Here's the latest in lesbian, bisexual and transgender news!
Alabama Church Elects Lesbian Pastor
(SFGN) The Rev. Jennifer Sanders is the newly elected pastor of Beloved Community Church, an affiliate of the United Church of Christ, in Avondale Alabama in Birmingham.
“I’m a woman, a lesbian, a member of a progressive faith tradition,” Sanders told AL.com.
Beloved Church was founded in 2000, and had 120 members, AL.com reports.
"Beloved was founded as an interracial church, open and affirming justice for the LGBTQ community, for people with disabilities, from different faith backgrounds," she said. "There's a genuine commitment to diversity and appreciation and engagement."
Regarding gay rights activism Sanders said,
“It’s part of who I am, but it’s not the whole of what we do,” Sanders said. “My commitment to racial justice, to people with disabilities, my commitment to economic justice and environmental justice, are part of that, just as much a part of my commitment to rights for LGBTQ people.”
Sanders has a bachelor’s degree in history and political science from Rice University, and a master’s degree in occupational therapy from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. She has more than 15 years’ experience as an occupational therapist at homes and hospitals in the area, according to AL.com.
She is working on a master of divinity degree from Chicago Theological Seminary.
“Grey’s Anatomy’s” Sara Ramirez come out as Bi
(SFGN) During an appearance at the True Color Fund’s 40 to None Summit, actress Sara Ramirez spoke on some of the issues facing LGBT youth, and identified herself as queer and bisexual, the Huffington Post reports (http://huff.to/2dONNeA). The True Colors Fund is a New York based advocacy group for homeless LGBT Youth, co-founded by Cyndi Lauper.
“So many of our youth experiencing homelessness are youth whose lives touch on many intersections – whether they be gender identity, gender expression, race, class, sexual orientation, religion, citizenship status,” Ramirez said.
“Because of the intersections that exist in my own life: woman, multi-racial woman, woman of color, queer, bisexual, Mexican-Irish American, immigrant, and raised by families heavily rooted in Catholicism on both my Mexican and Irish sides, I am deeply invested in projects that allow our youth’s voices to be heard.”
Ramirez has appeared in Spanish PSAs for GLAAD. Her “Grey’s Anatomy” character, Dr. Callie Torres married fellow Dr. Arizona Robbins, played by Jessica Capshaw, in 2011.
“It made sense for me at this time as it was one piece of a larger context I was communicating,” she told HuffPost about her speech. “Our most marginalized youth touch on many intersections, and in describing the concept of inter sectionalities, I decided to describe the ones that exist in my own life.”
US Supreme Court Delays Hearing Transgender School Board Case
(SFGN) The U.S. Supreme Court is still deciding whether or not it will hear the case of transgender Virginia high school student Gavin Grimm vs. the Gloucester County School Board, the Daily Press reports.
The school board filed a petition in August asking the Supreme court to decide whether refusing Grimm access to the boys’ restroom is a violation of federal law.
Grimm, represented by the American Civil Liberties Union, sued the school board last year over a policy that requires students to use the restroom of their physical sex, or private unisex restrooms.
The ACLU argues the school policy violates Title IX a federal law prohibiting sex discrimination in schools, requiring the school board to provide equal restrooms for male and female students separated on the basis of sex.
The school argues that gender identity is not a protected status.
"The term 'gender identity' is nowhere in Title IX," the school division’s petition reads. "If 'sex' signifies, not biology, but rather one's 'internal' sense of maleness or femaleness, the whole concept of permissible sex-separation collapses."
A federal judge ruled in June that Grimm could use the boys’ facilities at Gloucester High School, but the school board requested a block on the order until the case could be appealed in high court. If the case is rejected, the federal order will be back in place, meaning Grimm will be allowed to use the restroom while the case is heard in federal court.