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Q-notes. microfilm reel (Charlotte [N.C.]) 1986-current, April 26, 2003, Image 1

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Changing hearts, minds and South Carolina lows. 33 SINCE ±9BA WWW. q-NOTES. COM APRIL 2« Gay Men’s Heallli Summit 2003 May 7-11 Raleigh Paramount . Wear Red! BIGranSilencioy Marcha lesbica. Mexico 18 17 25 “Dragapella” with the Kinsey Sicks Q.POLL RESULTS: Be out. Be proud. Be you, above all We are a community coming of age. We are leaving closet doors ajar at least. We are leaving the footprints for others to follow ... to the home built for our growing, hungry, diverse family. We have abandoned politeness for passion and correctness for courage. We have found our voice and are standing behind our politics by stepping out in front. Demanding change. Taking charge. UbU celebrates the beauty of diversity; its chal lenge and its responsibility. We have learned through tragedy and now war, the urgency to mark time and be all we are to all who need us. “If I am not for myself, who will be for me? if 1 am only for myself, what am I? if not now, when?” — Sayings of the Fathers May 12.3. Uptown Charlotte . see ad on 14 charlotte Bride 2003 Activists ask for partner benefits for City of Charlotte Group wants partner benefits and extemded non-discrimi nation clause for all city workers by Leah D. Sepsenwol With all that has happened in the world, it is time to campaign for equality — real equality, real recog nition, tangible acceptance. Look around, bit by significant bit, people are taking chances and making inroads. Charlotte is emerging. Being fair Leaders of MeckPAC, the Mecklenburg Gay and Lesbian Political Action Committee, proposed extending health benefits to the domestic partners of Charlotte’s city workers! Such .a move would align Charlotte with a growing number of corporations offering those benefits. And simply, it is about equitable treatment. “It’s the right thing to do,” said Phil Wells, who is leading the MeckPAC effort. “The city needs to treat its gay and lesbian employees with the same dignity, respect and fairness as all other employees.” According to an article in the Charlotte Observer, Council member Nancy Carter agreed to push for the proposal, and requested the city manager study it and report back to her. Chapel Hill Durham and Carrboro include homosexual domestic partners in their health benefits coverage. Opponents worry loudly the change would “condone a sinful lifestyle.” Charlotte is not blazing any new trails here. More than 5000 business and almost 140 city governments offer benefits to same-sex partners. Among them: Comapss Group, Goodrich, Wachovia, Bank of America and Knight Ridden The benefits are extended in many instances to include unmarried het erosexual partners. For a complete list of companies, go online to the Human Rights Campaign website; Some City Council members want more information. Some don’t want to hear any more about it. Councilmen John Tabor and Don Lochman oppose the change. “1 think you should be married before you get that benefit,” Lochman said. “Otherwise, it can be abused very easily.” Add sexual orientation A less controversial request by MeckPAC asks the city to add “sexu al orientation” to its nondiscrimina tion clause used for hiring and pro moting. “It sounds harmless enough but 1 need to learn more about it,” said Lochman to the Observer. Lochman is a staunch conservative. MeckPAC has plans to approach see BENEFITS on 3 Duke LGBT offer DVD: Safe On Campus by Kelly Gilmer in; Dinner Unity/mag_ball_2003.htm DURHAM — Duke University’s Center for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Life has developed a DVD to assist other colleges and uni versities in creating an environment where sexual orientation and gender identity can be openly dis cussed. The DVD explains Duke’s SAFE on Campus program, which began in January 2001. Members of SAFE, which stands for Students, Administrators and Faculty for Equality, display “SAFE on Campus” logos in their home or office to show that they are accepting of all members of the university community regardless of sexual ori entation and that their space is safe to discuss LGBT issues. “Up until this point, there has been no resource like this,” said Kerry Poynter, program coordinator for the Center for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Life, which he said is one of two professionally run university centers in the Southeast. Poynter coordinates Duke’s SAFE program and has implemented similar programs at other universities. ’ “it’s a template of our program,” he said. “We think it works really well, and we want to share our education with others.” The DVD provides all the tools for starting and assessing a SAFE program, with lessons about training sessions and program improvement. The DVD offers customizable graphics, training man uals and detailed assessment results of Duke’s SAFE program. It also features 10 video scenarios — with Duke students and faculty as actors — for use during trainingings to inspire discussion about see SAFE on 3

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