Category: Info

Information and updates about programs and projects at the Coalition

Hempfield Trans Athlete’s Rights Protest Reportback

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition

July 14, 2021

support trans students

On Tuesday, July 13, over 300 people from the Lancaster community gathered outside Hempfield High School to support transgender students desiring to participate in high school athletics. The school board was meeting to hear from district residents and presumably decide the issue. Currently, the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association relegates the decision regarding transgender athlete participation to local high school principals.  

After hearing from 80 speakers the Board ultimately decided to hire a law firm to assist in establishing a school district policy on the matter. The Independence Law Center, which  “works to preserve religious liberty, promote marriage and the family, and protect human life,” was nominated and approved. This is a conservative Christian group hired with tax dollars without due process of bidding. It seemed evident to those in attendance that this motion to hire this particular religious law firm to establish policy was pre-planned. A conservative religious group should not be making policy for a public high school. The school board, as a publicly elected entity should make decisions based on facts and best practice, not religious based beliefs which endanger the lives and exclude others who don’t share their faith. 

Hempfield parent Jamie Beth Cohen, who has been involved in school and college sports her entire life, wrote to the board to urge them not to ban trans athletes from competing:

The suicide statistics for LGBTQIA+ students are chilling, and make no mistake, bans like the one Hempfield may be considering contribute to the alienation of students that in turn can contribute to suicidal ideation and action. I urge you to follow the facts and the science.

I say this with respect for all athletes at all levels of play: Sports are important AND the lives of our most vulnerable students are more important. Make no mistake, this is a life and death matter. And I can’t sit back and watch as trans athletes are excluded from the life-giving and life-affirming benefits of playing sports with their peers.

There are no pre-determined criteria for the way women’s bodies must be — even cisgender people can have hormone levels outside the range considered typical for their assigned sex, or could be intersex. The reality of these discriminatory bans has no basis in science and serves only to invite gender policing which could subject any woman to invasive tests or questions about personal medical information. They exist only to exclude trans people, and reinforce the idea that trans individuals are to be shunned in society.

Coach and sports policy expert Helen Caroll noted in a 2020 declaration, “For the past nine years, transgender athletes have been able to compete on teams at NCAA member collegiates and universities consistent with their gender identity like all other student-athletes with no disruption to women’s collegiate sports.”

Representatives from Lancaster Stands Up, The ACLU, YWCA, and Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition are continuing to work together to ensure that trans students are heard and supported, and that uninformed, phobic, and discriminatory policies will be challenged.

Please join us virtually on Sunday, July 18th at 8pm, as we process the multitude of emotions, events, and harm done this week as we fight for the humanity of our transgender/non-binary community members. This will be a private space to share thoughts and feelings, as well as resources for our continued work towards collective liberation. Pre-registration is required. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Click here to register.

About Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition
At Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition, we are committed to building a supportive and enriching community abundant in opportunities for LGBTQIA+ individuals and those with a stake in creating a more inclusive Lancaster County. For more information, visit https://www.lgbtlancaster.org/

Last Weekend of Pride Month Events

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition

June 23, 2021

Saturday, June 26: Cure Dispensary Pride Day

Access to affirming healthcare is a vital aspect of Queer life. As with many marginalized groups, the demand for healthcare exists but Queer individuals struggle to navigate medical institutions which don’t understand or cater to our unique experience.

That’s why we’re excited to be working with Cure Dispensary for their Pride Day celebrations! From noon to 7 PM, swing by for music, free home STI test kits, discounts, and pride swag! Bring a sanitation product for a $5 discount on your order! All customers must have a medical marijuana card to enter the dispensary.

Accepted sanitation items are:

  • Deodorant
  • Tampons
  • Pads
  • Toothpaste
  • Toothbrushes
  • Toilet Paper
  • Baby Diapers (sizes 4-6)
  • Laundry Detergent
  • Shampoo/Conditioner
  • Body Wash
  • Paper Towels
  • Baby Wipes
  • Cleaning Supplies

Sunday, June 27: Salsa & MerenGay

Join us on Sunday between 8AM and 5PM at McCaskey High School for Salsa & MerenGay: an LGBTQ+ inclusive salsa lesson in partnership with Patients R Waiting and Union Community Care’s Health Equity NOW initiative! DJ Ecliptic will be performing from 2-5PM, and we’ll be handing out free home STI test kits for National HIV Testing Day.

Afterward, swing by High Fever’s pride-themed party at Marion Court from 2-7PM to catch a drag show, food and drinks, and a free home STI test kit. Admission is $10.

Vote Yes to Equality!

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition

June 21, 2021

Protect the LGBTQ+ Community from discrimination

Happy Pride! We’re celebrating by staying focused on passing federal nondiscrimination protections like the ones outlined in the Equality Act. Because what better way to commemorate Pride than by fully protecting all Americans from discrimination?

Pride month is our biggest opportunity yet to engage the LGBTQ community and allies in helping to get this critical legislation passed, which is why we’re asking you to contact your Senators and tell them to VOTE YES TO EQUALITY! 

The urgency here is real. Discrimination is still commonplace for LGBTQ Americans, and in 29 states, LGBTQ people are at risk of being refused housing or denied services simply because of who they are. Full federal nondiscrimination protections like the ones outlined in the Equality Act would ensure that all Americans can live, work, and access public spaces free from discrimination, no matter what state they call home.

Take action today by contacting your Senators by email or phone.  It’s so easy – just a few clicks will get it done.  You can even record a 30-second video!  Simply follow the prompts.

Community Spotlight: Niambi Stanley

Ellie Cochran

May 30, 2021

A photograph of Vogue icon Niambi Stanley

Niambi E Stanley AKA Niambi Prodigy (she/her) is a ballroom icon and historian, entrepreneur, trans activist, and mental wellness advocate. A prominent member of the Lancaster’s drag community, Niambi will be organizing and performing in the Coalition’s SHOTS Pride Month vaccination drive with DJ VJPumpDaBeat!

With humble beginnings in the underground Philadelphia ballroom scene, Niambi E Stanley AKA Niambi Ebony Prodigy (she/her) has competed as a ballroom voguer for over 25 years—since 14 years old. In that time, she has won numerous trophies, accolades, and awards for her dedication, excellence, and contributions to the art of vogue.

In 2017, Niambi began a plethora of small businesses ranging from graphic design to apparel to television programming—but she didn’t stop there. Niambi realized her true purpose was to be of service to her community through activism and advocacy for the most marginalized and discriminated against; her own community of Black Trans Women.

In recent years Black Trans Women have been increasingly denied human rights, and are regularly victims of hate crimes, violence, and murders across the country. Niambi has made it her mission to provide the most marginalized communities proper resources and skills necessary to survive and defend against violence by hosting a weekly live Facebook show titled TransTalkTuesday. TransTalkTuesday provides education, insight, awareness, news, and resources impacting the Trans community and beyond.

Niambi will be performing at the Coalition’s upcoming vaccination event, SHOTS: Vogue, Vaccines, and Visibility, on June 12 at Union Community Care. See you there!

To learn more about Niambi, her work, or to purchase her products or services, visit iammissniambi.com.

Summer 2021 Volunteer Opportunities

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition

May 28, 2021

We’re looking for volunteers to help staff our Pride month events, deliver items to people in need, provide affirming transportation to vulnerable community members, or help to lead our groups!

Interested in getting more involved in the local Queer community? Fill out our availability and interest form!

Pride Month 2021 Events

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition

May 28, 2021

Pride Month 2021

Pride Month is here, and after being in lockdown for a year the Coalition has plenty of events lined up to celebrate!   

June 5 The Pride Kick Off Comedy Show, hosted by Audrie Marsh, will be held at Zoetropolis at 8 p.m. Tickets are $15.

June 7-30 The Pennsylvania College of Art and Design is hosting a CORE Gallery called “What Does PRIDE Mean To You?” which will feature several works of art from LGBT artists attending the college. The gallery will be fully virtual and run from June 7 to 30.

June 8 Zoetropolis Cinema Stillhouse is showing a surprise LGBTQ+ movie every Tuesday at 6 p.m. for pride month. Films will be followed up with a group discussion. The film showings are free, but the theater requests a suggested donation of $10.

June 12, 8AM – 5PM SHOTS: Vogue, Vaccines, & Visibility
The Coalition, in partnership with Patients R Waiting and Union Community Care’s Health Equity NOW initiative, is hosting a Moderna vaccine clinic at Union Community Care with LGBTQ+ affirming vendors and pride swag! DJ Salinger will be performing from 2-5PM, and ballroom legend Niambi Prodigy will make an unprecedented comeback after leaving the ballroom scene from 3-5PM.

June 15 Zoetropolis Cinema Stillhouse is showing a surprise LGBTQ+ movie every Tuesday at 6 p.m. for pride month. Films will be followed up with a group discussion. The film showings are free, but the theater requests a suggested donation of $10.

June 20 Lancaster Pride Drag Pageant Brunch
Lancaster Pride is hosting a drag pageant brunch to celebrate drag artists in the area and raise money for Lancaster’s upcoming fall pride celebration. The brunch will feature the reigning drag queen and king of Lancaster, Nevaeha Le’Vixenn and Bryce Culver, who will crown 2021’s new drag king and queen. Tellus360 is hosting the brunch, which costs $58 a person, and will run from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. This event is only available for people 21 years and older.

June 22 Zoetropolis Cinema Stillhouse is showing a surprise LGBTQ+ movie every Tuesday at 6 p.m. for pride month. Films will be followed up with a group discussion. The film showings are free, but the theater requests a suggested donation of $10.

June 26, 12PM – 7PM Cure Dispensary Pride Day!
The Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition partnered with Cure Pennsylvania, a medical marijuana dispensary at 1866 Fruitville Pike in Manheim Township, for an event from noon to 7 p.m. featuring a live DJ, discounts and pride swag. Those who bring in a sanitation product will get a $5 discount on their order. All customers must have a medical marijuana card to enter the dispensary.

June 27, 8AM – 5PM Salsa y MerenGay Vaccination Clinic
In partnership with Patients R Waiting and Union Community Care’s Health Equity NOW initiative, join us at McCaskey High School for an LGBTQ+ inclusive salsa lesson at 2PM! DJ Ecliptic will also be performing from 2-5PM.

Double Vaccination Party
The Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition will host a double vaccination party from 5 p.m. to midnight at Spring House Brewing Company, at 209 Hazel St. in downtown Lancaster.

High Fever Party
High Fever will host a pride-themed party at Marion Court, at 7 E. Marion St. in downtown Lancaster. The party will go from 2 to 7 p.m. and will have a DJ, a drag show, drinks and food. Admission is $10.

June 29 Zoetropolis Cinema Stillhouse is showing a surprise LGBTQ+ movie every Tuesday at 6 p.m. for pride month. Films will be followed up with a group discussion. The film showings are free, but the theater requests a suggested donation of $10.

The Month of June Rainbow Gayke Jars!
Goody Jars and The Fitness Alchemist are selling Rainbow “Gayke” jars! For every jar sold during Pride Month, a percentage will go the the Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition. $6 for an 8oz jar. Get in touch via email or Facebook.

Be sure to check back on this page for updates and links!

“Can’t Cancel Pride” Virtual Event June 4th

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition

May 28, 2021

CenterLink, a national coalition of LGBTQ+ centers, is hosting a virtual event to celebrate Pride Month!

P&G and iHeartMedia are sponsoring the return of “Can’t Cancel Pride,” a virtual relief benefit for the LGBTQ+ communities featuring performances from Demi Lovato, P!NK, Lil Nas X, Bebe Rexha, Brothers Osborne, Busy Phillips, Gus Kenworthy, Hayley Kiyoko, Jennifer Hudson, JoJo Siwa, Marshmello, MJ Rodriguez, Nina West, Ricky Martin, Regard, Troye Sivan, Tate McRae, and more. 

The second annual event will celebrate Pride Month and will focus on intersectionality, or the overlap of identities, social positions, and social policies, along with the issues that continue to impact the LGBTQ+ community in 2021, including the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

“Can’t Cancel Pride” will be held Friday, June 4 at 9 pm EST, with the concert available on-demand through June 30. Full details and the performance line-up will be available in the coming days. 

To learn more, visit cantcancelpride.lgbtcenters.org.

A Place to Call Home

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition

May 17, 2021

There is a housing crisis in Lancaster County and extremely limited LGBTQ+ affirming housing. Over 70% of our Pandemic Relief Emergency Fund recipients reported housing and rental assistance as their primary need. Currently there are no fully affirming shelters in Lancaster County and bed availability is scarce.

On February 1, 2021, the HEART Program opened its 6-month pilot low-cost housing location, offering individuals sheltering in unaffirming environments a chance to live in a supportive home. The Coalition helps subsidize rent according to each person’s individual needs and works with community partners to offer enrichment training, such as budgeting, health resources, and other life skills.

HEART also offers a warm-handoff service to housing and medical services to provide emotional support for program participants. To further ensure resource providers are capable of providing culturally competent services, we provide cultural competency training to community stakeholders and potential partners around serving the LGBTQ+ population.

Once we have hired a Director of Programming to manage the program and volunteers, HEART will expand to work with persons experiencing homelessness on the streets to help them access safe and inclusive housing, and mitigate their vulnerability to COVID-19 by providing PPE, hand sanitizer and resources.

At this time, we are unable to offer emergency crisis shelter. Applicants must have some form of income and have the ability to manage their general needs and safety. If you are in need of immediate shelter call crisis intervention at (717) 394-2631 or 211.

Apply for housing » a case manager will contact you for an intake within 48 hours.
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