earlier this year, GLAAD urged sponsors to reconsider support of the discriminatory parade, after which Heineken and Guinness ended their sponsorship. Read more here.

GLAAD was among the first outlets to comment on nationally syndicated advice column Dear Prudence's harmful edition, "Private Bi," in which Prudence urged a bisexual woman to stay in the closet. GLAAD's critique of Slate and its column were cited in LGBT outlets, including PinkNews, Autostraddle, and The Advocate. GLAAD is continuously reaching out to Slate editors, urging them to meet with representatives of the bi community to learn best practices for media coverage as well as the harms of identity erasure. Read more here.

When ESPN aired a disrespectful segment about Michael Sam's showering habits, GLAAD was in communication with ESPN to emphasize the harms of stereotypes and the company's responsibility to do better. ESPN later apologized for the segment. Read more here.

Noting that "the LGBT community cannot be silent at this moment," GLAAD joined 16 other LGBT organizations issuing a letter to stand with the family of Michael Brown, the African-American teenager who was fatally shot by the police in Ferguson, Missouri. GLAAD also encouraged its followers into action. Read more here.

GLAAD joined the Trans Women of Color Collective (TWOCC) of Greater New York in a Call to Action on August 18, marking one year since the brutal assault of Islan Nettles. Within 42 days of New York City's Pride celebrations, five transgender women of color – Yaz'min Shancez, Tiffany Edwards, Zoraida Reyes, Mia Henderson, and Kandy Hall – were reported killed. Several transgender advocates and allies have been invited to speak at today's vigil including GLAAD's Senior Strategist, Tiq Milan. Read more here.

Upworthy, the viral content media company, shared GLAAD and SRLP's flowchart explaining why Medicaid programs should provide coverage for transgender-related healthcare. The flowchart was created as part of an ongoing campaign around trans-inclusive healthcare coverage. In their post, Upworthy also included even more specific statistics supporting the information in the flowchart.

GLAAD's director of Spanish-language media Monica Trasandes recently worked with 20 staffers at Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Los Angeles, training them how to harness the power of the media by equipping them with powerful talking points, effective interview techniques, and more. Many of the agency's personnel work with LGBT volunteers and with the Latino community. Helping volunteers, community members and youth become comfortable discussing LGBT issues is an important goal for the agency in Los Angeles. GLAAD is now discussing possibilities for working with the national organization to ensure training guides are updated and include respectful and correct LGBT terminology and messages.

GLAAD's Spanish-language media strategist Janet Quezada recently spoke at a panel at the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, which celebrated its 30thanniversary. Janet was on the panel with Samuel Aguilera, the President of the Orgullo de San Antonio Council #22198 and Joey Palacios from Texas Public Radio and their goal was to educate journalists and journalism students on best practices in covering the LGBT community. While there, Janet also worked with Esperanza Peace and Justice Center and the Orgullo Council to teach best practices local LGBT advocates about discussing LGBT community issues with the media. The Esperanza Peace and Justice Center is a long standing community organizing and performance space run by longtime LGBT advocate Graciela Sanchez and the Orgullo Council is one among a growing number of the League of Latina American Citizen's councils that has organized people at the intersection of Latino and LGBT issues and identities.

GLAAD's Director of News, Ross Murray, wrote commentary about the viral video of a family using their Christian faith to disown and assault their son. Ross wrote that the message this family was taught was not a Christian message, but one that bears "bad fruit." "If we encounter preaching and teaching that this sort of discrimination is acceptable, or even desirable, we have a duty to call it the false teaching that it is. Calling out bad theology isn't anti-Christian. In fact, it may be exactly what Christianity needs to survive and even thrive in this day and age." Read more here.

The Minneapolis Star Tribune highlighted the campers who attended The Naming Project Summer Camp, a groundbreaking summer camp that is a safe haven for Christian youth of all sexual and gender identities run by GLAAD's Director of News, Ross Murray. In the Star Tribune article, many campers expressed what the camp means to them. Farley, a transgender 16 year old, said "It's such a feeling of coming home." Read more here.

GLAAD's Spanish-language media team worked with Guiliani Alvarenga, Los Angeles advocate and member of Latino Equality Alliance, to prepare for him for an appearance on CNN en Español's Realidades en Contexto. The segment touched on the viral video by Daniel Pierce that documents how his family shamed him when he came out. Alvarenga shared his own testimony and urged people to intervene and share resources with youth who need support if their own families react in this manner.

GLAAD's Spanish language media team helped place a powerful op-ed by Mario Itzel Suarez, a trans man from Texas in the San Antonio Express-News. The piece illuminates his experiences in the public education system and the importance of allies in states that do not have protections for LGBT workers. The San Antonio Express-News is one of the largest daily newspapers in Texas. You can read the piece here.

GLAAD's Spanish-language media department helped place an op-ed, in which LGBT advocate Gabriel Garcia-Vera addressed to his late abuelo or grandfather on the Miami Herald website. In it, Garcia-Vera talks about why he fights for LGBT equality, access, and justice. He also shares a picture of himself at a rally that became a meme on social media. You can read the full op-ed here.

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