This week read about Colorado Gov. Jared Polis getting married, and a Virginia school board approving a policy protecting transgender and non-binary students.
First Publicly Gay Governor Gets Married
When Gov. Jared Polis of Colorado was elected in 2018, he became the first openly gay U.S. governor. On Sept. 15, Polis married his partner of 18 years, Marlon Reis. This is the first time a sitting governor has had a same-sex marriage.
It was a small traditional Jewish ceremony attended only by close friends and family of the couple, the New York Times reported. The governor’s office said all attendees were required to have a negative COVID-19 test.
“After 18 years together, we couldn’t be happier to be married at last,” Polis said on Twitter.
Reis is a writer and animal rights activist, and together the couple has two children aged 7 and 9.
Polis proposed to Reis in December while they both were sick with COVID-19. They had chosen their wedding date because it was the 18th anniversary of their first date.
Virginia Beach School Board Approves Trans Policy
Photo via Adobe Stock.
During the 2020 session, the Virginia General Assembly passed a statewide set of guidelines made to protect transgender and non-binary students. Districts were told to adopt the model before the beginning of the 2021-2022 school year.
The state’s largest school district, Virginia Beach, began the school year without adopting the new guidelines. On Sept. 14, the district’s school board belatedly voted to approve the policies.
It was approved on a 7-3 vote, according to the Virginia Pilot, with Jennifer Franklin, Laura Hughes and Vicky Manning in opposition.
The guidelines set by the General Assembly allow students to use the restrooms or locker rooms that correspond with their gender identity and allow students to choose their names and pronouns, Wavy Station 10 reported. The policies also allow students to participate in gender-specific activities and programs, like overnight field trips and sports, that correspond with their gender identity.
“School divisions should accept a student’s assertion of their gender identity without requiring any particular substantiating evidence, including diagnosis, treatment, or legal documents,” the General Assembly’s model policy states.
Before the Virginia Beach meeting began, about 100 people gathered in rally and prayer. Public comment during the meeting focused mainly on bathroom use and whether a parent can override their student if they disagree on gender identity.
“It would be very wrong if they said you have to call that person fat because they see themselves as fat,” pastor Richard Alan Pickens said.