Whitman Walker Supports the LGBT Older Americans and Older People Living with HIV Act

Whitman Walker Health

Whitman-Walker has issued a statement of support for DC Bill 23-0037, the Care for LGBTQ Seniors and Seniors Living with HIV Amendment Act of 2019.  The legislation would requires the DC Office on Aging & Community Living (DACL) and Commission on Aging to include LGBTQ Seniors and Seniors Living with HIV as group of greatest social need under the Older Americans Act. In addition, the bill would amend the Human Rights Act of 1977 to establish and LGBTQ HIV long-term care bill or rights.

The statement was released in July and states in part: “The Care for LGBTQ Seniors and Seniors with HIV Amendment Act, Bill 23-37, is a major step forward in addressing the unique and compelling needs of these DC residents. We congratulate Councilmembers Cheh, Bonds, Nadeau, Gray, T. White, Allen, McDuffie, Todd, Silverman, and R. White for introducing the bill, and Councilmembers Grosso and Evans for co-sponsoring this important legislation. ”

Read the complete statement from Whitman Walker below:

Whitman Walker Health Statement of Support for 23-0037

Sign the online petition to support this legislation using the link below:

DC Council: Take Action to Support LGBTQ Older Adults and Long Term Survivors of HIV

PrEP Study for Black Men

PrEP Study for Black Men

The Sexuality & Health Equity Lab at the George Washington University is currently recruiting trial participants for a survey study about PrEP advertising that we are conducting with Black men who have sex with men (MSM) in the Washington, DC metro area.

The study involves completing two 20-minute surveys and receiving a weekly email for 8 weeks, for which respondents will earn two $10 Amazon gift cards (one for each survey) and be entered into a lottery to win $500 in cash. To be eligible, participants must be Black, HIV-negative, PrEP-inexperienced men who are sexually active with other men and reside in the DC metro area.

Download the study flyer below.

GW PrEP Study

LGBTQ Community-Researcher Networking Event Summary Report

LGBTQ Community-Researcher Networking Event Summary Report
The George Washington University (GW) Cancer Center recently hosted a networking event to bring together researchers and sexual and gender minority community members. The goal of the event was to improve collaboration between researchers and community members, and to improve the relevance of LGBTQI+ research.
A summary report detailing the event as well as some next steps for building community engaged research is now available from the GW Cancer Center. As a part of the event, the GW Cancer Center also released several new tools to improve collaboration and facilitate community-based conversations around research.
Click the link below to download the report:

Program Coordinator for Rainbow Youth Alliance, Rockville, MD

Rainbow Youth Alliance (RYA), a program of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Rockville, is hiring a licensed clinical program coordinator (social work, counseling). RYA offers community support for LGBTQIA youth and their allies. RYA envisions a future in which LGBTQIA teens have access to safe, nurturing environments where they are respected, listened to, and given information and skills. Their mission is to provide safe places for LGBTQIA teens to ask questions, find mutual support, and learn information pertinent to their lives.
The position is part-time (approximately 5-hrs a week) and includes the clinical direction and facilitation of biweekly support groups as wells as coordinating the RYA volunteers. Applicants must hold a current clinical license in Maryland (LGs okay). For more information, see the job announcement below or go to the RYA Website.

About Rainbow Youth Alliance
Rainbow Youth Alliance (RYA), a program of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Rockville (UUCR), provides community support to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, queer, and questioning teens and their allies – known to us as rainbow teens. RYA envisions a future in which rainbow teens have access to safe, nurturing environments where they are respected, listened to, and given information and skills. Our mission is to provide safe places for rainbow teens to ask questions, find mutual support, and learn information pertinent to their lives.

Job Summary

The Program Coordinator provides clinical direction and support to RYA programming. They facilitate twice-monthly support groups, recruits and manages volunteer facilitators, and plans/oversees social events geared at increasing LGBTQ youth connection and community. The Program Coordinator reports directly to the supervisor designated by (and based at) UUCR. UUCR provides meeting space, other in-kind resources, and leadership for RYA. UUCR does not provide office space, computer support, or secretarial support for RYA.

The Program Coordinator is expected to spend approximately 5 hours/week as an independent contractor. The hourly wage will be determined based on the individual’s training, experience, and expertise. Payment will be provided monthly upon submission of an approved invoice. No benefits or insurance of any kind is included for this position. For licensed mental health applicants, they are expected to carry and show proof of their own malpractice insurance.

Primary Essential Duties

  • Oversee clinical aspects of RYA programming, including support groups, social events, and other areas as need arises
  • Facilitate twice-monthly support groups (1st and 3rd Sundays, 3:45 – 6 PM) for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning youth and their allies ages 13-18
  • Plan and oversee youth social events and activities outside of RYA support meetings
  • Recruit and manage volunteer adult facilitators for RYA programming, including support groups and social functions
  • Develop and conduct volunteer training on topics such as trauma-informed practices, group facilitation skills, crisis response, mandated reporting, confidentiality, LGBTQ youth
  • Manage RYA Program Coordinator email and phone account, including responding to all inquiries within 2 business days
  • Maintain accurate and up-to-date records for all support groups and socials, including youth sign-in sheets
  • Attend bi-monthly RYA Advisory Council and provides Program Coordinator report to include clinical updates and upcoming events
  • Work with RYA Advisory Council to identify areas for performance improvement and professional development
  • Attend external training, workshops, and conferences for professional development and keeps abreast of changes and innovations in the field
  • Other duties as assigned

The above job description is designed to indicate a general sense of the duties and expectations of this position. It is not to be interpreted as a comprehensive inventory of all duties and responsibilities required. As the nature of our business demands change, so too, may the duties and responsibilities of this position. You may be required to perform other duties as requested, directed, or assigned.

Education and Experience Required

  • Requires Masters-level education in Social Work, Counseling, or other related mental health field
  • Knowledge of and experience with adolescents, including adolescent development, trauma-informed care, and group support
  • Knowledge of and experience with lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning youth
  • Clinical licensure in Maryland, or license-eligible preferred

To apply, please send the following items to telliott@rainbowyouthalliancemd.org:

  • CV/resume
  • Cover letter highlighting relevant experiences and education
  • 3 professional references

UUCR-Rainbow Youth Alliance is an equal employment opportunity employer and is committed to maintaining a non-discriminatory work environment. UUCR-RYA does not discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or any other characteristic protected by applicable law.

Call for Volunteer Attorneys for Center Global

Center Global Call for Volunteer Attorneys
Center Global is seeking attorneys who would be able and interested in taking on an asylum case pro bono.   Richard Kelley, coordinates legal program efforts for Center Global.  Richard would be able to mentor you through the process if you’ve never done an asylum case before.  If you are willing, we can use your effort.
If you are an attorney, and would be able and interested in taking on a case pro bono, please fill out this form.
Since 2012, Center Global has served 200 LGBT individuals from Africa, Southeast Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean, the Middle East, and the former Soviet Union countries and Russia seeking asylum in the United States. A program of the DC Center for the LGBT Community, Center Global provides a welcoming environment to LGBTQI asylum seekers, and works to address individual legal and social needs

ETC Response to Recent Arrest in the Murder of Zoe Spears

Empowering the Transgender Communityer Community

Earline Budd, Executive Director of Empowering the Transgender Community, released the following statement following the arrest of a man believed to be responsible for the death of Zoe Spears.

On July 18th LBGTQ community and others received information that Prince Georges County police and detectives had apprehended a suspect in the June 13th murder of Zoe Spears. They showed a large poster of 33 year old Gerardo Thomas who was arrested and said to be a resident of Baltimore Maryland.  We would like to first say thank you to the Prince Georges County Police and Detectives for their hard work in bringing closure to Zoe’s murder.   But our community still will not and cannot rest until the murderer of Ashanti Carmon is apprehended also.  Both of these women were young and did not deserve to lose their lives this way, now leaving a void in transgender community.  We continue to feel strongly that it is not by coincidence that these two women were killed in Fairmont Heights within 90 days apart and only 5 blocks apart in Fairmont Heights Maryland.

The Transgender community will continue to speak out for justice in cases like this.   We hope that the police uncover some surveillance in the area where our sister and friend Ashanti Carmon was killed too.  We are happy that both Prince Georges County and the District of Columbia officials are working to assure that there are resources in place to help transgender women who find themselves in survival mode and seeking help.

On Sunday July 21st at 3:00 pm, Rev. Elder Akousa McCray will be doing a “Special Alter Call and Prayer”, as we thank God for this case being solved.  This service will be open to the community and at MCCDC located at 474 Ridge Street NW, Washington, D.C. 20001.

Today we still are asking the transgender community “PLEASE STAY OFF OF EASTERN AVENUE”, and seek resources from transgender community advocates and leaders.

API Movie Nights

Join the DC Mayor’s Office on Asian & Pacific Islander Affairs for a Movie Night Series! The movies will take place at Chinatown Park located on 5th and Mass Ave. NW. Please RSVP at 2019asianmovienights.eventbrite.com

Movies Include: 

Aug 23rd: Swing Kids

Aug 30th: Crazy Rich Asians

Sep 6th: Bend It Like Beckham

Sep 13th: Monkey King: Hero is Back

 

 

ANC1A Passes Resolutions Supporting LGBTQ Seniors and Seniors with HIV and Urges the DC Council Enact a Gay and Trans “Panic” Defense Ban

ANC 1A Kent Boese

At the July 10, 2019, meeting of Advisory Neighborhood Commission 1A (ANC1A), the Commission considered two resolutions introduced by Commissioner Kent Boese and unanimously passed both measures critical to the needs and safety of the LGBTQ community.

B23-0037 – the Care for LGBTQ Seniors and Seniors with HIV Amendment Act of 2019 – was recently intruded by Councilmembers Anita Bonds and Mary Cheh. As introduced, the bill includes LGBTQ seniors and seniors with HIV in the definition of groups of greatest social need for the purpose of allocating funds. It also establishes an LGBTQ HIV long-term care bill of rights. While ANC1A believes there is much more that needs to be done to support our seniors and LGBTQ community, the Commission believes this bill is an excellent start.

ANC1A also passed a measure requesting that the Secure A Fair and Equitable Trial Act of 2017 (ban on gay and trans “panic” defense bill) be reintroduced and passed by the DC Council. The bill was previously introduced in Council session 22 but died in the Committee on the Judiciary and Public Safety. The failure to move this important legislation in one of the most progressive cities in the United States, and the city with the highest population of LGBTQ residents in the country, is both disappointing and unacceptable.

As introduced, the Secure A Fair and Equitable Trial Act of 2017 would required that upon the request of either the prosecutor or the defendant, the court would instruct the jury against letting bias, sympathy, prejudice, or public opinion influence its decision. It also would establish limits on defenses that seek to excuse violence on the basis of a victim’s identity.

See Related Documents Below:

2019-07 – Letter of support for reintroducing the “Secure a Fair and Equitable Trial Act of 2017”

2019-07 – Letter of support for B23-0037 – Care for LGBTQ Seniors and Seniors with HIV Amendment Act of 2019

 

 

Fight Hate in DC: 10 Things You Can Do

10 Things You Can Do Right Now

If you attended the Vigil Against the Violence last month or last nights LGBTQ Community Meeting on Hate Violence hosted by Eleanor Holmes Norton, you know that there is a lot of work to be done to address the increase in Hate Crimes in DC.  Here are some things you can do right now to make a difference.

(1) Tell the DC Council to take action on hate crimes and pass the Trans and Gay Panic Defense Bill.  The gay and trans “panic” defense is a legal strategy which asks a jury to find that a victim’s sexual orientation or gender identity is to blame for the defendant’s violent reaction, including murder.  Here in the District of Columbia the gay “panic defense” was used in the case of Tony Hunter.   Tony was a black gay man murdered in 2008 outside of a gay club on 9th Street NW.  And the man who killed him was sentenced to a mere six months in jail.  Learn more and sign the petition here.

(2) Celebrate the Life of Zoe Spears.  A memorial to celebrate the life of Zoe Spears July 12th at 10 AM at the Metropolitan Community Church.   Come be part of this event and honor Zoe’s memory.  thedccenter.org/events/zoespears

(3) Organize!  Join us for the next DC Anti-Violence Project Meeting.  The DC Anti-Violence Project aims to reduce violence against LGBTQ individuals (and those perceived as LGBTQ) through community outreach, education, monitoring of cases, advocacy, and community support.  thedccenter.org/events/dcavp

(4) Tell the DC Council to decriminalize sex work in DC.  Policing and criminalization of sex work is one of the primary sites of racial profiling, police violence, and mass incarceration of Black and brown women, girls, and trans and gender nonconforming folks. This violence is compounded when they are also denied access to housing, health care, transportation, healthy food, and other basic human needs based on discrimination and stigma. The decriminalization of sex work is one step in ending this violence.  Learn more and sign the petition here.

(5) Drop off food at Casa Ruby or Wanda Alston House or make hygiene kits for LGBTQ folks experiencing homelessness.   Zoe Spears was a client at both Casa Ruby or Wanda Alston House.  If you’d like to sign up to make dinner for youth experiencing homelessness at Casa Ruby or the Wanda Alston House, or if you would like to pull together a group of folks to make kits for LGBTQ people experiencing homelessness, Learn more about group volunteer opportunities here.

(6) Learn how hate crimes impact other communities.   Hate crimes are not just increasing in the LGBTQ community.   People (including some of us in the LGBTQ community) are being targeted because of our race, ethnicity, ancestry, religion, or disability.  The Hate Crimes Bias Task Force is a good place to learn more about all hate crimes in our city and to work in partnership with other communities that are being impacted.  We are stronger when we work together!  The next Hate Crimes Bias Task Force Meeting is July 24th at 7:00 PM at the DC Center.  thedccenter.org/events/hatebiastaskforce

(7) Attend your local ANC Meetings and run for office in the District! An ANC is a non-partisan, neighborhood body made up of locally elected representatives called Advisory Neighborhood Commissioners. They are a unique feature of the District’s Home Rule Charter.  The Commissioners, who serve two-year terms without pay, are elected at DC Elections in November in even-numbered years (e.g. 2016). The ANCs were established to bring government closer to the people, and to bring the people closer to government.  Our LGBT ANC reps are our fiercest advocates and supporters.   Learn more about ANC’s here, and if you are thinking about running for office the Victory Fund is a great place to start!

(8)  Tell DC Council to support the LGBT Older Adults and Long Term Survivors of HIV Amendment Act.  A lot of the recent conversations have focused on the need for services for the LGBTQ community, and a lot of work is underway to fight for the resources we need.   The Care for LGBTQ Seniors and Seniors with HIV Amendment Act addresses this issue for our seniors and long term survivors!  The bill, modeled after similar efforts in Massachusetts and California, adds LGBT elders and older people with HIV to the list of those older people in the District who are considered to have greatest social need under the Older Americans Act (OAA). Making this small but important update to how the law is implemented in DC, ensures that LGBT elders and people living with HIV have equal access to crucial government aging services and programming.  Learn more and sign the petition here.

(9) Make your voice heard at the Mayor’s Office of LGBTQ Affairs Advisory Committee Meeting.  The Office of LGBTQ Affairs works in collaboration with an Advisory Committee, which is appointed by the Mayor.  Their mission is to “address concerns of the LGBTQ community and find innovative ways of utilizing government resources to help address issues affecting LGBTQ residents of Washington, DC.” These meetings are open to the public and include time for concerned community members to make public comments.    Come to this meeting and make your voice heard!  thedccenter.org/events/lgbtq-affairs-meeting

(10) Take care of each other.   Take time to reach out to your friends who have have been impacted by violence recently, as well as friends who have experienced violence in the past and may be triggered by what is currently happening.    If you know someone who needs a person to talk to, call the DC Center during office hours to arrange an appointment with a licensed clinical social worker (202) 682-2245.  If we are at capacity we will do our best to connect you to other resources in the community.   Also, let folks know about the Queer Women Working Through Trauma group at the DC Center.  A new 8 week session starts in September.

 

 

Washington Post Op-Ed on Recent Violence

The Washington Post released an op-ed article titled, “The DC Area needs better resources to help the LGBTQ Community,” which speaks on the recent hate crimes within the DC LGBT Community. Written by Samantha Schmidt, the article highlights instances of violence and the lack of resources in the area available to help those who are vulnerable in our community.

Unsubscripted/Shorter Version of the Article 

Full-Length Article From Washington Post