We never thought that a landscaper booking website would publish a study about the horniest cities in the United States, but 2021 apparently had more surprises in store for us.
LawnStarter says it ranked the libido levels of 200 U.S. cities by “nine key indicators of sexual arousal,” including proportion of single residents, Google search interest in adult content, and sales of sex toys.
To measure the thirst of each metropolis, the researchers culled data from All Swingers Clubs, Eventbrite, Google Trends, Innerbody Research, Lovehoney, U.S. Census Bureau, and Yelp.
The results? The horniest cities in America, according to the survey, are:
Providence, Rhode Island
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Newark, New Jersey
Paradise, Nevada, has more sex shops and adult entertainment venues than any other city, according to LawnStarter, while Providence, Rhode Island, sells the most sex toys out of the cities surveyed. LawnStarter also notes that California and Florida cities dominate the top 10 in all nine metrics, crediting those states’ standout sex drives to “sand, sweat, skin, and sangria.”
More than half of LGBTQ adults in America say they have experienced violent threats, according to a study from The William Institute at the UCLA School of Law.
The study examined the similarities and differences across key subgroups of the LGBTQ community.
Fifty-two percent of respondents said that someone had threatened them with violence since they were age 18.
Among this group, 61 percent of transgender women said someone threatened them, compared to 49 percent of cisgender women and 52 percent of cisgender men.
In addition, 75 percent of respondents said someone verbally insulted or abused them. Thirty-nine percent said someone had thrown an object at them.
Forty-two percent of LGBTQ respondents said they were hit, beaten, physically attacked or sexually assaulted as adults, while 41 percent said they were robbed, had properly stolen or vandalized.
The survey also found high rates of bullying during childhood among the LGBTQ community. Sixty-seven percent of LBQ cisgender women, 75 percent of GBQ cis men and 70 percent of transgender people said they had been bullied often or sometimes before age 18.
The survey also examined some health outcomes of the LGBTQ community. For example, 26 percent of transgender people said their health was fair or poor, compared to 24 percent of cisgender women and 14 percent of cisgender men.
Meanwhile, 42 percent of transgender people reported lifetime suicide attempts, compared to 32 percent of cisgender women and 22 percent of cisgender men.
The data for the study was pulled from a combination of two studies, one of which was a national probability sample of sexual minority (LGBQ) individuals who were not transgender and another of transgender adults. The study does not list a margin of sampling error.
A gay man who came out aged 90 has offered powerful words of advice to LGBT+ people who are still in the closet.
Kenneth Felts captured the hearts of queer people across the world in 2020 when he shared his story, proving that it’s never too late to come out.
Felts, who is from Colorado, knew he was gay when he was just 12 years old – but he pushed his feelings down and married a woman, not believing that living his truth was an option.
His coming out last year was ultimately a positive experience that allowed him to live his life openly and authentically.
Speaking directly to queer people who are still in the closet, Kenneth Felts told CBS New York: “You’ll be very surprised about the response.”
He continued: “The world is full of love, and you’re entitled to some of it, and people are going to give it to you if you take the chance, if you come out and say ‘here I am.’”
Kenneth Felts went on to reflect on his marriage to a woman, which he admitted “was not a good one”. He spent the entire marriage trying to appear as straight as he possibly could.
“It was just constant alertness,” Felt said. “I was being very careful and dressing very conservatively all the time because I never wanted people to know that I was gay. I didn’t want to be outed because I could lose custody of my daughter.”
It was ultimately a cancer diagnosis that spurred Felts on to start writing his memoirs, which helped Phillip swim back into focus.
He was Felts’ first love, and the pair had a vibrant, loving relationship before he left to marry a woman.
Tragically, he learned upon his coming out last year that Phillip had since died, meaning the men never got to reunite.
Despite the pain that came with that revelation, Kenneth Felts is still glad he came out when he did. Doing so has allowed him a greater freedom in his personal life.
“It was a huge experience of freedom. I wasn’t looking over my shoulder worried about who’s wondering if I’m gay or not,” he said.
Sadly, Felts decision to come out as gay during the coronavirus pandemic has meant that he can’t attend Pride marches and take a more active role in the LGBT+ community – however, he hasn’t let that stop him from celebrating his identity.
His Facebook page shows numerous images of him wearing a rainbow coloured hoodie, and he has raised funds for LGBT+ causes in the year since he came out.
Mumsnet users are encouraging teachers to out trans pupils to their parents, saying that children are being “harmed” by school staff who protect their privacy.
The Mumsnet discussion began with a 3 July post by “Libby55”, who says they work in a school: “Advice: schools socially transitioning children without parental knowledge or consent.” It’s had more than 400 responses.
In the post, Libby55 says pupils at the school they work in have changed their names and pronouns without telling their parents. Libby55 claims that teachers not telling parents this information is a “safeguarding issue” that is “harming children”.
“I’m looking for an organisation that specifically campaigns against schools harming children in this way,” Libby55 says. “I have to do something: I can see children being harmed.”
They then ask: “If any of you know of a teacher’s group that is lobbying against the practice of socially transitioning children without parents’ knowledge or consent, please let me know. I would like to get involved.”
In the hundreds of responses that follow, Mumsnet users says it is “outrageous” and “sinister” that schools would protect pupil’s privacy, and suggest “leaking” the information about trans pupils on social media.
Several suggested that Libby55 contact anti-trans groups Safe Schools Alliance (SSA) or Transgender Trend, while others commended them for “protecting children from the falsehood that they are the opposite sex”.
Confirming they would contact SSA, Libby55 thanked Mumsnet users for their help and claimed that “for the majority of children” using their chosen name and pronouns “brings about a steep downhill decline in their mental health”.
One study of young trans people found that a trans person who is regularly called their chosen name has “a 29 per cent decrease in suicidal ideation, and a 56 per cent decrease in suicidal behaviour”.
Some Mumsnet users disagreed with Libby55, and pointed out that outing trans pupils to their parents would be harmful and could put them at risk.
“Um, what does the child have to say about you doing this?” one Mumsnet user wrote. “You can’t just be giving this kind of information to their parents without their knowledge. That is the whole point of safe-guarding. You are putting this child in danger right now.”
Sabah Choudrey, joint head of youth work at national trans charity Gendered Intelligence, told PinkNews that sometimes “school is the safest place for a young person to explore who they are”.
“‘Outing’ trans youth to their parents against their will may put them at risk of harm and isolation from a supported environment and trusted people,” Choudrey said.
“There are many reasons why families wouldn’t understand in the first instance, but there is support available for families too. But not all families are supportive or understanding of young people having space to explore their identity, and a small minority will unfortunately never come to be supportive or understanding of their child’s identity or exploration.
“Schools have a duty to safeguard all youth, because every young person deserves the right to choose who they are and the right to safely express themselves.”
What is outing?
Outing is the act of disclosing an LGBT+ person’s gender identity or sexual orientation without their consent, which can breach their privacy and put them at risk of violence or abuse.
Young trans people in the UK are particularly at risk, with research from LGBT+ charity Stonewall finding that more than four in five young trans people have been called names or verbally abused, while three in five have experienced threats or intimidation and more than a third have been physically assaulted.
A person’s trans status is private, regardless of their age. According toStonewall, schools should not share information that could reveal a pupil’s trans status to others, including their parents, except when there is a safeguarding risk or when the young person has given their permission for information to be shared.
Trans students’ right to privacy
In the US, it’s illegal for a teacher to share a student’s LGBT+ identity with their parents or other school staff, because it’s a violation of the student’s privacy and “can open an LGBT+ child to hostility, rejection, and even violence from their parents”, according to civil rights group ACLU.
Trans adults with legal recognition of their gender have similar protection in the UK, where officials who disclose someone’s trans status without consent would be breaking the law in most circumstances.
While trans under 18’s do not have access to legal gender recognition, they are still protected from discrimination based on their social transition under the Equality Act 2010. This means teachers and school staff should use a pupils chosen name and pronouns – not to do so because they have changed gender could constitute direct gender reassignment discrimination, according to guidance from the Equality and Human Rights Commission.
And young trans people have a right to privacy under the Human Rights Act, just like all young people.
Justine Roberts, Mumsnet founder, told PinkNewst: “We’ve had a careful look at the discussion. It’s clear that the person who started it is mindful of their confidentiality obligations and does not intend to ‘out’ any children. They clearly state, ‘I wouldn’t recommend telling the parents. Even if we believe that the school isn’t following safeguarding procedures, we still need to go through the proper channels.’
“This is a discussion in which a teacher is asking for signposts to further information, and does not in any way advocate breaching the confidence of children under their care.”
Gendered Intelligence runs support groups for young trans people and their families. You can find more information here.
From the first U.S. Supreme Court ruling to address homosexuality to the first bisexual “Bachelorette,” here are 10 historic LGBTQ milestones from around the world.
First out gay person elected to office in the U.S.
Three years before Harvey Milk was elected to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, out lesbian Kathy Kozachenko was voted onto the Ann Arbor City Council in Michigan on April 2, 1974.
Kozachenko was just 21 and a student at the University of Michigan, a hotbed of anti-war protests and activism supporting racial justice, women’s rights and other causes.
Her sexual orientation didn’t seem to be an issue with voters, and “gay liberation was not a major issue in the campaign,” Kozachenko said in her victory speech, Bloomberg reported.
“This year we talked about rent control. We talked about the city’s budget. We talked about police priorities, and we had a record of action to run on,” she said at the time.
Kozachenko only served one two-year term and eventually moved to Pittsburgh, where she remained involved in gay activism and met her longtime partner, MaryAnn Geiger.
“I am so proud of all the activists that came after me,” Kozachenko told NBC News last year. “The people that pushed and pushed and pushed for gay marriage, the transgender people that have pushed for their rights … I’m grateful for the chance that I was able to play a small part in this.”
First male-male kiss in a Hollywood movie
William A. Wellman’s silent film “Wings,” the first movie to win the Academy Award for best picture, follows Jack (Charles Rogers) and David (Richard Arlen) as they enlist in the Army Air Service during World War I and bond during basic training before being shipped off to France.
While they’re ostensibly romantic rivals for “it girl” Clara Bow, neither “shows as much love for her … as they do for each other,” queer writer Kevin Sessums wrote, according to the LGBT History Project blog.
In the pre-Hays Code film’s climax, Jack accidentally shoots down David, who has commandeered a German biplane. Running to his dying friend’s side, Jack takes David in his arms and begs forgiveness. As the camera zooms in, the two stroke each other’s hair tenderly and Jack declares, “You know there is nothing in the world that means so much to me as your friendship.”
The men share a lingering closed-lip kiss before Jack takes his final breath.
“While the relationship is referred to repeatedly as a friendship, the acting and directing of the film make it obvious that the men’s feelings were romantic,” wrote culture critic and curator Francesca Seravalle. “A swell of romantic string instruments plays in the background as Jack mourns over Dave’s still body. The directing choices made by Wellman humanized both characters and allowed the audience to experience the tragedy without exploiting the perceived exoticness of a relationship between two men.”
One, Inc. v. Olesen
First U.S. Supreme Court ruling to address homosexuality
Founded in 1952, ONE, Inc. was one of the earliest gay rights organizations in the United States and the first to have its own offices.
An accompanying magazine, One Magazine, started publication in 1953 — selling through subscriptions and at Los Angeles newsstands — and is considered the first mass-produced gay publication in America.
In October 1954, L.A. Postmaster Otto K. Olesen refused to deliver the magazine, declaring it “obscene, lewd, lascivious and filthy.” ONE sued but lost the case and a subsequent appeal — a panel of federal judges declared “Sappho Remembered,” a lesbian love story that ran in one issue, “nothing more than cheap pornography calculated to promote lesbianism.”
Founding editors Dale Jennings and Don Slater appealed all the way to the Supreme Court, which, surprisingly, agreed to hear their case.
On Jan. 13, 1958, without even hearing oral arguments, the justices issued a terse, one-line ruling reversing the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals decision and affirming that the mere subject of homosexuality was not obscene.
In a Washington Post op-ed in 2014, Brookings Institution fellow Jonathan Rauch called One, Inc. v Olesen “the seminal gay rights case in America — the one that extended First Amendment protection to gay-related speech.”
Marcia Kadish & Tanya McCloskey
First same-sex couple legally married in the United States
On Nov. 18, 2003, Massachusetts became the first state to recognize same-sex marriage when, in Goodridge v. Department of Public Health, the state Supreme Court ruled it could not “deny the protections, benefits, and obligations conferred by civil marriage to two individuals of the same sex who wish to marry.”
“Recognizing the right of an individual to marry a person of the same sex will not diminish the validity or dignity of opposite-sex marriage,” wrote Chief Justice Margaret Marshall, “any more than recognizing the right of an individual to marry a person of a different race devalues the marriage of a person who marries someone of her own race.”
The first licenses were issued on May 17, 2004, and McCloskey and Kadish, who had already been together nearly 20 years at that point, picked theirs up a few minutes after midnight. With a waiver that allowed them to skip the traditional three-day waiting period, the women exchanged vows later that morning at Cambridge City Hall.
One day before the first Christopher Street Liberation Day march in New York, the Windy City hosted the world’s first Pride march on June 27, 1970 — albeit a much smaller one than the Big Apple’s. The half-mile procession officially went from Washington Square Park to the Water Tower at the bustling intersection of Chicago and Michigan avenues, but many participants continued down to the Civic Center plaza (now Daley Plaza).
Once there, about 150 people listened to speeches at the plaza before doing a “chain dance around the Picasso statue as the marchers shouted, ‘Gay power to gay people,’” the Chicago Tribune reported.
Chicago Gay Liberation, which organized the event, chose the date because the Stonewall uprising had started on the last Saturday in June the year prior. The members also wanted to reach the biggest crowd of shoppers on Chicago’s Magnificent Mile.
Today, the Chicago Pride Parade takes place on the last Sunday of June, drawing more than 800,000 people to North Halsted Street, long known as “Boystown.”
First out LGBTQ prime minister
While gay finance minister Per-Kristian Foss was briefly in charge of Norway in 2002 when both the prime minister and foreign minister were traveling abroad, Iceland’s Jóhanna Sigurðardóttir is the world’s first openly LGBTQ elected head of state.
A former flight attendant, Jóhanna was first elected to the Althingi (Iceland’s parliament) in 1978 as part of the Social Democratic Party. Throughout her career, she has also served as deputy speaker of the Althingi, vice chair of the SDP and minister of social affairs.
On Feb. 1, 2009, Jóhanna was formally sworn in as Iceland’s first female prime minister and the first out LGBTQ world leader in modern history. She served from 2009 to 2013, steering the country’s economy “back on solid footing” after the massive financial crisis, according to Britannica, with the country’s GDP growing 3 percent in both 2011 and 2012.
She and girlfriend Jónína Leósdóttir entered into a civil union in 2002. In 2010, when Iceland recognized same-sex marriage midway through Jóhanna’s tenure, the pair became one the first same-sex married couples in the country.
Society for Human Rights
First officially recognized gay rights group in the U.S.
German immigrant Henry Gerber launched the Society for Human Rights out of his Chicago home in 1924 and received an official charter from the state of Illinois, making it the first incorporated group devoted to gay rights in the U.S.
Stationed in his former homeland during World War I, Gerber witnessed Berlin’s thriving gay subculture and was influenced by the work of pioneering sex researcher Magnus Hirschfeld.
Returning to the States, he took a job with the post office and founded the society out of his apartment at 1710 N. Crilly Court in Chicago’s Old Town Triangle neighborhood.
But the organization lasted less than a year, disbanding in 1925 after police raids on both a member’s home and Gerber’s apartment. Gerber was fired from the post office and eventually moved to New York, where he continued advocating for gay rights until his death in 1972.
In 2015, Gerber’s Chicago home was designated a National Historic Landmark by the National Park Service.
First transgender tennis player to compete in the U.S. Open
Renée Richards was set to play in the 1976 U.S. Open until officials learned she was assigned male at birth and attempted to ban her from competing.
Richards had been a tennis prodigy from a young age, playing in the men’s Open several times and even making the semifinals in 1972. A successful ophthalmologist, she medically transitioned in 1975 and began living as Renée Richards (the name Renée meaning “reborn”).
She kept a fairly low profile — entering a 1976 competition as Renée Clark — but her transition was “outed” in a local news report by San Diego reporter Dick Carlson, father of Fox News pundit Tucker Carlson. Fans rooted against her, with shirts reading “Go away, Renee,” and late-night talk show hosts made crude jokes.
When Richards entered the Tennis Week Open in 1976, 25 of the 32 women in the competition withdrew.
To keep Richards off the court, the United States Tennis Association started demanding a chromosome test for all female players. She challenged that policy in a case that went before the New York Supreme Court.
Mirroring arguments made by groups seeking to ban transgender athletes today, the USTA argued it was trying to maintain “fairness” in the face of “as many as 10,000 transsexuals in the United States and many more female impersonators or imposters” who would be eager to snatch “millions of dollars of prize money.”
Billie Jean King, who had played doubles with Richards, testified that she “does not enjoy physical superiority or strength so as to have an advantage over women competitors in the sport of tennis.”
In a landmark victory, the court ruled in Richards’ favor.
“When an individual such as plaintiff, a successful physician, a husband and father, finds it necessary for [her] own mental sanity to undergo a sex reassignment, the unfounded fears and misconceptions of defendants must give way to the overwhelming medical evidence that this person is now female,” Judge Alfred Ascione wrote in the majority opinion.
Two weeks later, Richards played in the 1977 U.S. Open, where she lost to Wimbledon champ Virginia Wade in the first round. She did reach the doubles finals with Betty Ann Stuart, but the pair lost to Betty Stöve and a fiery new upstart named Martina Navratilova.
Four years later, Renée Richards retired from professional tennis at age 47. She continued her thriving ophthalmology practice and even coached Navratilova to two wins at Wimbledon.
Karl M. Baer
First person to surgically transition
Born in 1885 to a Jewish family in Arolsen, Germany, Baer was assigned female at birth, though the midwife told his father the baby’s body had “such strange” characteristics it was impossible to determine the gender.
In his 1907 autobiography, “Memoirs of a Man’s Maiden Years,” published under the pseudonym N.O. Body, Baer wrote about being ostracized at school and feeling ill at ease in his assigned sex.
While he is often referred to as transgender, today Baer would more accurately be considered intersex.
“I was born as a boy and raised as a girl,” he wrote. “One may raise a healthy boy in as womanish manner as one wishes and a female creature in as mannish; never will this cause their senses to remain forever reversed.”
In 1904, Baer moved to Hamburg to work as a social worker with the Jewish organization B’nai Brith. It was there that he began living as a man.
“I introduced myself as a man, never as a woman,” Baer wrote. “What am I really? Am I a man? Oh God, no. It would be an indescribable delight if I were. But miracles don’t happen anymore these days.”
Two years later, Baer was in a trolley accident in Berlin. He was rushed to the hospital, where doctors realized his ID listed him as female despite his presenting as male. They connected him with Magnus Hirschfeld, who diagnosed him as “a man who was mistakenly identified as a woman.”
With a permit from the Prussian Interior Ministry, Baer underwent a multistage gender confirmation procedure, Haaretz reported, though the exact details of the surgery are unknown. He was released from the hospital in December 1906 with a medical certificate identifying him as male. The following year, court clerks in Arolsen issued him a new birth certificate.
Others had transitioned socially before, but Baer “was unusual in that he used medical technology and surgical means to change his gender,” transgender historian Iris Rachamimov told Haaretz.
First bisexual “Bachelorette”
Since “The Bachelor” debuted on ABC in 2002, the marital-minded franchise has spawned multiple spinoff series and over 30 international editions. But it wasn’t until the upcoming season seven of “The Bachelorette Australia” that producers tapped an out member of the LGBTQ community to headline the show: 26-year-old Brooke Blurton, who is bisexual.
For the first time in the franchise’s history, the star will choose among both men and women during the rose ceremony.
“I am not too sure if Australia is ready for it,” Blurton, who previously appeared on the Down Under versions of “The Bachelor” and “Bachelor in Paradise,” told The Daily Telegraph. “I certainly am. If it makes people feel uncomfortable in any way, I really challenge them to think about why it does.”
Blurton, a Noongar Yamatji woman from Western Australia, will also be the first Indigenous woman on the show.
“We are a nation of people from so many different backgrounds, so many different cultures and so many different experiences, yet we all have one thing in common — we all want to be loved in a way that is meaningful to us,” “Bachelorette” host Osher Günsberg said in a statement. “I can’t wait to get started on helping our Bachelorette Brooke find that kind of love.”
Long before the push for marriage equality truly began, before Obergefell v Hodges, before the Defense of Marriage Act, there was Jack and Michael McConnell.
This year Jack and Michael will celebrate 51 years of happy marriage, making them longest-wed same-sex couple in the world. They were also the very first.
Thanks to a clever legal loophole they managed to do it as early as 1971, exchanging vows before a Methodist pastor and a dozen guests in a friend’s apartment.
Their journey began in 1966, at a Halloween party in Oklahoma where the pair first laid eyes on each other.
“I was looking for the three T’s: tall, thin and 23. And believe it or not, at 24, I thought that time had passed me by!” Jack laughs. “But there was Michael, and the three T’s were standing right in front of me.”
Michael wasn’t quite as enamoured at first, though.
“Well, I was a little taken aback, because Jack had been in the Air Force and he had his hair in a really short, flat top style,” he said. “At that time most people in our community were doing the long Beatles-type hair. So I looked at him and thought, ‘I don’t know about this guy.’
“But my friend Cruz said, ‘Michael, you don’t know what you’re talking about. You two are destined to be together.’ And I think Cruz was absolutely right.”
Sure enough, their love blossomed as the couple went to movies or plays or secret parties with friends, always careful to stay under the religious radar to avoid attacks. After a year together Jack came to Michael with a proposal: he wanted someone to grow old with.
The question caught Michael off guard. “OK, I will commit,” he said, “but only on one condition. If we’re going to do this, you must try to find a way for us to get legally married.”
Jack gave him a long look, then said simply: “Well, I guess I’m going to law school.”
The first rule of law school was simple – what’s not forbidden is permitted. Jack seized upon this, realising the statutes only referred to marriage between “two parties”, not man and woman, which meant he could technically apply for a marriage license.
When their first attempt in 1970 was denied they fought it in the Supreme Court, where they lost their case in a one-sentence dismissal: “The appeal is dismissed for want of a substantial federal question.”
Undeterred, the couple simply figured out another loophole.
First Michael legally adopted Jack, which gave them inheritance and other legal protections. Then Jack changed his first name to the gender-neutral “Pat Lyn”, and Michael went to apply for a license alone. And this time, it worked.
The pair were wed before officials could change their mind; unfortunately, when it was revealed that Jack and Michael were both men, those officials declared the license invalid. Jack refused to accept their decision.
“Something as simple and totally obvious to a law student was not that obvious to the rest of the world,” he said. “It was a fight. We’ve been fighting ever since.”
It was years before the homophobic rhetoric of the AIDS crisis; many people were simply curious and peppered them with questions. How exactly did their relationship work, they asked, and what did they want to accomplish?
More often than not, straight couples would shyly approach them after the event for advice about intimacy problems.
“We actually did not encounter any bullying or any harm at all,” Jack recalls.
“Because what we spoke to was love, our commitment and our relationship, almost everyone could understand that,” Michael says, finishing his husband’s thought.
We’ve jerked everybody 45 years into the future
Ultimately though, Jack and Michael McConnell were just a few decades ahead of their time.
As the 70s passed and marriage equality was no closer, Jack says they realised “we’ve jerked everybody 45 years into the future, and it’s gonna take them a while to catch up”.
The couple eventually took a step back to focus on their careers and allow a new generation of LGBT+ activists to continue the fight. But they never lost sight of their goal, and refused to accept their marriage was invalid.
And nearly five decades later, they were finally proven right. The Supreme Court referenced them by name in the momentous marriage equality battle, Obergefell v Hodges, which officially overturned the case against their marriage.
“I saw it as vindication,” Jack said. “I knew from day one we’d followed the letter of the law, and [the Supreme Court] verified that what was intuitively obvious to a second year law student in 1971 was indeed correct. It only took, what, 40 years?”
But even so, they can’t help but draw parallels between their experience and today’s struggle for trans rights.
“These right-wing crazies can’t attack gay marriage anymore, because it means attacking people like Jack and me, or their brother, their uncle, their aunt, their cousin. So now they’re going to try to find other people that they can label and lie about,” Michael said.
“And it’s not going to work. I can tell you, it’s not going to work, because it’s not natural. We’re all human beings. As long as we stand together, they’re not going to win.”
Now they’re leaving the fight to younger generations who are battling for the next round of LGBT+ rights – and it’s for these people that they’ve penned a book about their lives.
“We wanted to leave a story for them about how you can find your way and find the love you want,” Michael said.
“What I see in younger generations now is inspiring: they’re highly intelligent, they’re well connected all around the planet. And they have a vision that I agree with. It’s one that is based on love, not only for one another, wherever we come from, but for this planet that sustains us all.
“You can’t ask for more than that.”
Jack and Michael McConnell’s book, “The Wedding Heard ‘Round The World: America’s First Gay Marriage,” is out now in Paperback Original.
A former foster child adopted by two fathers after being abandoned for his sexuality has urged Congress not to stand in the way of loving LGBT+ families like his.
On Wednesday Weston Charles-Gallo, a former youth ambassador for the Human Rights Campaign, bravely testified in support of the bipartisan Every Child Deserves a Family Act (ECDF).
he bill would prohibit any federally-funded child welfare services from discriminating against prospective parents based solely on their sexual orientation, gender identity or marital status, as well as the sexuality or gender identity of the child involved.
This law is critical for young people like Weston, who entered the foster care system at 14 when his parents neglected him for coming out as gay. He experienced a year of hospitalisations, shelters and foster home placements before finally, at 15, he received the amazing news: “I was going to be adopted.”
“I have since learned that many, many LGBT+ foster youth never get that news,” he told lawmakers.
Weston was lucky: he found a loving home with two fathers and six siblings, who gave him the love and support he needed to grow into his authentic self.
“My dads showed me what it was like to witness a true marriage and live a normal life, expressing the meaning of family,” he said. “Before I lived with them I never pictured myself marrying someone or even having a family, but they proved to me that anything is possible.
“Without them in my life constantly supporting and encouraging me I don’t know where I would be, or even if I would be alive today. I finally found a home where I can live my authentic self.”
He stressed that in the conversation about same-sex couples fostering and adopting, all too often the message of giving needy children “safety, stability and love” is forgotten.
Why keep qualified parents from giving children the lives they deserve but never imagined?
“I urge committee member to focus on that mission, not on the personal beliefs of adults,” Weston said.
“If it wasn’t for my two dads taking a chance on me and helping me embrace my sexual orientation, the colour of my skin and who Weston is, I wouldn’t be here to share my story.
“When a child enters the foster care system they just want to find a family that loves them unconditionally and supports them continuously. Why keep qualified parents from giving children the lives they deserve but never imagined? Because that is exactly what my fathers did for me.”
Many states like Florida, Utah, Mississippi, Nebraska and Utah have policies that directly disadvantage LGBT+ and unmarried parents, leaving children vulnerable to the individual biases of agencies and case workers.
As well as increasing adoption rates, proponents of the ECDF bill say it would decrease risk factors for youth in foster care, yielding an annual cost savings of $3-$6 billion.
But most importantly, the legislation is about putting the needs of the child before all else.
“We should find more loving families like my dads that can be affirming of all kids in care,” Weston told members of Congress. “I want to ask all policy makers, foster care parents and social workers to take the time to put yourself in our shoes and think about what you wanted as a child.
“LGBT+ youth aren’t going anywhere, we’re here, and we’re asking to be heard and loved for who we are.”
An estimated 476,000 transgender adults in the U.S. are without any form of identification with the correct gender marker, according to a new report by the Williams Institute at the University of California Los Angeles School of Law. Michigan has the highest percentage of transgender adults without an ID that lists the correct gender (78%), and Delaware has the lowest (31%).
Using data from the 2015 U.S. Transgender Survey (USTS), researchers estimated the number of transgender people nationally and by state without accurate IDs and examined the relationship between state-level policies and having accurate IDs.
Findings show that transgender people in states with the fewest policy barriers to updating their gender marker are significantly more likely to have accurate birth certificates and driver’s licenses than those in states with the most barriers. States with the most burdensome requirements may require proof of gender-affirming surgical care to update a gender maker. States with less burdensome requirements may require individuals to fill out specified forms or submit an affidavit.
“Having inaccurate IDs can lead to harassment and discrimination for transgender people, which can negatively impact mental health,” said lead author Jody L. Herman, Scholar of Public Policy at the Williams Institute. “State and federal policymakers should enact policies that make gender marker changes on IDs less burdensome and more accessible for transgender people.”
55% of respondents to the 2015 USTS did not have any IDs with the correct gender marker.
In states with the fewest policy barriers, 47% of transgender people have corrected the gender markers on their driver’s licenses, compared to 26% of those living in states with the most policy barriers.
In states with the fewest policy barriers, 16% of transgender people have corrected the gender markers on their birth certificates, compared to 8% of those in states with the most policy barriers.
26% of transgender people with an incorrect gender marker on their driver’s license had the name or gender on their ID questioned by TSA officers, compared to 9% of those with the correct gender marker.
18% of those with an incorrect gender marker on their passport had the name or gender on their ID questioned by TSA officers, compared to 6% of those with the correct gender marker.
Currently, 20 states and the District of Columbia allow a gender marker of “X” on driver’s licenses, and 13 states allow an “X” gender marker on birth certificates.
When making a decision about where one should live, several factors come into play for everyone: housing costs, availability of medical services, access to entertainment, and more. But for the LGBTQ+ community, other questions are top-of-mind. Will I be welcome here? Will I be safe?
To help these individuals make an informed decision about the best places to live, our research team compiled state-by-state rankings from over a dozen sources (including the FBI, UCLA School of Law, the U.S. Census, and more). Through this research we’ve created comprehensive safety rankings that highlight some of the best and worst states to live from the perspective of LGBTQ+ safety.
Vermont and California scored the highest for LGBTQ+ safety, while North Dakota scored the lowest.
States with higher populations of LGBTQ+ residents also had higher than average rates of hate crime against the LGBTQ+ community, even in states that scored highly on the index regarding protection in the workplace, healthcare, and community.
LGBTQ+ focused adoption laws are not consistent across the country — 22 states’ adoption laws do not explicitly state they allow same-sex couples the right to second-parent adoption.
Only half of U.S. states have laws (including the District of Columbia) that include one or more LGBTQ+ nondiscrimination health care provisions for private insurance.
On average, states have more laws in place protecting LGBTQ+ public employees than private employees. 59% of states have laws that protect employees of state and local governments from discrimination based on sexual orientation, while 41% of states have laws that protect employees in the private sector from discrimination based on gender identity or gender expression.
What is the LGBTQ+ State Safety Ranking?
We gathered publicly available data on the following aspects of LGBTQ+ community safety and protection in all states: population, crime, work, marriage & family, and children. We then ranked these states on efforts they’ve taken to support LGBTQ+ rights both through public initiatives and private endeavors. (For our full methodology, please scroll to the end of this article.)
The Current State of LGBTQ+ Safety Nationally
According to the FBI,16.7% of hate crimes across the nation target the LGBTQ+ community. A history of civil rights legal achievements such as Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act or The Federal Fair Housing Act has established a baseline off which states can springboard with more specific LGBTQ+ protections. As the LGBTQ+ voice grows stronger, federal and state laws have begun to evolve in an attempt to keep pace. While some states are moving quickly in expanding protections for LGBTQ+ rights, other states have progressed more slowly.
LGBTQ+ Safety Index Rankings by State
The Top States for LGBTQ+ Safety
#1: California & Vermont (tie)
California and Vermont scored the highest for LGBTQ+ safety and equality. Both states have taken numerous legislative measures to support LGBTQ+ residents in recent years.
California | Safety Index Score: 100
Positive Factors: California LGBTQ+ Families
Even though California is below the national average for LGBTQ+ family populations, this state ranks at the top in protecting LGBTQ+ family structures. California allows same-sex couples the right to second-parent adoption, and it enables unmarried individuals and domestic partners to second-parent adopt.
Positive Factors: California LGBTQ+ Support in the Workplace
California scores highly for LGTBQ+ friendly work environments, protecting employees in state and local government and private sectors from discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression.
According to the Corporate Equality Index (CEI), which rates workplaces on LGBTQ+ equality, California is home to 154 top-scoring employers, averaging 92.5 out of 100 on the CEI.
Negative Factors: Hate Crimes against LGBTQ+ residents in California
California performs slightly poorer than the national average in terms of LGBTQ+ directed hate crimes.
Nationally, for every 100,000 LGBTQ+ residents, there are 10 hate crimes directed toward LGBTQ+ individuals. In California, that number increases to 12.8.
Vermont | Safety Index Score: 100
Positive Factors: Vermont LGBTQ+ Support in the Workplace
Like California, Vermont scores very high on the Corporate Equality Index, a national rating system for LGBTQ+ equality amongst participating companies and Fortune 500 companies, earning a perfect 100 rating. Vermont also scores highly in this category due to state laws that protect LGBTQ+ workers in public and private state enterprises.
Positive Factors: LGBTQ+ Supportive Healthcare in Vermont
Vermont has a robust regulatory matrix in place for LGBTQ+ safety and protection in healthcare. It also features a substantial number of LGBTQ+ allied professionals and has a trans youth clinic presence. Vermont state law bans transgender exclusions in health insurance and discrimination against patients based on sexual orientation or gender identity.
Negative Factors: Hate Crimes against LGBTQ+ residents in Vermont
Like California, Vermont does not perform as well regarding hate crimes targeted against the LGBTQ+ community. Per every 100,000 LGBTQ+ residents, 30.8 hate crimes occur in Vermont against LGBTQ+ members of the community.
Safety Index Score: 97
Positive Factors: Hate Crimes against LGBTQ+ residents in Maryland
For every 100,000 LGBTQ+ people, Maryland sees just 2.8 LGBTQ+ targeted hate crimes, well below the national average of 10 per 100,000 LGBTQ+ residents.
Positive Factors: Anti-discrimination in Maryland Schools
Maryland legislators have enacted laws that prohibit bullying, cyberbullying, and discrimination in public and private schools, including negative actions based on gender identity or sexual orientation.
Negative Factors: LGBTQ+ Supportive Healthcare in Maryland
Maryland’s healthcare protections have helped protect LGBTQ+ patients from discrimination. However, Maryland does not currently have a law that explicitly bans transgender exclusions in health insurance.
Safety Index Score: 94
Positive Factors: LGBTQ+ Public Accommodations Support
Washington has a higher portion of the general population that’s LGBTQ+ compared to the rest of the country, and supports it by implementing public accommodations protections based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
Positive Factors: Anti-discrimination in Washington Schools
Washington scores highly on the index in protecting children due to their multiple laws prohibiting bullying and cyberbullying in public schools while specifically targeting children based on gender identity and sexual orientation.
Negative Factors: Washington LGBTQ+ Families
While state law does protect same-sex marriage, it does not offer any other type of relationship recognition for same-sex couples.
#5: Illinois & Oregon (tie)
Both Illinois and Oregon made the top five on the LGBTQ+ safety index due to their public accommodation laws for LGBTQ+ residents, anti-bullying regulations, and high scores on the Corporate Equality Index.
Illinois | Safety Index Score: 92
Positive Factors: Hate Crimes against LGBTQ+ residents in Illinois
For every 100,000 LGBTQ+-identifying people, 4.2 experience hate crimes in Illinois. This number is significantly below the national average of 10 per 100,000 LGBTQ+ residents.
Positive Factors: Illinois LGBTQ+ Support in the Workplace
The Corporate Equality Index, which rates workplaces on LGBTQ+ equality, has awarded Illinois a 90 out of 100 on their index, well above the national average. Additionally, Illinois has laws on the books that prohibit discrimination based on gender identity, gender expression, or sexual orientation for government and private sector employees.
Negative Factors: LGBTQ+ Supportive Healthcare in Illinois
Illinois has many mechanisms to support positive healthcare for the LGBTQ+ community, such as banning transgender exclusions in health insurance and similar laws. However, this state does have a lower than the average number of allied health providers, according to the GLMA.
Oregon | Safety Index Score: 92
Positive Factors: Oregon LGBTQ+ Support in the Workplace
Oregon scores 88 out of 100 on the corporate equality index. Oregon law also has protections against discrimination in both the public and private workplace based on gender identity, gender expression, or sexual orientation.
Positive Factors: LGBTQ+ Public Accommodations Support
Oregon has the highest percentage (6%) of LGBTQ+ residents of any state. (If considered a state, the District of Columbia would beat Oregon with their 10%.) As such, Oregon protects its residents with laws that provide public accommodations support for the LGBTQ+ community.
Negative Factors: Hate Crimes against LGBTQ+ residents in Oregon
Oregon has higher than average hate crime occurrences against LGBTQ+ individuals. For every 100,000 LGBTQ+ residents, 14 LGBTQ+ targeted hate crimes occur.
Safety Index Score: 89
Positive Factors: Anti-discrimination in Massachusetts Schools
Current Massachusetts law prohibits bullying, cyberbullying, and discrimination based on gender identity or sexual orientation in public schools and private non-religious schools.
Positive Factors: Massachusetts LGBTQ+ Support in the Workplace
The Corporate Equality Index gives Massachusetts companies high marks: 96 out of 100 for the state overall, well above the nationwide average of 87. The state hosts 49 employers alone that score 100 on the CEI.
Negative Factors: Massachusetts LGBTQ+ Families
A below-average percentage of LGBTQ+ families call Massachusetts home compared to the national state average (21% for Massachusetts compared to the national average of 27%). Massachusetts law recognizes same-sex marriage, but it does not provide for any other relationship recognition for same-sex couples.
The Worst States for LGBTQ+ Safety
#45: Mississippi, Kentucky, & Montana (tie)
Safety Index Score: -56 for all three states
Mississippi, Kentucky, and Montana tied for the fifth-lowest state in providing LGBTQ+ safety. None of these states have laws in place that ban transgender exclusions from health insurance or fight discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. None of these states have trans youth clinics. In terms of adoption, neither Mississippi, Kentucky, nor Montana law explicitly states any allowance for same-sex couple second-parent adoption.
Safety Index Score: -58
Georgia has no measured protections in place through state law for public accommodations, anti-discrimination in healthcare, or employment protection from discrimination. LGBTQ+ residents living in Georgia must take extra care in understanding employers’ stances on LGBTQ+ employees’ rights and ensure they carry health insurance that voluntarily and explicitly supports LGBTQ+ protections.
Safety Index Score: -61
Although Kansas law prohibits bullying and cyberbullying, no language specifically references bullying or discrimination based on gender or sexual orientation. Kansas law also fails to protect LGBTQ+ employees in private and public workplaces. No laws prohibit the denial of coverage for transgender individuals by health insurance providers.
#50: South Dakota
Safety Index Score: -67
South Dakota produced low scores in nearly every category, failing to implement significant protection against discrimination of LGBTQ+ individuals in school settings, employment, healthcare, and public accommodations. South Dakota witnesses 15 LGBTQ+ directed hate crimes per every 100,000 members of the LGBTQ+ community, which is 1.5 times higher than the national average.
#51: North Dakota
Safety Index Score: -78
North Dakota is the number one worst state for LGBTQ+ safety according to our ranking. This state does not provide public accommodation protections based on gender identity or sexual orientation. North Dakota experiences a higher than average rate of hate crimes against the LGBTQ+ population (14.6 for every 100,000 LGBTQ+ individuals).
There are no high-ranking companies on the corporate equality index in North Dakota. Nor are there any legal protections in place in the public or private employment sector that safeguard LGBTQ+ anti-discrimination rights. North Dakota law prohibits bullying and cyberbullying in schools but contains no language specifically to protect LGBTQ+ youth. North Dakota adoption law does not explicitly allow same-sex couples the right to second-parent adoption.
States with higher concentrations of LGBTQ+ residents performed better in our rankings with the exception of Georgia (#48). However, in terms of hate crimes against the LGBTQ+ community, these high-performing states collectively averaged 19.9 hate crimes per 100,000 LGBTQ+ residents, far above the national average of 10 per 100,000.
The disparity underscores the room for improvement all states have in providing a safe living environment for LGBTQ+ residents regardless of performance in our rankings. States like California, Vermont, Maryland, Washington, Illinois, Oregon, and Massachusetts are leading the way in safeguarding LGBTQ+ rights, while other states such as Kentucky, Mississippi, Montana, Georgia, Kansas, South Dakota, and North Dakota have much more work to do to close the gap.
To create our rankings, we gathered data from multiple sources indicating various protections issued by states to the LGBTQ+ community in critical areas: community support, crime, healthcare, workplace protection, marriage and family rights, and protections for kids.
We researched public accommodations made for the LGBTQ+ population by state.
Since crime is a crucial safety indicator, we included levels of LGBTQ+ hate crimes state-by-state in our rankings.
We incorporated state laws concerning LGBTQ+ employee protection in both public and private sector positions.
Marriage & Family
States that had more mechanisms in place to support LGBTQ+ families ranked higher than states without such means. We also took states that had higher concentrations of LGBTQ+ families into consideration.
We evaluated each state in terms of its ability to protect children in public and private schools from bullying, cyberbullying, and discrimination.
From these sources, we could answer specific yes/no questions in each critical area that would indicate a particular state’s ability to create a safe environment for the LGBTQ+ community. Questions included (but aren’t limited to) the following:
Does state law expressly protect employees of state and local governments from discrimination based on gender identity or gender expression?
Does the state offer any other type of relationship recognition for same-sex couples?
Is there a state anti-discrimination law that applies (or may apply) to schools?
Does the state explicitly ban transgender exclusions in health insurance?
States were rated 1 or -1 depending on whether their actions were helpful or harmful to the LGBTQ+ community. State scores were totaled and then indexed, resulting in a possible score range between 100 and -100 per state — 100 being the best and -100 being the worst.
To conduct this research and create this index, we relied on data from the following sources:
GLAAD, the world’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) media advocacy organization, today revealed its second annual 20 Under 20 list, spotlighting twenty young LGBTQ people, ages 20 and under, who are accelerating acceptance of LGBTQ people while shaping the future of media and activism. GLAAD’s 20 Under 20 list is presented by Google, with Official Sponsors UGG® and Shutterfly.
GLAAD’s 20 Under 20 list launched this morning in Teen Vogue, featuring individual portraits of each honoree captured on the Google Pixel 5 by Mayan Toledano of Pixel’s Creator Labs. See the full list here.
“More than ever before, young LGBTQ people are changing the way the world sees and understands LGBTQ people, while leading the charge to create a safer, more inclusive and equal society for all,” said GLAAD President & CEO Sarah Kate Ellis. “Whether it’s driving LGBTQ visibility and representation in national politics, local activism, music, or Hollywood, the honorees on this year’s 20 Under 20 list are a testament to the power that young LGBTQ people have to create lasting cultural change.”
Full profiles of the 20 Under 20 honorees can be found at TeenVogue.com. This year’s honorees include:
Amiri Nash, he/him, 19. Amiri is an artist, activist, writer, and a DC Youth Poet Laureate who co-founded Sign of Justice, a project that creates signs in predominantly white neighborhoods to raise awareness about racial injustice and other social issues.
Andrea Alejandra Gonzales, they/she, 20. Andrea is a Mestiza queer activist and organizer, currently working as the Director of Operations for Youth Over Guns and an Instructor through New Yorkers Against Gun Violence Education Fund’s school program, ReACTION.
Andrew Adams, he/him, 20. Andrew is student and activist from Florida who successfully sued his school board for restricting him from using the men’s restroom because he is transgender, becoming the country’s first trial involving a transgender student’s equal access to restrooms.
Ashton Mota, he/him, 16. Ashton is a GenderCool Project Champion who is well known for being a public face for the “Yes on 3” movement in Massachusetts, which successfully upheld a law allowing people to use restrooms and public facilities that align with their gender identity.
Austin Houck, he/him, 20. Austin is the founder of Homoglobin, a nonprofit dedicated to advancing queer equality in healthcare and education, which was instrumental in helping to pass HB 916 in Virginia in 2020.
Cyn Gómez, they/them/elle, 18. Cyn is a LGBTQ and mental health activist who serves as a member of the Mental Health America’s Youth Leadership Council, an ambassador for the Tangible Movement, and a Commissioner on Homelessness for the City of Berkeley.
Darid Prom, any pronouns, 20. Darid is a queer immigrant who has worked with GLSEN, GLAAD, and multiple nonprofits to promote the liberation of LGBTQ people of color, and has testified in front of the House Committee on Oversight and Reform on the impact of anti-LGBTQ bills on LGBTQ youth.
Eli Bundy, they/them, 17. Eli is a trans and non-binary student and activist who led their school’s Gender and Sexuality Alliance in successfully striking down South Carolina’s “No Promo Homo” policy, the first time such state law has been abolished by a federal court on constitutional grounds.
Gia Parr, she/her, 17. Gia is a GenderCool Project Champion who uses her platform to educate the public about trans youth. In addition to guest starring in season 2 of Pose, she recently released a book titled, “A Kids Book About Being Transgender,” which helps start conversations between children, parents, and families about what it’s like to be a young trans person.
JoJo Siwa, she/her, 18. JoJo is a global popstar and one of the most influential teenagers in the world, with over 45 million social media followers across platforms. Earlier this year, JoJo came out as a member of the LGBTQ community and continues to use her platform to promote necessary messages of LGBTQ acceptance and equality.
Kaylyn Suji Ahn, she/they, 17. Kaylyn is a queer student and activist who organizes monthly projects in their community centered on social justice, advocacy, and community service. Kaylyn spearheaded a “March for Asian Lives” demonstration in Arlington Heights, Illinois to call for an end to anti-Asian hate following the horrific Atlanta shooting in March 2021.
Max Prestigiacomo, he/him, 19. Max is a student, community organizer, and politician who was elected to the Madison Common Council in April 2020, becoming the youngest elected official in the country and the youngest ever to sit on the Madison Common Council. He also became one of the first out LGBTQ candidates ever elected in Madison.
Molly Pinta, she/her, 15. Molly is a bisexual student and activist who founded a nonprofit called The Pinta Pride Project to increase LGBTQ awareness within suburban communities in Illinois. She also launched her town’s first-ever Pride celebration in 2019 and served as the Youth Grand Marshal of the 2019 Chicago Pride Parade.
mxmtoon, she/her, 20. mxmtoon is a bisexual artist, songwriter, actor, designer, and gamer with over 2.9 million social media followers. Well known for playing the ukulele and her unique bedroom pop anthems, including her hit single prom dress, mxmtoon’s music has been streamed over 500 million times across platforms.
Onyx (E. Smith), they/them, 19. Onyx is a Black, queer, non-binary activist who founded the Central Texas GSA Coalition to enhance the impact of GSAs in the Austin, Texas area. They also created a project called Q+ EDU, an interactive virtual experience designed to connect, inform, and empower LGBTQ and allied students, parents, and educators.
Soleil Wheeler a.k.a Ewok, he/him, 15. Ewok is a professional Fortnite player who is part of the FaZe Clan, and recently signed an exclusive streaming deal with Twitch, where he has over 346,000 followers. On National Coming Out Day in 2020, Ewok publicly disclosed that he is transgender and bisexual, becoming the first transgender man in the T1 esports organization.
Stella Keating, she/her, 16. Stella is a GenderCool Project Champion and aspiring politician who made history by becoming the first transgender teen to testify in front of the U.S. Senate when she spoke during a hearing on the Equality Act in March 2021.
Trevor Wilkinson, he/him, 18. Trevor is an openly gay student from Texas who, after being suspended from his high school for wearing nail polish, successfully influenced his school administration to adopt a gender-neutral dress code policy following the launch of a petition signed by over 400,000 supporters.
Ve’ondre Mitchell, she/her, 17. Ve’ondre is a Black and Latinx transgender social media star who uses her platform to amplify conversations about trans inclusion and representation to her more than 3.6 million followers across TikTok and Instagram. In 2021, she was nominated for the first-ever “TikTok Queer Advocate of the Year” award at the 32nd Annual GLAAD Media Awards.
Yasmin Finney, she/they, 17. Yasmin is a rising Black British trans actress who rose to prominence on TikTok with videos sharing her experience as a Black trans woman. She is set to star as the lead role in Orion Pictures’ coming-of-age film What If?, directed by Billy Porter, as well as in Netflix’s upcoming series Heartstopper.
“As a GLAAD board member, I’m so inspired by these 20 individuals who are creating a safer and more inclusive world for LGBTQ+ people,” said Adrienne Hayes, Vice President of Marketing at Google and Co-Global Executive Sponsor of PRIDE at Google. “Across Google, we’re constantly striving to make our products and platforms more inclusive for everyone and I am so proud that Google Pixel could play a role in celebrating these honorees.”
The honorees on GLAAD’s 20 Under 20 list were selected by an internal committee at GLAAD, specializing in LGBTQ entertainment, media, and activism. Honorees were chosen based on the following criteria: 1) The honoree works to positively affect marginalized communities, particularly LGBTQ people; 2) The honoree has been featured in or a part of broad regional or national news media stories, public media campaigns, or other public media initiatives; 3) The honoree enhances representation for LGBTQ people through media advocacy; 4) The honoree utilizes an intersectional approach to LGBTQ advocacy.
GLAAD launched its inaugural 20 Under 20 list in June 2020, featuring model Aaron Philip, rapper Kidd Kenn, actors Ian Alexander, Joshua Rush, Josie Totah, and Logan Rozos, activists X González, Jazz Jennings, Jamie Margolin, and Sarah Rose Huckman, among others. Check out last year’s list here.
GLAAD’s 20 Under 20 honorees gain access to a network of resources made available by the largest LGBTQ media advocacy organization in the world. 20 Under 20 honorees will receive the opportunity to participate in an exclusive live-stream media training hosted by the GLAAD Media Institute. Throughout the year, GLAAD will also help give greater visibility to the 20 Under 20 honorees in the media, including opportunities such as helping to secure media placements, elevating projects on social media, and connecting honorees with unique industry resources for achieving their future goals.