LGBT

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Tough talk with 2tender4house, a new New Orleans independent poetry festival

Posted By on Thu, Mar 23, 2017 at 12:35 PM

Left to right: Laura Theobald, Prairie M. Faul, Zoë Blair-Schlagenhauf, Jo Gehringer, El Pearson — organizers of 2tender4house
  • Left to right: Laura Theobald, Prairie M. Faul, Zoë Blair-Schlagenhauf, Jo Gehringer, El Pearson — organizers of 2tender4house

A new independent poetry festival will take place across town on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, March 24-26. 2tender4house (or just "fest," as its founders refer to it) is a collaboration between two poetry ventures, the online journal tenderness, yea and the publisher/journal 2fast4house. I spoke with some of the festival's organizers about the festival, its components, and its underlying aims, which are to showcase local queer, trans, and POC poets and to foster a more inclusive New Orleans poetry community.

Gambit: Hi! Can you introduce yourselves to the readers?

ZOË BLAIR-SCHLAGENHAUF: I'm an artist and designer in New Orleans and the cofounder of tenderness, yea.

PRAIRIE M. FAUL:
I'm a trans poet and Cajun native of Louisiana.

JO GEHRINGER:
I'm also a confounder of tenderness, yea, and still alive somehow.

EL PEARSON:
I cofounded 2Fast2House and just moved to New Orleans like two weeks ago.

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Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Inaugural Disability Pride Festival March 25 is for and by people with disabilities

Posted By on Tue, Mar 21, 2017 at 11:41 AM

TIM & SELENA MIDDLETON/CREATIVE COMMONS 2.0
  • TIM & SELENA MIDDLETON/CREATIVE COMMONS 2.0

New Orleans often has lagged behind other cities when it comes to anticipating and accommodating the needs of people with disabilities. In more recent incidents, bus stops failed to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act and a renovation to New Orleans Public Library's Nix branch overlooked a ramp for for people who use wheelchairs.

But a new festival has the potential to shine a greater light on people with disabilities, who make up as much as 19 percent of the American population. At Saturday's all-ages Disability Pride Festival, people with disabilities, their friends, families and allies will gather for New Orleans' first celebration of disability pride — a key aspect of the growing disability rights movement.

The festival is divided into two parts. From 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Advocacy Center of Louisiana (8325 Oak St.), there's a resource fair featuring food, art and social service vendors. Afternoon entertainment follows and includes performances from Irwin Royes (the "world's smallest magician") and an exhibition game from the Rollin' Pelicans wheelchair basketball team. Events are designed to help community members connect and encourage conversations about what it means to be a person with disabilities.

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Thursday, March 16, 2017

State legislation proposed to close loophole in domestic violence situations involving same-sex couples

Posted By on Thu, Mar 16, 2017 at 4:13 PM

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Proposed legislation prefiled for the 2017 Legislature by State Rep. Pat Connick, R-Marrero, aims to close a longstanding loophole in Louisiana’s domestic violence statutes by including same-sex couples.

House Bill 27 would alter the state’s civil and criminal statutes by opening harsher sentencing possibility for abusers in same-sex cohabiting relationships and by providing key public welfare assistance options to same-sex victims.

The bill simply removes the phrase “of opposite sex” from the state’s definition of a household member, a definition that forms a foundation for the domestic abuse battery and domestic aggravated assault charges, as well as support services for victims.

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Friday, March 10, 2017

Transgender community offers policy changes to city officials and NOPD

Posted By on Fri, Mar 10, 2017 at 9:30 PM

Jada Mercedes Cardona, left, leads a town hall meeting March 10 with New Orleans City Councilmembers Jason Williams and LaToya Canttell with NOPD's LGBT liaison Frank Robertson.
  • Jada Mercedes Cardona, left, leads a town hall meeting March 10 with New Orleans City Councilmembers Jason Williams and LaToya Canttell with NOPD's LGBT liaison Frank Robertson.

Jada Mercedes Cardona knew at 4 years old. "It felt right. I ran to my mom to tell her what I discovered, and what was going to happen now?" Cardona told a crowd at First Unitarian Universalist Church. "Instead of being received with hugs, kisses, understanding and love, I got beaten, and made to proclaim, several times, that I would never repeat those words to anyone again."

Cardona began transitioning at age 35, after living as a gay man, and was tortured by low self-esteem and "a cycle of hate I still struggle with today" — an "internalized oppression," she said, "so much so that you can't see anything good about yourself."

"Living in one's truth isn't easy," Cardona said.  "I lost everything from living in my truth."

Cardona founded the transgender advocacy group Transitions Louisiana, which hosted a town hall meeting March 10 following the recent deaths of three transgender women in Louisiana — including two people in New Orleans — after one of the most deadly years for transgender people in the U.S.

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Thursday, March 9, 2017

Free HIV training for health care professionals takes place March 11

Posted By on Thu, Mar 9, 2017 at 5:50 PM

JON RAWLINSON, CREATIVE COMMONS
  • JON RAWLINSON, CREATIVE COMMONS

The Tulane University AIDS Education and Training Center and HIV experts from the Tulane University School of Medicine host a training at Amici Ristorante & Bar Saturday about the basics of HIV care for health care professionals. There are discussions of testing and prevention, the PrEP treatments which can help prevent HIV transmission, adolescent HIV, HIV and sexually transmitted infections and other topics designed to familiarize doctors, nurses and other healers with the evolving needs of people with HIV and AIDS.

A Q&A, lunch and a viewing of the Irish Channel St. Patrick's Day parade follows the panels.

It's free to attend for anyone who works in health care, but advance registration is required. Sign-in begins at 9 a.m.

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Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Panelists discuss history of HIV/AIDS in New Orleans March 8

Posted By on Tue, Mar 7, 2017 at 10:15 AM

ACT UP was one of the earliest advocacy organizations for people with AIDS.
  • ACT UP was one of the earliest advocacy organizations for people with AIDS.

Panelists at New Orleans Public Library's Norman Mayer branch discuss the history of HIV and AIDS in New Orleans at an event Wednesday night.

Dr. Russ Burkett, attorney Mark Gonzalez and Crescent Care executive director Noel Twilbeck will discuss their experiences battling the HIV/AIDS crisis. Such discussions are locally relevant in a state with one of the country's highest rates of new infections; some public health experts have speculated that HIV transmission may be on the rise as cultural memory of the worst of the crisis fades.

The panel begins at 6 p.m. It's free to attend, and event sponsors LGBT+ Archives Project of Louisiana provide wine.

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Friday, March 3, 2017

Town hall on transgender violence follows recent murders in Louisiana

Posted By on Fri, Mar 3, 2017 at 6:00 PM

A memorial during 2016's Transgender Day of Remembrance and Resilience in Armstrong Park.
  • A memorial during 2016's Transgender Day of Remembrance and Resilience in Armstrong Park.

Following the deaths of Ciara McElveen and Chyna Gibson in New Orleans and Jaquarrius Holland in Monroe, advocacy group Transitions Louisiana will host a town hall on transgender violence next week. The meeting is 3 p.m.-5 p.m. Friday, March 10 at First Unitarian Universalist Church of New Orleans (2903 Jefferson Ave.). NOPD's LGBT liaison Sgt.​ Frank Robertson and At-Large City Councilmember Jason Williams also will be present. The violence in 2017 follows two of the deadliest years for transgender people in the U.S., including several deaths in Louisiana.

"This is a crucial moment in New Orleans and ​in ​the country itself," Transitions Louisiana Executive Director J. Mercedes Cardona told Gambit.

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Thursday, March 2, 2017

Books roundup: Six literary events in New Orleans in March

Posted By on Thu, Mar 2, 2017 at 2:55 PM

Alison Fraser performs in A Tennessee Williams Songbook: Only a Paper Moon at the 2013 Tennessee WIlilams Festival.
  • Alison Fraser performs in A Tennessee Williams Songbook: Only a Paper Moon at the 2013 Tennessee WIlilams Festival.

Spring is a busy time for book lovers in New Orleans: a flurry of fests, book sales and appearances by arts and letters types round out the calendar. Fortunately, no one in her right mind gives up reading for Lent.

Here's a few of our picks for literary activities this month.

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Sunday, January 29, 2017

Louis C.K., 'alternative facts,' a market for Marigny and other stories you may have missed this week

Posted By on Sun, Jan 29, 2017 at 9:00 AM

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• FEST, FEST, FEST: The 2017 Jazz Fest lineup was announced. You people on Twitter had a few thoughts. And Aaron Neville is part of the just-announced French Quarter Fest lineup.

• COMING TO TOWN: Louis C.K. is coming to town this week for a couple of just-announced shows. The Pixies are coming later.

• LGBT NEWS: The LGBT Community Center is getting a new home. And a new eldercare group is launching a health care provider network for LGBT seniors.

• KRISPY KRUNCHY KING CAKE: Where you can eat king cake topped with crickets.

Lots more under the jump ...

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Friday, January 27, 2017

LGBT Community Center hosts reopening party Feb. 1

Posted By on Fri, Jan 27, 2017 at 5:19 PM

WIKIMEDIA COMMONS
  • WIKIMEDIA COMMONS

The LGBT Community Center of New Orleans (2727 S. Broad St.), the 24-year-old organization supporting the needs of local LGBT people, hosts a grand reopening party Feb. 1. District B Councilmember LaToya Cantrell leads a ribbon-cutting ceremony at 10 a.m. Wednesday immediately followed by a Champagne reception. Then there's a party at 7 p.m. with music and refreshments.

The day's events will highlight the group's new database of LGBT resources, including legal and medical contacts, and its renewed mission of "inclusion and community integration."

"We're proud of what we've accomplished, but know there is so much more to do," board president Sebastian Rey said in a statement. "With the community's support, [we will] build a stronger, more connected LGBT New Orleans."

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