LGBTQ Community Rallies To Help Those In South Florida Impacted By COVID-19

Apr 22, 2020

Kendra Hayes, a trans woman of color, had just started to get her life together. Recently homeless, she finally found a job as a prep cook at a Fort Lauderdale restaurant, along with a place to live.

Three weeks later, the coronavirus came.

Courtesy YQ Studio LLC

“José” is an award winning film from Guatemala about a young gay man’s struggles to find love in a socially conservative, homophobic society. “José” opens this Friday in South Florida theaters. But its star, Guatemalan actor Enrique Salanic, won't be here for the film's American premiere, as he'd hoped. That's because the U.S. has denied Salanic a visa to enter the country.

Steve Rothaus

Florida has lost one of its leading activists in the LGBTQ community. 

Terry DeCarlo, 57, died Monday night of complications from stage 4 neck and face cancer. He lived in Wilton Manors with his husband, Bill Huelsman.

Together with DeCarlo for 22 years, Huelsman posted Tuesday on Facebook: 

"It is with the heaviest of hearts that I have to post this. But I need to let everyone know that I lost the love of my life last night," Huelsman wrote. "The cancer was just too aggressive for treatment."

Sun Sentinel

LGBTQ advocates rallied Monday at the Florida Capitol against a proposed ban on medical treatments for transgender children, calling the push misguided and harmful.

State Rep. Shevrin Jones, a Broward County Democrat, took aim at legislation introduced by two of Florida’s most conservative state legislators.

The bills would make it a felony offense for doctors to treat children with hormones and sex reassignment surgery.

For years, YouTube has faced flak from its critics over the video platform's anti-harassment policies. Now, the Google-owned company announced Wednesday it will take a tougher stance on content negatively targeting people based on their race, gender expression or sexual orientation.

Videos and comments with a threatening or intimidating message will be removed under the new guidelines. The policy will apply to everyone, "from private individuals, to YouTube creators, to public officials."

There are plenty of flashpoints for controversy littered among the grand pantheon of four-letter words. Plenty of examples probably come to mind immediately — from the relatively tame ("heck," anyone?) to the kind of graphic profanity that may warrant an uncomfortable call from our ombudsman.

Still, one four-letter word has elicited more heated debate than most among grammarians lately. And it happens to be one that we're free to print right here: they.

DANIEL A. VARELA / Miami Herald

A transgender woman gunned down in South Dade. Another burned to death in Clewiston. A third gender non-conforming person bound, beaten and dragged naked by car down the streets of Jacksonville.

Kim Mas / Vox

More than 60 years ago, a committee was formed in the Florida legislature with the purpose of identifying and removing LGBTQ students and professors on Florida college campuses.

Over the course of a decade, investigators with the Johns Committee - so named because former Florida state lawmaker and governor Charley Johns led it- stalked and interrogated hundreds of suspected gay individuals, leading to the firing or expulsion of at least 200 people from their schools.  

Matt Burke

The short film “The Summer House” begins with a cozy domestic scene. A young couple in love -- Greg and Chris -- are settling in at the cottage once owned by Greg’s father.

But within minutes, things get scary, with the spirit of Greg’s homophobic father stalking his son around the small house.

Or is it?

Transcending Love
Caitie Switalski / WLRN

A new photography exhibit at the Stonewall National Museum & Archives in Wilton Manors aims to give transgender and non-binary couples a platform to tell their stories and show them living their everyday lives, posing with their families in the setting of their choice. 

The exhibit is called "Transcending Love: Portraits of Transgender and Non-Binary Couples." 

Barbara Proud is the photographer behind the project. A lesbian herself, she goes by the name B. Proud.

"...Because, why not?" she said. 


University of Florida

More than 30 percent of undergraduate women at the University of Florida have experienced nonconsensual sexual contact since enrolling at the school, a new survey found.


Despite a ban in 22 Florida communities, conversion therapy is a widespread practice in Florida, according to activists. 

LGBTQ community Wilton Manors
Caitie Switalski / WLRN

The event might have been on the other side of the country, but the crowd gathered in Wilton Manors to watch the nine Democratic presidential candidates discuss their stances on lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer issues Thursday night, still showed up wanting to be impressed.

Human Rights First


When lawyers were asking the Supreme Court this week to extend federal anti-discrimination protection to the LGBTQ community, I wish someone would have brought up Jamaica.

Long a homophobia hotbed, the Caribbean island was starting to look more LGBTQ tolerant in recent years. But last month Jamaica, or at least the beach resort city of Montego Bay, reminded us that homosexuality is still a crime in that country.

The retirement of Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy loomed large over arguments at the court Tuesday in a set of cases testing whether employers are free to fire gay and transgender employees. Kennedy, a Reagan appointee, was the author of every major gay rights decision for more than two decades. His absence, and the presence of two new Trump appointees, could very well determine how these cases are decided, who wins, and who loses.