(Photo via: Pridebook.com)
Prom can be an important right of passage for young adults, and one that not all LGBTQ individuals get to experience in a positive way when school districts choose to discriminate against same-sex couples or even restricting who gets to be considered Prom Queen or King.
If you live near the Staten Island area, you can enjoy your prom in a safe environment at the second annual LGBTQ Prom, as sponsored by the Staten Island LGBTQ Community Center.
The Staten Island LGBT Community Center, an initiative of Community Health Action of Staten Island (CHASI), will be sponsoring its second annual LGBT Prom Friday from 8 to 11 p.m. at the center, located at 25 Victory Blvd. (corner of Bay St.), third floor. Tickets are $20 per person, and must be purchased in advance before July 7. For tickets or sponsorship, contact Elysa Fein, LGBT youth program coordinator, at 718-808-1353 or Elysa.firstname.lastname@example.org; or the center director, Ralph W. Vogel at 718-808-3151 or Ralph.email@example.com. Tickets can also be purchased at the center between 3 and 8 p.m., Monday through Friday.
The LGBTQ Prom is an evening full of music, dancing, food and friends. LGBTQ and allied youth can celebrate community and express themselves freely in a supportive, fun, and safe environment. The event is open to all LGBTQ and allied youth ages 15 to 20.
LGBTQ youth often face discrimination and ridicule when bringing a same-sex date or for wearing prom attire that corresponds with their gender identity. Community members can help cover the expense of this affirming event. A donation of $20 will sponsor one person and $40 will sponsor a couple.
We think this a great idea and hope all who are attending have a fantastic time! If you go, please do send in pictures of your prom attire!! You could even surprise your date with some of our jewelry. ;) This code: HGKSBL will get you 10% off.
Gov. Lincoln Chafee, an Independent, signed a bill on Saturday which allows for civil unions in Rhode Island. The bill, unfortunately, doesn’t go far enough as to legalize gay marriage but he did sign the measure with a promise to move towards that ultimate goal.
Chafee said he signed the civil unions bill with “reservations” because it “brings tangible rights and benefits to thousands of Rhode Islanders. It also provides a foundation from which we will continue to fight for full marriage equality.”
He had two major criticisms of the civil union bill: that it failed to provide full marriage equality to same-sex couples and that it allowed religious entities to choose to not recognize civil unions.
Describing the proposal that passed the tiny New England state’s Senate this week as “a step forward,” he said it did not fully achieve its goals of giving same gender pairs the same rights, benefits, protections and responsibilities as married couples.
There is a huge weakness in the bill though that no religious organization, including some hospitals, cemeteries, schools and community centres, or its employees will be required to recognize civil unions.
This could mean that at certain community centers partner’s could be refused the right to make medical decisions for their spouses, health insurance benefits and property rights. Most gay advocacy organizations had the same reservations as the governor as he says,
"This extraordinary exemption eviscerates the important rights that enacting a civil union law was meant to guarantee for same sex couples in the first place."
Hopefully the Governor will make good on his promise to work towards the ultimate goal of complete equal rights, but for now it is a great step forward and a wonderful thing to have gotten passed just before the summer.
We know we’re late in blogging about this but technical difficulties (and celebratory partying) prevented us from posting earlier. On to the important thing—
NEW YORK PASSES GAY MARRIAGE LAW!!!
It is now officially the largest state to have done so and that made the pride parade over the weekend even more spectacular. It passed 33 to 29 with four members of the Republican majority joining the vote, and only one Democrat voting against.
Senator Mark J. Grisanti was one of the Republican Senators who voted to pass the law after promising to oppose during his campaign. Grisanti said,
“I apologize for those who feel offended,” Mr. Grisanti said, adding, “I cannot deny a person, a human being, a taxpayer, a worker, the people of my district and across this state, the State of New York, and those people who make this the great state that it is the same rights that I have with my wife”
No doubt there are thousands of couples in New York right now who are celebrating because of your change of heart! Thank you to everyone who lobbied and supported these efforts. We’ve still got a long way to go and a lot of states to reach before true equality is achieved, but little by little, people are seeing the light and that’s something to remain hopeful for.
So in case you were waiting to pop the question, now is the perfect time!! Go, live, love and enjoy each other— roll around in the happiness and love that you deserve to have!! We’re overcome with it all right now and hope you all are too!!! :)
Love, Love, LOVE,
(Source: The New York Times)