TRUMP PLAN TO RESCIND TRANSGENDER STUDENT GUIDANCE LIKELY HAPPENING TODAY: According to a letter obtained by The Washington Post, the Trump Administration’s plan to rescind protective guidance for transgender students is slated for release TODAY. The New York Times just posted a story detailing more on the battle inside the administration, saying “[Attorney General Jeff] Sessions, who strongly opposes expanding gay, lesbian and transgender rights, fought Ms. DeVos on the issue and pressed her to relent because he could not go forward without her consent. … Mr. Trump sided with his attorney general, these Republicans said. And Ms. DeVos, faced with the choice of resigning or defying the president, has agreed to go along … the two secretaries were still disputing the final language.” HRC experts and parents of transgender children are also available for press throughout the day via firstname.lastname@example.org.
- More than 1,000 parents of transgender children have urged President Trump not to turn his back on their children, in a letter signed by parents from 45 states and Washington, D.C., and organized by HRC’s Parents for Transgender Equality Council. More on the letter from HRC.
- HRC will be joining the National Center for Transgender Equality, other advocates and parents of transgender children for a rally at the White House today. More information here.
— Chad Griffin (@ChadHGriffin) February 22, 2017
- During his press conference yesterday, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer invoked “states’ rights” when questioned about whether the guidance would be revoked.
“States rights” is at best a cop out, at worst a dog whistle to those who seek a license to discriminate. #OurRevolution
— Ben Jealous (@BenJealous) February 21, 2017
INVESTORS REPRESENTING $11 TRILLION IN ASSETS SPEAK OUT AGAINST TEXAS SB 6: Today, HRC hailed a new letter to Texas lawmakers from top global investors speaking out against the discriminatory Texas SB 6. This is the first coordinated group of global investors to speak out against the anti-LGBTQ bill. “As we have seen in states like North Carolina, business leaders are decidedly opposed to anti-LGBTQ discrimination — both as a workplace matter and because it’s simply the right thing to do,” said JoDee Winterhof, HRC Senior Vice President for Policy and Political Affairs. “Discrimination is costly. We are pleased to see this group of investors forcefully telling Texas lawmakers — including bill sponsors Dan Patrick and Sen. Lois Kolkhorst — that SB 6 will negatively affect Texas’ future.” In the letter, the long-term investors in companies with hundreds of thousands of employees in Texas write, “we are concerned that any form of legislation that allows or facilitates discrimination against LGBT people may make it difficult for our portfolio companies to attract and retain top talent to work in their Texas-based operations.” The anti-transgender SB 6 is one of the many egregious anti-LGBTQ bills introduced in Texas this legislative session. More from HRC.
WHAT WE’RE LISTENING TO WEDNESDAY: WNYC’s Matt Katz (@MattKatz00) tells the story of Mexican transgender advocate and political asylee Ishalaa Ortega, who lives in New York and fights for LGBTQ refugees and asylum seekers. Ortega and other LGBTQ refugees fleeing some of the most violent regimes in the world will suffer under President Donald Trump’s executive order to suspend the refugee admissions program, Katz reports. More from WNYC.
NEW TRUMP IMMIGRATION GUIDANCE ATTACKS AMERICAN VALUES: Yesterday, the Trump Administration released guidance laying out its plans to dramatically increase the number of immigration agents, step up deportations, strip protections from undocumented immigrants and enlist local law enforcement officials as de facto enforcers. In a powerful new video from Reform Immigration FOR America, undocumented children share the fears they are facing by reading the words of Anne Frank. We at HRC stand alongside and among the millions affected by yesterday’s announcement. LGBTQ people are immigrants; we are refugees. Watch the heartbreaking video here.
TRUMP’S SCOTUS PICK IS WRONG FOR THE LGBTQ COMMUNITY: In a letter to the editors of The New York Times, Harper Jean Tobin of the National Center for Transgender Equality details Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch’s anti-LGBTQ record. “Judge Neil M. Gorsuch may be less caustic in his personal style than Justice Antonin Scalia, but his record shows legal views that would undermine basic civil rights for L.G.B.T. Americans,” Tobin writes. More from The New York Times and read HRC’s report: Gorsuch is Wrong for the LGBTQ Community, Supreme Court.
OKLAHOMA BILL COULD PREVENT CITIES FROM PROTECTING THEIR LGBTQ RESIDENTS: SB 694 would bar cities from adding gender identity and sexual orientation to their non-discrimination ordinances — along with any other protected class not covered in state laws. More from Fox 23.
MEET THE TRANS MAN SUING TO REPEAL HB2: Joaquin Carcaño is the lead plaintiff in a federal lawsuit brought by the ACLU and Lambda Legal challenging N.C.’s discriminatory HB2 law. Watch his story in this new video from the ACLU of North Carolina.
HRC CALLS FOR CONTINUED ENGAGEMENT AT U.N. HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL: As U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson took office earlier this month, HRC joined a group of human rights organizations urging Tillerson and his staff to continue U.S. engagement with the United Nations Human Rights Council. Established in 2006, the council has in recent years taken up an increasing number of initiatives aimed at protecting the human rights of LGBTQ people. More from HRC.
OnMilwaukee reports on a local effort to support LGBTQ incarcerated people by sending them books… Northwest Arkansas interviewed Evee, a local transgender girl, about her coming out experience and the Arkansas transgender community…