LGBTQ Rights

C.M. GUERRERO / Miami Herald

On this Monday, Feb. 10, episode of Sundial:

Update on education policies in the 2020 legislature 

Florida business leaders have joined the fight to increase teacher pay. 

Fifth Third Bank/AP

State Representative Carlos Guillermo Smith of Orlando is working to change Florida’s private school voucher program ‘Step Up for Students’ because he says it violates state law. Smith says Floridians have a constitutional right not to face discrimination regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identification.

The United Methodist Church announced a proposal Friday to split the denomination over what it called "fundamental differences" regarding its beliefs on same-sex marriage and LGBTQ clergy.

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.  

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.

Jessica Bakeman / WLRN

Tony Varona immigrated to the United States from Cuba as a small child. Growing up in Newark, New Jersey, he was the only person in his family who spoke English.

“I was called upon to be the family translator and to be the family representative. Whenever anybody needed to go to the immigration office or the Social Security office, I went with them,” he said. “That experience taught me about advocacy.”

Varona also navigated what he called the 'challenging task' of coming out as gay as a working-class Cuban immigrant in Newark.

Stonewall National Museum & Archives
Diana Davies/The New York Public Library / WLRN

Friday marks 50 years since LGBTQ activists rioted at the Stonewall Inn in New York. The famous protests accelerated the movement to secure rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer Americans.

Could Florida Become A 'Beacon Of Hope' For The LGBTQ Community?

Jun 16, 2019
Matthew Peddie, WMFE

Three years after the deadliest act of violence against LGBTQ people in the history of the country, at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, activists across the state are encouraged by what they say are positive steps forward for Florida’s LGBTQ community. 

In spite of significant challenges, including from conservative lawmakers who hold the majority of seats in the statehouse, a federal memorial is in the works at the site of the shooting in Orlando. And this week, Florida’s Republican Governor Ron DeSantis voiced his support for the gay community. 

Fifteen years ago, David Wilson and his husband Rob Compton were one of the first same-sex couples to marry in the U.S.

If it had been up to Wilson and Compton, their union would've been recognized years before that. Frustrated by the injustice, both men became plaintiffs in a lawsuit that led to Massachusetts becoming the first state to legalize same-sex marriage on May 17, 2004.

They married in Boston at City Hall and at their church that same day.

In Austin, Texas, a new raft of anti-LGBT legislation is working its way through the state legislature. One of the bills would allow state licensed professionals of all stripes — from doctors and pharmacists to plumbers and electricians — to deny services on religious grounds. Supporters say the legislation is needed to protect religious freedoms. But opponents call them "religious refusal bills" or "bigot bills."

Peter Nunn is 32 and he's happy. He lives just outside Atlanta with his husband Monte, his dog Amelie, and their cat Hollow.

The dining room is decorated with a photo gallery wall of family — his husband dancing with his mother at their wedding and pictures of the couple. But it took a long time and work to get to a place where Nunn said he accepted and loved himself.

As a gay man, Nunn said, his father tried to change him.

History of Miami

In recognition of the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, a new exhibition chronicles the history of Miami-Dade County’s LGBTQ community over the past 120 years. 

Governor Ron DeSantis did not include LGBTQ employees in an executive order that setup workplace discrimination policies in government offices this week. Without these protections, people can be hired or fired solely based on their gender identity or sexual orientation.

If you just happened to be in the crowd at a super featherweight bout in Indio, Calif., on Saturday evening, you might not understand the importance of that particular boxing match.

But for Patricio Manuel, it represented 12 minutes of triumph. With that fight, Manuel, 33, became the first openly trans man to compete in a professional boxing match in the U.S.

A group of lawmakers and advocates held a Transgender Day of Remembrance at the Capitol Tuesday to honor those killed by anti-trans violence. Democratic State Representative Carlos Guillermo Smith says Florida lawmakers can do more to protect transgender Floridians. First and foremost, Smith says, the Legislature can pass the Florida Competitive Workforce Act.

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