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  WINDY CITY TIMES

Youth News
2004-12-22

This article shared 3445 times since Wed Dec 22, 2004
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Columbia Raises Funds for Visual AIDS

Members of Columbia College Chicago's GLBT community, and friends, gathered at the HotHouse on Dec. 1 for 'Postmark: World AIDS Day, 2004,' an exhibition held to benefits Visual AIDS. The event was sponsored by Columbia's Office of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Concerns, which is part of the college's Office of Multicultural Affairs. The evening featured an exhibition and silent auction of 5'x7' original artworks with a theme related to the AIDS epidemic. All artworks were produced by members of the Columbia arts community and all proceeds from the sale of artwork benefited the Visual AIDS organization. The opening raised more than $400. The exhibition will be up in the HotHouse Gallery, 31 E. Balbo, through Jan. 10 and remaining works are available for purchase. Call Courtney Arnold at ?) 344-8594.

Lambda Legal Education Campaign's Hot Spots

Concerned that gay youth are increasingly being denied their legal rights at school in the aftermath of the election, Lambda Legal announced that it is expanding its ongoing campaign on youth rights to communities where students have faced antigay hostility in recent weeks.

In Missouri, Utah, Alabama, Iowa and Texas, Lambda Legal is asking local television and radio stations to air public service announcements about the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning ( LGBTQ ) youth in school. Lambda Legal is also reaching out to state and local organizations in the communities, to provide comprehensive materials that educate youth and schools about their rights and obligations.

Lambda Legal cited five specific incidents in just the last month, all in communities where the organization is now reaching out with its education campaign. They include:

Dance controversy in Salt Lake City

A high school in the Salt Lake City suburbs created a new policy requiring students to get written permission from their parents if they want to take a same-sex date to a school dance. Students bringing a different-sex date to a dance aren't required to get any permission from their parents.

Gay pride t-shirt dispute in Missouri

A high school punished a gay student for wearing t-shirts with gay pride messages and then banned him from wearing the shirts to school again, even though antigay clothing and bumper stickers are common among other students at the school. The ACLU filed a federal lawsuit on the student's behalf.

Textbooks and 'marriage' in Texas

The Texas Board of Education wouldn't approve new health textbooks for high school and middle school students unless major textbook publishers agreed to change the wording to explicitly define marriage as a union between a man and a woman.

Legislation banning gay materials and speakers in Alabama

A state legislator introduced a bill to prohibit the use of public funds for the purchase of school textbooks or library materials 'that recognize or promote homosexuality as an acceptable lifestyle' and would also prohibit teachers from distributing materials or hosting classroom speakers who suggest homosexuality is acceptable.

Iowa bans teachers from

being gay inclusive

A school board in Pleasant Valley, Iowa, passed a policy that prevents teachers from reading a book with a gay character in class. A local teacher had read the book The Misfits to classes in recent years in an effort to prevent name-calling in school.

In each city and state, Lambda Legal is asking local ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, WB and UPN affiliates, as well as a range of local radio stations ( including alternative rock, country and Spanish-language stations ) to air PSAs that give factual information about LGBTQ youth rights and how people in these communities can get assistance or more in-depth material.

See www.lambdalegal.org . The cities where the campaign is already active include: Atlanta, Dallas, Miami, Washington, D.C., St. Louis, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, Houston, Detroit, Albuquerque and Denver.

Scholarships from Family Pride and COLAGE

The Family Pride Coalition and COLAGE ( Children Of Lesbians And Gays Everywhere ) announced the 2004 recipients of the Lee Dubin Scholarships.

The scholarship provides up to $1,000 for college students who are the children of LGBT parents, and who have demonstrated a commitment to creating change in the LGBT community. They are named in honor of Lee Dubin, a gay father and one of the founders of the Family Pride Coalition. Dubin's daughter, Ali Nickel-Dubin, is one of the founders of COLAGE. This marks the 11th year of the scholarship program, and to date, more than $20,000 in funds have been distributed

'By confronting homophobia directly and lending their voices to the movement for social justice, each has made significant positive change in their respective communities,' said Beth Teper, executive director of COLAGE. 'All of the applicants represent the next generation of young COLAGE leaders raised by LGBT parents and families who are speaking out and taking action.'

One of the four recipients this year is a junior at University of Illinois-Chicago, Rohan Barrett. Barrett is a junior studying math education and political science. Forced to leave Jamaica because of his sexuality, and taken in by a friend's lesbian parents, Barrett has become a strong activist on behalf of LGBT communities. He has been involved with the Point Foundation, About Face Theatre and other projects in the Chicago LGBT community.

www.colage.org

www.familypride.org .


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