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Israel To Recognize Sex Change Without Gender Reassignment Surgery

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Israel plans to allow transgender people to legally change their gender without having to undergo gender reassignment surgery first, reports Haaretz.

The announcement comes after two transgender women filed a petition against the Interior Ministry’s demand that they undergo gender reassignment surgery as a condition for altering their identity card gender from male to female.

One of the petitioners is Ronit Liran Shaked (above), a lawyer who up until two years ago lived as a man and was married to a woman. 

The two women argued that they were not interested in sex reassignment surgery, and that making this a prerequisite is unreasonable.

At a meeting on the issue held by Deputy Attorney General Dina Zilber, the Health Ministry explained that other countries have recognized criteria for determining that a person has changed his gender even without sex-change surgery. Based on this information, a decision was made to change the existing Interior Ministry procedure. 


Lesbian Widow Sues FedEx For Refusing To Pay Survivor Benefits: READ

 

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The widow of a FedEx employee is suing the company for refusing to provide her with federally required pension benefits, reports NCLR.

Lesly Frances TABOADA-HALLThe company’s decision to deny Stacey Schuett (pictured above left) benefits is solely because both spouses are women.

Schuett and Lesly Taboada-Hall (pictured right and above with their two children) were together for 30 years before they married in 2013. After being diagnosed with cancer in 2010, Taboada-Hall and Schuett married from a hospital bed in their California home in front of their two children and close family members and friends.

At the time of Taboada-Hall’s death, she had been a FedEx employee for more than 26 years.

FedEx has refused to provide the benefits because its pension plan incorporates the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), even though that law was struck down as unconstitutional in 2013.

Representing Schuett, attorney Nina Wasow said:

“Federal pension law protects same-sex spouses just as it does opposite-sex spouses. Employees who have same-sex spouses deserve the same certainty as others that their hard-earned retirement benefits will be there to protect their families.”

Also representing Schuett, NCLR Legal Director Shannon Minter added:

“FedEx cannot hide behind DOMA to justify its discrimination against Ms. Schuett and her family. The Supreme Court’s decision striking down DOMA made clear that employers must recognize the spouses of their gay and lesbian employees.”

Read details of Schuett's complaint, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Unnamed Gay Actor In Sero-Discordant Couple Reports Successful Surrogate Conception Thanks To Sperm Washing

WashingStatistical data about lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender parents raising children tells a complex story about the modern American family. An analysis of census and survey data conducted by the Williams Institute estimated that about 37% of LGBT-identified individuals were the parents to children at some point in their lives.

Less than 10 percent of the surveyed male couples reported that they were raising biological children of their own, compared to 24 percent of female couples. Unsurprisingly, the study does not explicitly mention HIV positive men, an even smaller portion of gay population seeking to have biological children of their own.

For decades the path to biological parenthood for men living with HIV has been complicated given the few, costly medical innovations in the perinatal field available to them. According to an unnamed actor writing for The Hollywood Reporter, however, he and his sero-discordant partner have found success with a technique known as sperm washing.

“We had done our research and found a lab that was working with parents who shared our status,” he writes. “We were lucky: We were set up with a surrogate who was educated and compassionate.”

Sperm washing is a controversial technique the involves the separation, or “washing” of viable sperm cells of the seminal fluid that might carry the HIV virus. Currently the Centers for Disease Control still advise most doctors against assisting HIV positive men attempting to conceive through the use of washed sperm. The American Society for Reproductive Medicine, however, reversed its position in 2002, twelve years after an HIV positive man accidentally infected his wife via sperm washing. There are today a handful of clinics scattered throughout the country willing to attempt the method.


Illinois Obamacare Ad Features Married Gay Couple: VIDEO

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An ad for GetCoveredIllinois.gov features a married gay couple, Jake and Allen, talking about the benefits of signing up for affordable coverage.

Watch the 30-second spot where the duo explains how they got covered and its benefits for both of them as a married couple, AFTER THE JUMP...

[h/t joe.my.god]

Continue reading "Illinois Obamacare Ad Features Married Gay Couple: VIDEO" »


Mat Staver: Bans On Gay Conversion Therapy Are A 'Direct Assault' On God - LISTEN

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Mat Staver took to his Faith and Freedom radio talk show to look at the recent trend of U.S. judges ruling ex-gay conversion therapy unconstitutional. California, Washington, D.C., and New Jersey, Staver intoned, all buckled under the gays’ “direct assault” on God and Christianity. He called upon the show’s listeners to rally against conversion therapy’s ban, despite many signs pointing to bans becoming the rule rather than the exception.

"As a policy matter, if you were to sanction homosexuality in the law, you are sanctioning harmful activity to individuals,” he said. “It is patently unhealthy, both physically and mentally.” 

Have yourself a chuckle and give Mat Staver’s Faith and Freedom a good old-fashioned ironic-listen here, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Chinese Court Rules Against Gay Conversion Therapy Clinic: VIDEO

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Chinese gay rights activists counted another victory this past Friday following the Haidian District Court’s ruling against a local gay conversion therapy center. Yang Teng, a 30-year old man living in Beijing (who was previously quoted under the pseudonym Xiao Zhen), filed a lawsuit against at the Xinyu Piaoxian clinic after being subjected to a routine of hypnosis and electroshock therapy. Teng checked himself into the clinic after being pressured by his family to attempt “curing” himself of his homosexuality, he explained.

As of 2001, the People’s Republic no longer recognizes homosexuality as a mental illness. Presiding judge Wang Chenghong based her decision on China’s official legal position on homosexuality, reasoning that Teng’s gay desires were not something that could be medically treated. The clinic has been ordered to issue an official apology to Teng and to pay damages totaling 3,500 yuan ($563 US.)

“We accomplished our goal, which was to establish that gay conversion is not a legitimate form of therapy,” Yang said soon after a decision was made. I’m going to take this verdict and show it to my parents so they can see a Chinese court said homosexuality isn’t a mental illness.”

Teng’s family insisted upon his checking into Xinyu Piaoxian after seeing advertisements for the clinic on Baidu, one of China’s largest search engines. Baidu was also named in Teng’s lawsuit, though Judge Chenghong’s ruling did not call for the company to pay damages as well. The search engine would be well advised, she explained, in being more careful in its decisions to run ads for questionable services.

Watch an AllOut video on Zhen's story, AFTER THE JUMP...

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