On Wednesday, December 4, at 5:30 pm, a coalition of Iowa organizations will hold an educational panel on HIV to discuss the criminalization of HIV and AIDS in the state and the work to reform Iowa laws. The panel will be held at the new office location of the Project of Primary Health Care (formerly the AIDS Project of Central Iowa), located at 1200 University Avenue, Suite 210, in Des Moines.
What: HIV Educational Panel When: Wednesday, December 4, at 5:30 pm Where: The Project of Primary Health Care, 1200 University Avenue, Suite 210, Des Moines Who: Spokespeople from One Iowa, Community HIV & Hepatitis Advocates of Iowa Network (CHAIN), the Project of Primary Health Care, and the Iowa Department of Public Health RSVP requested. Click here to reserve your spot today.
The United States Supreme Court announced Tuesday it will hear arguments to decide if the government can force larger businesses to provide contraceptives to employees as part of new requirements in healthcare insurance.
The issue caught fire when radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh commented on Susan Fluke’s testimony before congress. The Georgetown student told lawmakers she knew of women who would have to go without birth control because they wouldn’t be able to afford it outside of a health insurance plan. When Limbaugh suggested Fluke was asking to be paid to have sex, it made headlines. But the legal decision on this case will actually come from the isles of Hobby Lobby. Owners of the popular craft and home décor company say paying for employees contraception violates their religious beliefs and they sued the government in a fight that’s now going to the Supreme Court.
Today, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear Hobby Lobby v. Sebelius, a case with far-reaching implications for employee rights, religious freedom, and women’s health. Hobby Lobby, a for-profit corporation with 559 stores that employs 22,000 people nationwide, asserts that the private religious views of its owners can be used to deny certain healthcare benefits to its employees.
The following is a statement from Donna Red Wing, Executive Director of One Iowa, the state’s leading lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender organization:
“Religious freedom is a foundation for American democracy and is a right we reserve for individuals and bona-fide religious institutions. Religious exemptions, however, are not something this nation grants to for-profit corporations. If corporations can impose the will of the owners on their employees regardless of the law, what would stop them from discriminating against employees on a strictly religious basis in all sorts of ways, from healthcare to workplace discrimination?
Four Iowa cities, including Des Moines, have received high marks for LGBT equality from a national civil rights organization.
The Human Rights Campaign, which considers itself the country’s largest LGBT civil rights organization, rated 291 cities as a part of its 2013 Municipal Equality Index on LGBT inclusion in municipal law.
Today, the U.S. Senate voted to reform its internal procedures to end the supermajority filibuster and allow simple yes or no votes on most executive and judicial nominees made by the president. This reform came after Senate conservatives waged an unprecedented level of obstruction against President Obama’s judicial and executive nominees. The Iowa Fair Courts Coalition supports this needed reform and Senator Tom Harkin with his vote to put the Senate back to work for the American people.
“The American public is tired of partisan shutdown and the politics of nullification,” said Sue Dinsdale, Executive Director of Iowa Citizen Action Network . “By reforming its internal rules, the Senate will finally return to its constitutional role: advice and consent; not obstruct and delay.”
Donna Red Wing, Executive Director of One Iowa added, “A fully-staffed federal bench matters. We hope that this important reform represents a renewed focus on filling the many vacant seats on our federal courts that make rulings on important issues—from LGBT equality to women’s health to workers’ rights—that matter to all Americans.”
The transgender community and allies in Des Moines will gather tonight to remember gender non-conforming individuals who have been killed in the past year.
The annual Transgender Day of Remembrance began in 1998, and is marked with vigils around the county.
One Iowa, the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender civil rights group, and Transformations, the Des Moines transgender support group, have organized the Des Moines gathering, which will be held today at 5:30 p.m. on the west steps of the Capitol building.
Wednesday, November 20, marks Transgender Day of Remembrance, a day to remember transgender and gender non-comforming individuals who have been killed as a result of transphobia, or the fear of transgender people. Gwendolyn Ann Smith, a transgender graphic designer, founded this national day of awareness in 1998. Since its inception, Transgender Day of Remembrance has been held annually on November 20 and slowly evolved into a worldwide phenomenon, recognized in over 185 American cities and more than 20 countries.
This year in Des Moines, the transgender community and its allies will come together to recognize those we have lost in the past year. One Iowa, the state’s leading transgender, lesbian, gay and bisexual organization, and community organizer Sophia Stone, who leads the Des Moines transgender support group called Transformations, will hold a vigil on the west steps of the Capitol building. The names of transgender people who have lost their lives in the past year will be read aloud. Brief remarks will also be made by community members.
What: Transgender Day of Remembrance When: Wednesday, November 20, 5:30 – 6:30 pm Where: West steps of the Capitol building RSVP:http://bit.ly/HHBA94