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NBC Affiliate In Philadelphia Botches Attempt To Cover Trans Woman's Murder

NBC 10
NBC 10 Philadelphia is finding itself in the crosshairs of LGBT organizations after the affiliate "sensationalized and inaccurately reported" a story surrounding a trans woman's murder. The victim, who was brutally murdered and dismembered last week, was identified by the affiliate using the wrong pronouns and name. The reporter, Nefertiti Jaquez, also chose to include irrelevant information regarding the victim's past, including completely unrelated prior criminal convictions, as well as a former mugshot. According to GLAAD, the report even "included the victim-blaming suggestion that Ms. Williams was murdered following the supposed 'discovery' that she was transgender."

The story first broke last week via trans advocate Monica Roberts and her blog TransGriot.

"One of the reasons we're getting more combative about insisting on respectful media coverage for transpeople is because potential jurors that watch these misgendering and sensationalized reports are being poisoned with this slanted anti-trans coverage that could result in the murder victim at trial not getting justice and the alleged killer going free. 

Hate violenceIt then subsequently caught the attention of GLAAD, who chose to reach out to NBC 10 and give them an opportunity to correct the error. They report that the station has removed the offending clip from their website, but have still chosen to incorporate the victim's prior name and mugshot. 

Unfortunately, as GLAAD subsequently pointed out, such practice is startlingly common. 

"Recently the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs (NCAVP) released its annual Hate Violence Report. Findings for the 2012 calendar year show that in 53% of anti-LGBTQ homicides, the victims were transgender women. Additionally 73% of all anti-LGBTQ homicide victims were people of color. Just this past April, three transgender women of color were murdered. These crimes often go unreported in the media and when media outlets do cover the stories, the reports are often dehumanizing and disrespectful."

To combat this, GLAAD has created a guide for journalists to use when covering stories about transgender people, such as proper terminology, name and pronoun usage, and a brief explanation as to why usage of proper language is so important. GLAAD is also asking anyone who comes across a defamatory report to please let them know at

Straight Man on the Street Interviews Philly's Gay Community: VIDEO


It's Pride week in Philadelphia, so straight man on the street Evan Burdette went down to the Gayborhood to feel the pulse on Amanda Bynes, RuPaul, the community's favorite thing about being gay, street preachers, and Omarosa.


Continue reading "Straight Man on the Street Interviews Philly's Gay Community: VIDEO" »

Philadelphia Mayor Signs Groundbreaking LGBT Rights Legislation: VIDEO


Last month I reported on the passage of an LGBT health benefits bill by Philadelphia's City Council that would give tax credits and incentives to businesses offering health plans that include gay partners and children. It also offers tax credits to businesses offering specific healthcare benefits to trans employees and bans discrimination against non-union trans city employees.

Watch Mayor Michael Nutter sign the bill, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Mariela Castro Visits Liberty Bell in Philadelphia: VIDEO


Cuban gay rights activist and daughter of President Raul Castro is in Philadelphia to pick up an award from Philadelphia's Equality Forum after a brief tussle with the State Dept. over a visa approval, which she was granted last week.


The AP reports:

Mariela Castro spoke briefly to reporters during her sightseeing tour. Asked about the health of her uncle and father, Castro replied: "They're wonderful, and I learn a lot from their example."

Commenting on the gay rights movement in the U.S., she said, "In this election especially, they showed that they form a very important vote in American society."

A married mother of three, Castro leads Cuba's National Center for Sex Education, which is part of the island nation's public health ministry. She is the country's most prominent gay rights activist, having trained police on relations with the LGBT community and lobbied lawmakers to legalize same-sex unions. She was elected as a deputy in Cuba's parliament in February.

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Boy Scouts to Vacate Philadelphia Headquarters in Settlement of Long Legal Battle: VIDEO

A long-running battle over the Philadelphia property that the Boy Scouts have been occupying rent-free since 2008 has been settled, ABC6 reports:

ScoutsA Boy Scouts of America group will vacate its city-owned Philadelphia headquarters in return for $825,000 under an agreement that settles a long legal battle over the organization's ban on gays, Mayor Michael Nutter's office said Friday.

The Boy Scouts Cradle of Liberty Council staff will leave its downtown Philadelphia headquarters of 85 years by June 30 and the retail store in the building will close by Oct. 31. In exchange, the city will reimburse the Boy Scouts for improvements made to the building, Nutter's office said.

The group's rent-free use of the building came under fire after the Boy Scouts of America barred gays from membership. The city unsuccessfully sought to have the chapter evicted for violation of Philadelphia's anti-discrimination policies.

Watch their report, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Philadelphia Passes LGBT Health Bill, and a Civil Union Bill is Introduced in Pennslvania

Pennsylvania Rep. Mark Cohen has introduced a civil union bill in Pennsylvania.

Mark_cohenPhilly Mag's Josh Middleton reports:

According to a press release I received from Cohen’s office, the bill would define a civil union “would make all state laws applicable to marriage also applicable to a civil union. The bill also would allow reciprocity for civil unions performed legally in other states and the recognition of same sex-marriage in other states as civil unions in Pennsylvania.”

In the press release, Cohen calls civil unions exactly what they are: a “middle-of-the-road compromise position between constitutionally banning and permitting gay marriages.” And just to appease those religious dissenters, he states that, “Nothing in this bill would require any religion or any clergyman to perform any ceremony uniting people in a civil union. This legislation will merely offer committed gay couples the same legal rights that are bestowed upon married people without the status of marriage.”

In other LGBT-related Pennsylvania news, the Philadelphia City Council has voted to approve a broad LGBT health benefits bill, PGN reports:

Bill 130224, which passed with a 14-three vote, would not only give a tax credit incentive to businesses that offered employee health plans that would include same-sex partners and children, but it would also include a substantial amount of benefits to the transgender community as well.

The bill ,which was introduced by Councilman Jim Kenney, would revamp the city’s health care plan to ban discrimination against non-union transgender city employees and would instate a Transgender Health Tax Credit that would allow companies to offer healthcare specific-needs to the transgender community.

City buildings would also be required to provide gender-neutral bathroom and would also ban employment discrimination in the city’s non-discrimination law.


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