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NEWS
June 15, 2015 | By Robert Calandra, For The Inquirer
Before the Affordable Care Act, it wasn't unusual for people in the LGBT community to be locked out of health insurance. Insurers could legally deny coverage based on a person's sexual orientation, gender identity, or pre-existing health condition. "It was everything from trans men and women being denied health coverage because their health history was confusing to a hospital or an insurance company, to young LGBT people not being able to afford coverage," said Brian Sims, a Pennsylvania state representative, lawyer, and LGBT civil rights activist.
NEWS
March 15, 2015 | By Julia Terruso, Inquirer Staff Writer
At an iconic Center City gay bar, mayoral candidate James F. Kenney greeted some of the leading LGBT advocates in the city, calling them his family and pledging to continue to protect their rights, in life and love, at a fund-raiser for his campaign. A drag queen manned the DJ station at Woody's, rainbow flags flew, and a slide show of Kenney through the years played on the TVs. Twenty years ago, such a campaign event likely would not have happened. Today, LGBT voters are seen as a key bloc of politically minded, progressive supporters who are expected to turn out - particularly this year, when two openly gay candidates are running for City Council.
NEWS
April 6, 2015 | By Helen Ubinas, Daily News Columnist
GEORGE WAS the first openly gay man I knew. But over the years, I often wondered if the George I knew as a kid was the same man others did, the ones at the other end of a morning cab ride he'd take from my aunt's neighborhood in the Bronx to his job - in banking, I think - somewhere in Manhattan. I'd watch him as he got into the cab, always in a suit, serious and reserved as he folded his huge frame into the back seat and told the driver where to go. At the end of the workday, another cab would drop him off and I'd watch again as he'd disappear into his apartment only to emerge shortly after in the outfit he favored in the summer: jean shorts, a colorful tank top, and chancletas - sandals that punctuated every step as he made his way to my aunt's apartment.
BUSINESS
September 7, 2015
Stephen Betts noticed the mailers and commercials aimed at the gay community becoming more frequent, especially in the last year. "Definitely, I'm seeing more targeted advertising for gay and lesbian couples in bigger company ads," said the Center City resident, who works for a law firm. "It feels like they are going after different family types. " With good reason. In June, the U.S. Supreme Court recognized the legality of same-sex marriages. Gays and lesbians have evolved into a formidable financial bloc and are wielding their purchasing power with renewed gusto, experts say. Their spending clout is estimated at $884 billion.
NEWS
April 3, 2014 | By Robert Moran, Inquirer Staff Writer
District Attorney Seth Williams on Tuesday led the first of a series of forums to improve relations between law enforcement and the lesbian and gay community in Philadelphia. The focus of the forum, held at the District Attorney's Office, was safety and crime prevention, but it reflected a trend in law enforcement to better serve and be sensitive to the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) community. The Police Department recently established a policy to be more respectful to people who are transgendered.
NEWS
October 3, 2014
I MAKE NO secret of the fact that I'm (an imperfect) Catholic. That makes for interesting conversations with strangers who know me only by what I've written, particularly former Catholics who still can't believe I go to Mass. So many of them wonder why I don't speak out against the horrible scourge of child abuse that became one of the preferred media obsessions over the past decade and a half. I understand why they ask, because to people whose only knowledge of the church was gleaned from the Baltimore Catechism back in the 1960s - before they abandoned the pews (and the Colts abandoned Baltimore)
NEWS
April 16, 2012 | By Melissa Dribben, Inquirer Staff Writer
Mark Segal had been biting his nails, waiting for the call. Thursday morning, he was drinking a mug of sweet vanilla coffee in his den above the offices of the Philadelphia Gay News when the phone finally rang. His dream project, an affordable housing complex welcoming to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender seniors, had won a competitive bid for an $11 million state tax credit. "I've been trying not to cry," Segal said Sunday, barely succeeding in holding back the kvell . For more than three years, the 61-year-old founder and publisher of PGN has been planning, lobbying, negotiating, collaborating, and cajoling every social-service agency, activist group, and political leader he knows to make Philadelphia one of the first cities in the nation to meet the needs of the aging LGBT community.
NEWS
February 2, 2012 | By Joseph A. Slobodzian, Inquirer Staff Writer
With Center City's "Gayborhood" and such community institutions as the Giovanni's Room bookstore, Philadelphia Gay News and the Equality Forum that annually draws tens of thousands to issue-events affecting sexual minorities, some might feel crimes based on sexual orientation are part of the past. Helen "Nellie" Fitzpatrick says otherwise. "It hasn't been my whole lifetime that it's been OK to be gay," said Fitzpatrick, 31, a prosecutor in the Philadelphia District Attorney's Office named last month as liaison to the city's LGBT - lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender - community.
NEWS
February 19, 2016 | By Robert Moran, STAFF WRITER
A lawyer for Kathryn Knott on Wednesday asked a judge to reconsider the Bucks County woman's jail sentence for a 2014 attack on a gay couple in Center City that drew national attention. As an alternative to being locked up, attorney William Brennan suggested that 25-year-old Knott could perform a public-service announcement "where she could take the infamy of the arrest and maybe heal some wounds. " Knott was sentenced Feb. 8 to five to 10 months in county prison by Common Pleas Court Judge Roxanne Covington after being convicted by a jury in December on four misdemeanor counts but acquitted of felony aggravated assault.
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ARTICLES BY DATE
NEWS
April 23, 2016 | By Tricia L. Nadolny, Staff Writer
Mayor Kenney has banned nonessential business travel by city employees to North Carolina and Mississippi after the states enacted controversial laws that critics say discriminate against LGBT people. "They're going to learn as a state that the powers of good and decency are well overpowering those of discrimination and hate," Kenney said Thursday. "And they're going to lose a lot of money as a result of making this stupid decision. " The mayor notified employees of the change in an email Wednesday, according to his spokeswoman, Lauren Hitt.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 12, 2016
DEAR ABBY: I have a friend, "Ed," who dated a woman who put him down regularly. He was often depressed, and we would discuss what was wrong. Eventually I told him I didn't think she was good for him and he should end it. Instead, he became reluctant to tell me if anything was wrong. When they got engaged, everyone was shocked. Ed explained it by saying they had been dating for several years so an engagement seemed "logical. " Although many of his friends thought he was making a mistake, we offered our congratulations and support.
NEWS
March 16, 2016 | By Kevin Riordan, Columnist
When Cape May County's LGBT organization was asked to sponsor a needleworking group, Craig van Baal was reluctant. "He said it might perpetuate a stereotype - a bunch of queens sitting around knitting," recalls fiber artist Francesca Geores. But she persisted, and van Baal, vice president of GABLES, came to realize that knitting for charity was an endeavor that could attract all sorts of people. "I went back to our mantra," he says. "We are the gay group doing good things for the entire community.
NEWS
March 8, 2016
ISSUE | CAMPAIGN 2016 Lincoln a Democrat? Signe Wilkinson's editorial cartoon depicted Abraham Lincoln dangling Donald Trump distastefully at arm's length (Wednesday). The Republican Party hasn't been the party of Lincoln for a long time. Republicans still use him as their claim to fame; however, if Lincoln were alive today, he would surely be a Democrat. He would want a higher minimum wage; health care for everyone; protections for the planet; respect for all people, including the LGBT community; and equal opportunity for all. Sherry Milke, Harleysville
NEWS
February 22, 2016 | By Bonnie L. Cook, Staff Writer
Edwin "Ed" Bomba, 61, of Philadelphia, an advocate for the disabled, people with AIDS, and those with alternative lifestyles - especially as they aged - died of complications from surgery Wednesday, Feb. 17, at Pennsylvania Hospital. Mr. Bomba was "there from the very get-go" for those fighting AIDS, said longtime friend Heshie Zinman. Diagnosed with HIV in the 1980s, Mr. Bomba had hearing loss and was partially blind. He used a cane to get around and in the last year was aided by a service dog named Cooper.
NEWS
February 19, 2016 | By Robert Moran, STAFF WRITER
A lawyer for Kathryn Knott on Wednesday asked a judge to reconsider the Bucks County woman's jail sentence for a 2014 attack on a gay couple in Center City that drew national attention. As an alternative to being locked up, attorney William Brennan suggested that 25-year-old Knott could perform a public-service announcement "where she could take the infamy of the arrest and maybe heal some wounds. " Knott was sentenced Feb. 8 to five to 10 months in county prison by Common Pleas Court Judge Roxanne Covington after being convicted by a jury in December on four misdemeanor counts but acquitted of felony aggravated assault.
NEWS
January 4, 2016 | By Rob Tornoe, Staff Writer
A Mummers brigade that itself stirred criticism for a New Year's Day act that made fun of transgender celebrity Caitlyn Jenner apologized Saturday for one of its members, who was caught on video yelling a profane slur about homosexuals. "I find myself, as do many many members of Finnegan NYB, wholeheartedly apologizing for the abrasive, gross, and disturbing action of one of our members who, unfortunately, took it upon himself to embarrass us all with his conduct," Finnegan NYB captain Michael J. Inemer Sr. told Philly.com in an email.
NEWS
November 5, 2015 | By Tricia L. Nadolny, Inquirer Staff Writer
Philadelphia voters approved two changes to the City Charter on Tuesday, making a permanent city post to advocate for LGBT issues, and reorganizing the departments that handle planning and development. The Mayor's Office of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Affairs has been a temporary city office since Mayor Nutter created it by executive order in 2008. The ballot question, introduced as legislation by City Councilwoman Blondell Reynolds Brown, will make that office permanent. "Like the voters' decision last spring to make the Office of Sustainability a permanent part of our government, I am excited that voters today have decided to make permanent the Office of LGBT Affairs," Nutter said in a statement.
NEWS
October 28, 2015 | By Tricia L. Nadolny, Inquirer Staff Writer
Two changes to the city's Home Rule Charter approved this year by City Council and Mayor Nutter will be put before Philadelphia voters on Tuesday. One would make the mayor's Office of LGBT Affairs a permanent fixture; the other would create a cabinet-level Department of Planning and Development to oversee functions now handled by a host of bodies. Voters will also be asked whether the city should borrow $155.9 million to cover capital expenses. LGBT Affairs. The Mayor's Office of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Affairs, created by a Nutter executive order in 2008, would become a permanent city office if this ballot question passes.
NEWS
October 23, 2015 | By Helen Ubinas, Daily News Columnist
RUTH WOODS is always polite, but increasingly I've picked up a tinge of dread in her voice when I call. Hi, Ruth. Hiii , Helen. Woods knows why I'm calling. It's the same reason I've called on and off for two years: Diamond Williams, the transgender woman she insists on referring to as her grandson, Mark Woods. By many accounts Williams did not have an easy life. By all accounts, her last few hours on Earth were hell. Williams, 31, was killed in July 2013 by a john who used a hatchet and screwdriver to dismember her and then dumped her remains in a vacant lot in North Philadelphia.
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