"President Obama has made it clear that it only gets better because we make it better."
-Valerie Jarrett, Senior Advisor to the President, at the White House LGBT Conference on Safe Schools and Communities
Our state's future prosperity and health depends on all Californians having a fair chance to thrive and succeed. However, the growing population of young men of color faces poor health and well-being outcomes at a disproportionately higher rate than their white counterparts. The proliferation of severe school disciplinary measures disproportionately pushes boys and young men ofcolor out of our public education system.
I was so proud to testify this morning in support of the Fair, Accurate, Inclusive, and Respectful (FAIR) Education Act (SB 48), and I’m even more pleased to share the good news that in a vote of 6-3, the FAIR Education Act passed out of the California Senate Education Committee. This important bill addresses what State Senator Mark Leno, author of SB 48, called “the conspicuous absence of protection” when it comes to sexual orientation and gender identity in our education laws.
Columnist Dan Savage launched "It Gets Better," a video message in response to recent youth suicides to tell LGBT youth that life gets better after high school.
For five years, GSA Network has been the leader and convener of the National Association of GSA Networks. Each year we bring the members of the National Association together for a national summit aimed at strengthening the GSA movement across the country. This year, we held the National Gathering in Providence, Rhode Island -- our first time meeting in the Northeast. Our amazing local host organization was Youth Pride, Inc, an LGBTQ youth center in Providence that coordinates a statewide coalition of GSA clubs.
On June 16, 2010 closing arguments begin in the federal trial challenging the constitutionality of California's Prop 8, the ban on marriage for same-sex couples that voters passed in November 2008. Judge Vaughn Walker issued a set of questions that he asked each side to address in their closing arguments.
GSA Network offers our congratulations to the thirteen high school seniors who won an eQuality Scholarship this year! The high school students will each receive a $5,000 college scholarship from the eQuality Scholarship Collaborative, which awards students in Northern and Central California who have promoted understanding of and equality for the LGBTQ community. Additionally, one nursing student will receive a $5,000 scholarship and one medical student will receive a $2,000 scholarship. GSA Network is a proud member of the eQuality Scholarship Collaborative.
You probably know a lot about Constance McMillen. Constance is the 18-year-old senior at Itawamba Agricultural High School in Fulton, Mississippi who had the guts to challenge her district’s ban on same-sex couples attending prom. She asked her Vice Principal for permission to bring her girlfriend and to wear a tux. He said no. So she sought help from the ACLU. A federal judge ruled it was unconstitutional for the district to ban same-sex couples. So school officials cancelled the prom.