Civil Rights

Activists Cry Foul In Michigan LGBT Rights Ballot Drive

The Associated Press reports: The Michigan elections bureau has determined that organizers of a ballot drive to prohibit discrimination against LGBTQ people failed to collect enough valid voter signatures. Fair and Equal Michigan gathered nearly 299,000 signatures, short of the roughly 340,000 needed, according to a report released Thursday. “The Bureau of Elections threw out thousands of signatures that are …

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Win For Trans Students As SCOTUS Rejects Appeal

Richmond’s NBC News affiliate reports: A Virginia school board is asking the court to uphold a policy, struck down by lower courts, that prohibits transgender students from using school bathrooms that correspond with their gender identity. The case has been around for six years, since then-high school student Gavin Grimm filed a federal lawsuit over the Gloucester County board’s refusal …

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Turkish Police Fire Tear Gas And Rubber Bullets To Stop “Immoral” Istanbul Pride March, 25 Arrested [VIDEO]

Deutsche Welle reports: Riot police in Istanbul fired tear gas and blocked streets during a march in support of LGBT+ rights, detaining 25 people including prominent AFP photographer Bulent Kilic. The march participants comprised several civil society groups that gathered under the motto “the street is ours.” Footage and photos of demonstrators showed some being pushed and dragged by riot …

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LGBTQ History: “The Foot Wore A Spiked Heel”

It was 52 years ago this weekend that the queer community of New York City finally said “Enough!” As I’ve done for the last few years on this day, I’m reposting the story that the New York Daily News ran one week after the Stonewall Riots. Note how the story drips with condescension and ridicule. We’ve come a long, long …

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States Scramble To Shut Offices For Juneteenth Holiday

CNN reports: States across the country are scrambling to close their government offices Friday after President Joe Biden signed legislation establishing Juneteenth as a US federal holiday. While June 19 — which commemorates the end of slavery in the United States — falls on a Saturday this year, governors across the country announced in quick succession a range of plans …

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Hungarian Parliament Approves New Anti-LGBT Bill

The Associated Press reports: Lawmakers in Hungary approved legislation Tuesday that prohibits sharing with minors any content portraying homosexuality or sex reassignment, something supporters said would help fight pedophilia but which human rights groups denounced as anti-LGBT discrimination. Fidesz, the conservative ruling party of Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, introduced the legislation, which is the latest effort to curtail the …

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Texas Dems Stage Midnight Walkout In Attempt To Stop Voter Suppression Bill, Governor Vows Special Session

The Texas Tribune reports: The sweeping overhaul of Texas elections and voter access was poised from the beginning of the session to pass into law. It had the backing of Republican leaders in both chambers of the Legislature. It had support from the governor. Democrats who opposed the bill, chiding it as a naked attempt of voter suppression, were simply …

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Namibia To Consider Legalizing Homosexuality

Reuters reports: Namibia could soon scrap a colonial-era law that criminalises gay sex between men, the justice minister said on Friday, calling the legislation “outdated and discriminatory”. The law is rarely enforced in the Southern African country and is among several dozen laws that the government will consider abolishing following recommendations by a reform commission. “The LGBTQI community are human …

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Texas Poised To Approve Sprawling Voting Restrictions

The New York Times reports: Texas lawmakers on Saturday finished drafting a bill that would impose a raft of new voting restrictions, setting up the likely passage of what would be among the most far-reaching laws in Republicans’ nationwide drive to overhaul elections systems and limit voting. The bill would tighten what are already some of the country’s strictest voting …

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Texas Bill Would Cut Polling Places In Urban Areas

The Texas Tribune reports: The number of Election Day polling places in largely Democratic parts of major Texas counties would fall dramatically under a Republican proposal to change how Texas polling sites are distributed, a Texas Tribune analysis shows. Voting options would be curtailed most in areas with higher shares of voters of color. Relocating polling sites is part of …

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Native Americans Group Sues MT Over Voting Rights

The New York Times reports: The American Civil Liberties Union and the Native American Rights Fund filed a lawsuit on Monday challenging two new election laws in Montana as unconstitutional infringements on Native Americans’ right to vote. Montana legislators enacted the laws — H.B. 176, which eliminated same-day voter registration, and H.B. 530, which restricted ballot collection — this spring, …

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TODAY: Senate Begins Battle On Voting Rights Bill

CBS News reports: The Senate Rules Committee will consider amendments on Tuesday to S.1, the For the People Act, a massive voting and elections bill that Democrats claim is necessary to counter new voting restrictions being considered by multiple states. Committee Chair Amy Klobuchar announced last month that the committee would hold a “markup” session on the bill on May …

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Grand Jury Indicts Derek Chauvin, Three Other Ex-Cops On Civil Rights Charges Over Murder Of George Floyd

The Associated Press reports: A federal grand jury has indicted the four former Minneapolis police officers involved in George Floyd’s arrest and death, accusing them of violating the Black man’s constitutional rights as he was restrained face-down on the pavement and gasping for air, according to indictments unsealed Friday. The three-count indictment names Derek Chauvin, Thomas Lane, J. Kueng and …

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Scottsdale Becomes 8th AZ City With LGBTQ Protections

The Associated Press reports: The city of Scottsdale has voted to approve a non-discrimination ordinance, becoming the eighth city in Arizona to provide protections to members of the LGBTQ community and other groups. The Scottsdale City Council unanimously passed the ordinance on Tuesday protecting residents from discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity in employment, public places and housing. …

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Florida Anti-Trans Bill Stalls In GOP-Led State Senate

Tallahassee’s CBS News affiliate reports: A proposal that would make it more difficult for transgender athletes to compete on girls’ and women’s high-school and college teams stalled Tuesday in a state Senate panel. With the 2021 legislative session scheduled to end April 30, Senate Appropriations Chairwoman Kelli Stargel, who is sponsoring the Senate’s version of the transgender athlete bill, said …

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POLL: Two-Thirds Of Americans Oppose Anti-Trans Bills

PBS reports: The rights of transgender Americans has been a growing topic of debate on sports fields, in state capitols and in Congress. The Human Rights Campaign, an LGBTQ advocacy organization, says more than 30 state legislatures have proposed more than 115 bills that would limit transgender rights, from participation on sports teams to access to medical care. But two-thirds …

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HUD To Reinstate Fair Housing Rules Gutted By Trump

The Washington Post reports: Housing Secretary Marcia L. Fudge on Tuesday moved to reinstate fair housing regulations that had been gutted under President Donald Trump, in one of the most tangible steps that the Biden administration has taken to address systemic racism. The effort comes less than three months after Biden signed executive orders aimed at increasing racial equity across …

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Civil Rights Groups Sue GA Over Voter Suppression Law

Via press release from the NAACP: Civil rights groups have filed a new federal lawsuit against Georgia’s sweeping law that makes it much harder for all Georgians to vote, particularly voters of color, new citizens, and religious communities. The American Civil Liberties Union, ACLU of Georgia, NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF), Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), and …

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House Votes 222-204 Along Party Lines To Lift 1982 Deadline For States To Ratify Equal Rights Amendment

Axios reports: The House voted 222-204 on Wednesday in another attempt to eliminate a deadline passed in 1982 that has prevented the Equal Rights Amendment from becoming part of the Constitution. The big picture: The decades-long fight over the amendment to afford men and women equal rights has been revived after Virginia claimed last year to be the final state …

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LIVE VIDEO: Senate Judiciary Hearing On Equality Act

The Washington Post reports: In some ways, full LGBTQ rights has never seemed more within reach. First came the Supreme Court’s 2015 decision legalizing same-sex marriage. Then its decision last year banning LGBTQ discrimination in employment. And now, for the first time since those rulings, a Democratic-led Congress and a president who vows to pass sweeping legal protections by April. …

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