Tag: Info

Celebrate the Holigays With Us, and Get Your Vax as a Plus!

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition

December 16, 2022

Holidays are complex for the LGBTQ+ community. To address the need for community around the holidays, AND offset the increased risk of gaythering, we are partnering with Union Community Care on two COVID booster/flu Vaccination clinics placed intentionally before the Winter holidays before New Years Eve celebrations!

Nurse Practitioner Erica Lehman will be donating her time to run the clinic and Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition will use grant funding from Union Community Care to host “Holigay” parties with performances and DJs.

Clinics will be held on the next two upcoming Wednesdays; December 21 and December 28, from 5PM to 8PM at the Loop, 117 E Chestnut Street, Lancaster PA 17602.

To sign up, please call Union Community Care at (717) 299-6371

“As a trauma therapist I am increasingly concerned about the constant confusion and quite frankly, the insanity of our current culture.

Rules around keeping people safe from COVID or the variants flying around are arbitrary at best and definitely not rooted in protecting vulnerable, marginalized communities.

We want to find ways to be proactive and protect our community members while tending to our other great need: community support.”

K. Foley (she/they), Executive Director

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition Receives $25k Safety & Security Grant from the State of Pennsylvania

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition

December 16, 2022

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition is extremely thankful to the State of Pennsylvania’s PCCD’s Nonprofit Security Fund Grant Program for awarding us a $25,000 grant to improve the safety and security of The Loop, our HEART Program housing locations, and our LGBTQ+ Health Clinic opening in early 2023.

We are a grassroots organization that works to create a safe and welcoming environment for LGBTQ+ people in Lancaster County. We do this by providing education, advocacy, and support to our community and to local businesses and organizations looking to make a positive impact.

“We live in a time of increased targeted violence against LGBTQ+ individuals and families, as well as focused attacks on our basic rights. Our headquarters is located in the heart of Lancaster City. The concern for the safety of our staff and volunteers has slowed our progress with initiatives and programming, but this grant will give us the ability to swiftly implement a person-centered security model that is rooted in working to ensure that all intersections of our community feel welcomed and protected.

We commit to making choices that shift how security is often used in a way that can feel threatening to targeted communities. The biggest failure in that approach is that it is often used to intimidate and justify discrimination.

We will use innovative methods that continue to involve input from our community. And just like equity is a process and not a destination, we will continue to reevaluate our security protocols so that they are not only protective, but inclusive and welcoming to all.”

K. Foley (she/they), Executive Director

Scholarship for Students Living with HIV/AIDS

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition

December 7, 2022

The HIV League Scholarship is the only national scholarship for students living with HIV. We’re so excited to boost the news that they have just announced that they are accepting applications for the 2023 round of scholarship applications until January 31st at 11:59PM Eastern Time.

The criteria to apply for this ninth round of scholarship funding are as follows:

  • You are living with HIV/AIDS
  • You will be enrolled in an institution of higher education as a full-time or part-time student for at least one year beginning with the Fall 2023 semester
  • You are going to an institution of higher education in the United States or a United States territory. American citizenship is not a requirement

We only have one type of scholarship this year, and it is listed below:

  • 1 year $3,500 scholarship for full-time and part-time students

Please find all of the materials you will need to apply at www.hivleague.orgwww.hivleague.org/scholarship, or at the application link HERE

If you have any questions, please call the HIV League at 828-467-4025.

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition to Participate in the 2022 Extra Give

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition

November 15, 2022

Give Extra to Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition, November 18 2022

Give Extra to Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition on November 18th

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition will participate in the 2022 Extra Give on Friday, November 18th! Make sure to Give Extra to Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition throughout the day to help support our continued efforts to create a truly equitable Lancaster County, and to develop The Loop; our new hub for safety and community in Downtown Lancaster.

We’re planning to celebrate four years of Extra Give participation with an event-packed day full of celebration and opportunities to see the impact of your donations. Here’s what we’re planning throughout the day:

7-9AM: Morning Rush Hour at Square One
Start off the morning right with coffee, snacks, and even a selection of beans at Square One Coffee Co. 10% of proceeds will go to Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition

9AM-2PM: Information & Swag Table at Clipper Stadium
Hang out with our very own Program Coordinator Glitch SteelHeart and learn about the Coalition’s services, programming, and training opportunities for individuals, organizations, and more! Score some swag while you’re there to represent our local Queer community!

6-11PM: Extra Give Gaming Livestream on Our YouTube Channel
Join us online starting at 6PM for hours of Queer gaming fun with several different hosts! We’ll start off with classic and modern PC, PSX, and PS2 games until 8PM, then power on our imaginations for a live tabletop gaming experience from our LGBT RPG group! Keep an eye out for the possibility of special prizes and shout-outs on stream!

7-11PM: Community Celebration & Raffle at The Loop
RSVP now to celebrate another year of progress and giving in our community party at The Loop! Enjoy live music from DJ GiGi, and stick around ’til the end of the night to join in on a raffle ticket fundraiser for a unique piece of artwork by Lancaster artist Jeff Sibbett!

We’re so excited to see you there, and to thank you for everything you’ve helped to make possible. Make sure to Give Extra to Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition on November 18th to support community, authenticity, and love!

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition Marks Trans Day of Remembrance (TDOR)

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition

November 14, 2022

Every year on or around the 20th of November trans people worldwide gather for Transgender Day of Remembrance to remember those we have lost to violence in the past year.

Year over year, the average number of trans deaths is on the rise. Since October 2021, at least 315 trans individuals have died due to murder or suicide. This figure does not include closeted individuals, those whose trans identity was erased in their obituaries, and many more who we must honor and remember.

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition will host a digital installation piece honoring the names, identities, and histories of trans community members we’ve lost, which will be installed in our courtyard at The Loop; 117 E Chestnut Street. Join us on November 20th to ensure that those we have lost will not be forgotten.

A Brief History of PRIDE

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition

June 3, 2022

Stonewall Inn (Source: Diana Davies/ New York Public Library)

The Stonewall Riots, also called the Stonewall Uprising, began in the early hours of June 28, 1969 when New York City police raided the Stonewall Inn, a gay club located in Greenwich Village in New York City. The raid sparked a riot among bar patrons and neighborhood residents as police roughly hauled employees and patrons out of the bar, leading to six days of protests and violent clashes with law enforcement outside the bar on Christopher Street, in neighboring streets and in nearby Christopher Park. The Stonewall Riots served as a catalyst for the gay rights movement in the United States and around the world.

[…]

Armed with a warrant, police officers entered the club [Stonewall Inn], roughed up patrons, and, finding bootlegged alcohol, arrested 13 people, including employees and people violating the state’s gender-appropriate clothing statute (female officers would take suspected cross-dressing patrons into the bathroom to check their sex).

History.com – Stonewall Riots
Christopher Street Liberation Day (Source: Leonard Fink)

On the one-year anniversary of the riots on June 28, 1970, thousands of people marched in the streets of Manhattan from the Stonewall Inn to Central Park in what was then called “Christopher Street Liberation Day,” America’s first gay pride parade. The parade’s official chant was: “Say it loud, gay is proud.”

History.com – Stonewall Riots

Learn more: https://www.history.com/topics/gay-rights/the-stonewall-riots


Marsha P. Johnson (Source: Ron Johnson/Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture)

Marsha P. Johnson, a self-identified drag queen and a prominent gay liberation activist, is one of the most well-known participants in the Stonewall uprising. After Stonewall, her activism continued—she joined the Gay Liberation Front, ACT UP, and cofounded the Street Transvestite Action Revolutionaries (STAR) with Sylvia Rivera. (Johnson also referred to herself as a “transvestite,” and never used “transgender” to describe her gender identity, since the term was popularized after her death in 1992.)

Smithsonian Institute – Marsha Johnson, Sylvia Rivera, and the history of Pride Month
Sylvia Rivera with Christina Hayworth and Julia Murray (Source: Luis Carle/National Portrait Gallery)

Rivera was also involved in Stonewall, and the experience led her to campaign with the Gay Activist Alliance (GAA) for a city nondiscrimination law. But Rivera, who was a transgender woman and Latina, faced discrimination from established gay rights organizations like the GAA that were predominantly led by white men. The GAA’s leadership often rejected the role transgender people—many of them people of color—played in Stonewall.

Smithsonian Institute – Marsha Johnson, Sylvia Rivera, and the history of Pride Month

Learn more: https://www.si.edu/stories/marsha-johnson-sylvia-rivera-and-history-pride-month


Steps LGBTQ+ Workers Can Take if They’re Experiencing Discrimination in the Workplace

Lancaster LGBTQ+ Coalition

October 29, 2021

Workplace harassment

State and federal legislation prohibits any form of workplace discrimination on the basis of gender, sexual identity or sexual preference. If you identify as LGBTQ+, and have experienced any form of discrimination or harassment against you because of your status as a LGBTQ+ individual at work then you have the right to file a complaint with a state or federal anti discrimination body. Your employer cannot retaliate against you if you decide to take your complaint to a government anti discrimination agency for investigation or file a lawsuit against your employer.

You may have your complaint resolved or receive financial compensation if your complaint of a breach of anti discrimination legislation is upheld.

How LGBTQ+ Workers Face Discrimination in the Workplace

LGBTQ+ employees may face various forms of discrimination or harassment while at work. The acts against them may be from a co-worker, a supervisor, manager or the employer. Harassment because of one’s sexual or gender identity is commonplace and may be in the form of taunts, insults, physical or sexual threats or assault. Intimidation may be verbal, or in the form of written comments made through a social media forum, by text messaging, email, notes or letters.

Direct or indirect acts of discrimination experienced by LGBTQ+ workers may include any one or a combination of the following:

Steps When Filing a Claim for Discrimination as a LGBTQ+ Employee

Before taking any action after experiencing discrimination or harassment, ensure you have proof, preferably documentary proof, or an audio recording of comments, insults, phone calls etc. Keep a note of dates, times, what happened, who was involved, whether there were credible witnesses, etc.

If you feel able to do so, file a letter of complaint with your supervisor, HR department or employer depending on your workplace, explaining what you have experienced. Keep a copy of correspondence and any response you obtain.

If your employer does not respond or fails to resolve your complaint, the next step is to file a complaint with either your state anti discrimination agency or department such as a Human Rights Commission, or the federal equivalent, the Equal Employment Opportunities Commission (EEOC). The EEOC will investigate complaints of discrimination within workplaces of 15 or more employees. The state of Pennsylvania with the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission will also cooperate with the EEOC on a work-share arrangement.

These agencies have a time limit within which you need to file your complaint, which could be 180 to 365 days from the date of the act of discrimination.

If investigators cannot resolve your complaint, then you will normally be given permission to take further legal action of your own. This means filing a lawsuit against your employer based on a breach of anti discrimination laws, such as the federal Title VII of the Civil Rights Act.

Compensation Possible if a LGBTQ+ Discrimination Claim is Upheld

You may receive financial compensation if your discrimination claim is upheld. You may also have your job reinstated or discrimination reversed. Penalties against your employer in the form of fines or even more serious charges (i.e. if there was a crime involved) may be imposed by the court.

Back pay could be paid out, as well as compensation for emotional or psychological distress caused by the acts of discrimination against you. In more serious cases where you have been the victim of particularly malicious behavior or acts, you may be awarded punitive damages.

Resources Via

  • https://www.eeoc.gov/statutes/title-vii-civil-rights-act-1964
  • https://employmentlawhelp.org/wrongful-termination/turned-down-sexual-orientation
  • https://employmentlawhelp.org/wrongful-termination/sexual-orientation
  • https://www.phrc.pa.gov/File-a-Compliant/Pages/How-to-File-a-Complaint.aspx

This post was contributed by Employment Law Help

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.

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.