Here's what you need to know this week for lesbian, bisexual, and trans news!
Lesbian — New Jersey Proposal Expands Infertility Coverage to Lesbians
(AP) A federal lawsuit brought by a New Jersey lesbian couple who want to have a baby may mean insurance coverage for women who currently don't meet the state's definition of infertile.
Erin Krupa was denied insurance coverage for infertility treatments essentially because she failed to show she couldn't get pregnant by having sex with a man. New Jersey law for insurance purposes defines infertility as the result of failure to conceive after a certain period of unprotected sex.
Krupa's insurer eventually agreed to the coverage, based on her doctor's diagnosis, and she has incurred nearly $25,000 in out-of-pocket medical expenses.
But she and Marianne Krupa say in their lawsuit that they are pursuing the case as a civil rights issue, “the right of all New Jersey women who dream of becoming mothers to access the reproductive health care they need to realize that dream on an equal basis.''
Meanwhile, some state lawmakers plan to advance legislation to change the law when legislators return from break in September. The proposal would revise the definition of infertility to include lesbians, women without partners and those who have protected sex.
"The law needs to be changed,'' said Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg, a Democrat and the bill's sponsor in the Senate. "It's just time to push this to the forefront.''
Bisexual — LGBT High School Students Raped, Attacked More Often
(EDGE) Gay, lesbian and bisexual high school students are far more likely than their classmates to be raped or assaulted in a dating situation, according to the first national survey of its kind.
The research also found gay teens were far more likely to have attempted suicide, taken illegal drugs and engaged in other risky behaviors.
The finding echoes results of smaller surveys and findings from advocacy groups, but it is the first nationally-representative government survey to look at the issues.
For years, advocacy groups have been saying gay and lesbian kids are more often bullied, ostracized and at high risk for many other problems. But earlier research by the government was limited to a small number of states and cities. The new survey includes students in rural areas and other parts of the U.S.
"This is the first time we can say that nationwide these are consistent challenges faced by lesbian, gay and bi- youth," said David W. Bond of The Trevor Project, a national suicide-prevention organization focused on gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender youth.
Shontay Richardson says the survey reflects her experience in high school. "There's of course the physical bullying, but also the emotional bullying that takes place," she said.
Transgender — Texas Court Says Transgender Man Has No Right to Change Gender on ID
A post-operative transgender person who is seen as a man and consistently considered male apparently does not have enough evidence to legally change his gender identification in the state of Texas, according to LGBTQ Nation. He elected to have his name withheld.
An appeals court last week decided that he was not entitled to change his driver’s license to reflect his correct gender. Judge Martha Hill Jamison wrote that even if Texas law provided for gender change orders, the petitioner “did not present any evidence in the trial supporting the proposition that [his] current gender designation is inaccurate.”
“I’ve paid like $2,000 to still have a big fat ‘F’ on my driver’s license, despite being seen completely as a completely as a man as well as being post-operative,” the petitioner told the Texas Observer. “it’s honestly jarring and heartbreaking.”