Mycroft Masada is a queer trans faith leader who moved to the Washington DC area of Maryland’s Montgomery County from their lifelong home of Boston in 2014. Mycroft co-chairs the MoCo Pride Center, is a TransFaith National Council member, a TransEpiscopal Steering Committee member and former Congregation Am Tikva board member. Mycroft is particularly called to pursue justice at the intersections of LGBTQI+ and fat communities, and is an advocate, organizer, consultant, educator, trainer, writer and artist. They are partnered with Julia McCrossin, the massculine fatshion blogger, and with her co-parents a dogter. Their central online home is MasadArts.blogspot.com.

Facebook | Twitter | LinkedIn | My artwork (stationery, jewelry & more)

THE MOCO PRIDE CENTER'S LAUNCH PARTY IS OCTOBER 25TH! Facebook Event | EventBrite Site


Tuesday, May 31, 2011

27th Annual Erev Pride WEEK Liberation Seder -- THIS FRIDAY!!

CAT is Boston's GLBT synagogue and my synagogue, and invented the Pride seder here in Boston 27 years ago. I've been on the Seder planning committee for several years. All are welcome!!! You don't have to be GLBTQ (et al) or Jewish.

~ 27th Annual ~
Erev Pride WEEK* Liberation Seder
*the night before Boston GLBT Pride WEEK

THIS FRIDAY, June 3rd, 2011

7:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.

Temple Sinai ~ Weintraub Auditorium
50 Sewall Ave. in Brookline, MA
(Green Line - C train - Coolidge Corner stop; #66 bus)

In the tradition of the Passover seder, we will retell the story of
the GLBT community’s liberation. This year, we celebrate marriage
equality as well as recognize the continuing violence and
discrimination committed against transgender and all people because of
their gender identity and expression. We will take this opportunity to
taste the bitterness of this oppression and to take action against it.

Participants will have the opportunity to take action to support the
Transgender Equal Rights Bill.

Kosher desserts will be served. Suggested donation is $5.

Facebook event page:

617.232.5543 | info@AmTikva.org


Wednesday, May 25, 2011

NEVADA - transgender anti-employment-discrimination law passed

Nevada is where my favorite aunt lives -- my Aunt June, who I was named after; my late mother's younger sister.


Transgender Equal Rights Coalition Congratulates Nevada On New Law Protecting Transgender Workers From Discrimination

May 25th, 2011

14 states, District of Columbia, and 100s of businesses now prohibit discrimination against transgender people

BOSTON—Nevada Republican Gov. Brian Sandoval signed into law yesterday a measure banning employment discrimination based on gender identity and expression. Nevada is the 14th state to prohibit workplace discrimination against transgender people.

“We applaud Nevada for protecting all residents,” said Gunner Scott, executive director of the Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition. “Everyone should have the same opportunities to work, and this bill will help Nevada residents who are transgender support themselves and their families.”

“We know that employment discrimination against transgender people is costing the state of Massachusetts at least $5 million a year in lost income tax revenues and increased expenditures on public health insurance coverage,” said MassEquality Executive Director Kara Suffredini. “Nearly 100 businesses in Massachusetts, our Executive Branch, and 14 other states, including three of our New England neighbors and the District of Columbia, have put protections in place for transgender people. We applaud Nevada lawmakers for working in bipartisan fashion to take this important step and urge lawmakers on Beacon Hill to join the chorus calling for passage this bill.”

On Wednesday, June 8, the Joint Committee on the Judiciary will hold a hearing on the Transgender Equal Rights Bill at 1 pm in Gardner Auditorium at the State House. The bill would update Massachusetts’ nondiscrimination and hate crimes laws to include transgender people. The 13 other states, in addition to Nevada and the District of Columbia, that have enacted laws banning discrimination against transgender people are: California, Colorado, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, Rhode Island, Vermont, Iowa, Oregon, and Washington.

###

About the Transgender Equal Rights Coalition:
The Transgender Equal Rights Coalition is working to pass “An Act Relative to Transgender Equal Rights.” (House Bill 502 and Senate Docket Number 536). This law would add gender identity and expression to existing Massachusetts civil rights laws, which currently prohibit discrimination on the basis of age, race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, sex, and marital status in the areas of employment, housing, public accommodations, education, and credit. The bill would also add offenses regarding gender identity or expression to the list of offenses that are subject to treatment as hate crimes. The bill defines gender identity and expression as “a gender-related identity, appearance, expression, or behavior of an individual, regardless of the individual’s assigned sex at birth.” This is consistent with the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination’s past decisions, as well as Boston’s 2002 transgender anti-discrimination ordinance. Members of the coalition include MassNOW; ACLU of Massachusetts; Jane Doe, Inc., The Massachusetts Coalition Against Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence; National Association of Social Workers, MA; Mass AFL-CIO; Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders; Mass Gay and Lesbian Political Caucus; Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition; and MassEquality.

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Tuesday, May 24, 2011

CONNECTICUT - transgender rights Bill passed House; Senate vote between now & June 8th!


GLADbanner

Dear Mycroft,

Last week, we heard great news as the Connecticut House voted 77-62 to pass HB 6599: An Act Against Discrimination, a bill that would add gender identity and expression to Connecticut's anti-discrimination law.

The House majority understood, as we do, that no one should live in fear of losing their job, or face discrimination in housing, public accommodations or credit simply because they are transgender.


Now the bill is moving on to the Senate, where it must pass in order to become law. We expect that vote to come as soon as this week (the legislative session ends on June 8).


Please contact your senators today and urge them to support the bill with no amendments.

With your continued support, we can make sure Connecticut affirms its commitment to providing equality and fairness by becoming the fourteenth state to add gender identity and gender expression to its non-discrimination statutes.

Thank you for supporting equality,

Jennifer Levi

Transgender Rights Project Director

P.S. I was elated to be there as the Connecticut House took a huge step toward achieving basic fairness and equality for all residents. You can read my reflections on the GLAD blog.



Jennifer Levi with CT Rep Gary Holder-Winfield

Jennifer Levi with
Representative
Gary Holder-Winfield

after the House vote


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Thursday, May 19, 2011

TransFaith Caucus - Washington DC - this Sunday

Transgender Caucus on Sunday, May 22, 2011

MCC's People of African Descent Conference (May 19-21, 2011) and HRC's Clergy Call(May 22-24, 2011) have coordinated their programming for 2011, as they both gather in Washington D.C.

There will be a TransFaith Caucus on Sunday, May 22, 2011 (Noon to 3pm). Local transgender people and transgender participants from both events are invited to gather for lunch and conversation between these to larger events. We will...

  • Meet, greet, network, and get to know one another
  • Discuss the needs of transgender clergy and brainstorm about future organizing for mutual support
  • Consider strategies to address barriers to transgender service and professional development

HRC is providing the gathering space and funding for a simple lunch. Please plan your travel to arrive in time to participate.

  • Where: HRC offices, 1640 Rhode Island Avenue NW # 1, Washington D.C.
  • When: Sunday, May 22, 2011, noon to 3pm
  • RSVP: Please contact chris@transfaithonline.org so we can be sure to have enough food on hand! And please advise of any dietary restrictions.
  • Transportation: We will work together to transport folks from HRC to Mt. Vernon Place UMC, where the evening activities for Clergy Call 2011 and MCC PAD will be happening. Please let us know if you can assist with these logistics.

Letters & signatures needed for Transgender Equal Rights Bill!

Good morning!

We still need testimony letters and Declaration signatures for the Transgender Equal Rights Bill’s public hearing on Wednesday June 8th -- please submit your letters and signatures by this coming Monday, May 23rd. (We need to produce binders of testimony and other documents to give to each Committee member on hearing day.)


To sign ICTE’s Declaration Of Religious And Faith-Based Support for the bill:

Read the signed Declaration as a PDF (updated yesterday):

https://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&pid=explorer&chrome=true&srcid=0B-u19Qf_xKGEODRmYmQ3MmItZjllYi00NjBiLWJjZWYtMzNlYmJjMDRkMWNj&hl=en&authkey=CKTEj7QG

If you don’t see your or your community / organization’s signatures, emailInterfaithCoalition@gmail.com – include the name(s) as you wish it/them to appear (if you have a title, please use it if you can), and the denomination(s).


To submit written testimony for the bill’s hearing (Wednesday, June 8th):

Write a letter telling the Joint Committee on the Judiciary why you support the bill and urging them to do so (we need them to vote the bill onwards to be voted on by the full legislature). If you submitted testimony last legislative session, you will be contacted about updating it. Submit your written testimony to the Committee co-chairs and MTPC. All testimony will be presented to the Committee the day of the hearing. Full instructions for writing and submitting:

http://www.masstpc.org/legislation/testifyinwriting.shtml


More details and opportunities for action are in our previous update (Friday May 6th):

http://interfaithcoalition.blogspot.com/2011/05/update-ma-transgender-equal-rights-bill.html


Thank you,


Interfaith Coalition for Transgender Equality (ICTE)

http://www.interfaithcoalition.blogspot.com

ICTE FB group:

http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=7923372429

Faith campaign FB event:

http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=188135257891766


Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Tell Congress the Safe Schools Improvement Act needs to include weight and height in anti-bullying protections!

Yesterday's press release from National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance (NAAFA) --
http://www.prlog.org/11496235-legislative-action-alert-immediate-action-needed-help-stop-the-bullying.html:

NAAFA.org Logo

Legislative Action Alert: Immediate Action Needed. Help Stop The Bullying!

Weight and height are missing from the proposed Safe Schools Improvement Act 2010. Multiple studies indicate that fat children are the group being most bullied! Help change this act now before it becomes law.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

PRLog (Press Release)May 17, 2011 – Who: We need YOU to contact your Members of Congress TODAY

What: The Safe Schools Improvement Act of 2010 (S.3739)

Why: The legislation does NOT include weight and height as part of its anti-bullying protections

How: Use our legislative action alert

• BACKGROUND
The Safe Schools Improvement Act of 2010 (S.3739) is a bipartisan bill introduced in the Senate by Senators Bob Casey and Mark Kirk to help prevent bullying in schools. The Safe Schools Improvement Act would require schools and districts receiving designated federal funds to adopt codes of conduct specifically prohibiting bullying and harassment, including conduct based on a student’s actual or perceived race, color, national origin, sex, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or religion. It was introduced to the Senate on August 3, 2010 and referred to the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP Committee).

There has not been a hearing on the Bill to date, so now is the time to contact these Senators and ask them to amend the legislation to include weight and height to the list of protected classes prior to the Bill’s approval.

• CONGRESSIONAL TARGETS:
The members of the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions include:

Democrats by Rank
Tom Harkin (IA)
Barbara A. Mikulski (MD)
Jeff Bingaman (NM)
Patty Murray (WA)
Bernard Sanders (I) (VT)
Robert P. Casey, Jr. (PA)
Kay R. Hagan (NC)
Jeff Merkley (OR)
Al Franken (MN)
Michael F. Bennet (CO)
Sheldon Whitehouse (RI)
Richard Blumenthal (CT)

Republicans by Rank
Michael B. Enzi (WY)
Lamar Alexander (TN)
Richard Burr (NC)
Johnny Isakson (GA)
Rand Paul (KY)
Orrin G. Hatch (UT)
John McCain (AZ)
Pat Roberts (KS)
Lisa Murkowski (AK)
Mark Kirk (IL)

Even if you are not a constituent of the members listed, it is important that they hear your voice. Also, if you have specific stories about how bullying has affected your child or a child you know, that has a huge impact. Here is an example to help in composing your letter to the Committee members:

• HOW TO CONTACT THEM: SAMPLE LETTER

Dear Senator _____________:
As a member of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions, I want to bring to your attention the need to amend the Safe Schools Improvement Act of 2010 (S.3739) prohibiting bullying and harassment, including conduct based on a student’s actual or perceived race, color, national origin, sex, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or religion.

While I support the intent of this legislation, there is an entire segment of children that would not be covered in this legislation as currently written, fat children. As we have seen in recent events where a teen girl from Minnesota committed suicide partly because of being teased and bullied about her weight, fat children are at risk.

There are numerous studies that outline the effects of bullying on children because of their size and/or body image. Along with fat children, short children are victims of incessant bullying on a daily basis.

While we believe it is the intent of this legislation to ensure a safe environment for children within public schools, we ask that they do not exclude and further stigmatize the largest group of children that are facing bullying on a daily basis.

We ask that the Committee request to amend the Safe Schools Improvement Act of 2010 to include weight and height to the list of protected classes. Thank you!

Signature
City, State
Email Address

You can send an email to any or all of the Senate Committee members by going to http://www.senate.gov/general/contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm and search the listing to find the names of Committee members. Then click on the link to complete an online form.

Or you can write to the Committee at:
Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions
428 Senate Dirksen Office Building
Washington, DC 20510

Thank you for helping to make positive changes in the lives of children.

On the web: http://www.naafa.org

# # #

Founded in 1969, NAAFA is a non-profit civil rights organization dedicated to ending size discrimination. Our goal is for people of size to be accepted with dignity and equality and will pursue this goal through advocacy, public education, and support.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

MA Transgender Equal Rights Bill in Metro Boston newspaper again!

The MA Transgender Equal Rights Bill is in the Metro Boston newspaper again! Page two of today's print edition (available online as a PDF). Here's the online version:



Transgender rights up for debate on Hill

NICOLAUS CZARNECKI/METRO

Gunnar Scott, executive director of the Mass. Transgender Political Coaltion, will take his fight for equality to Beacon Hill next month.

BOSTON
LINDA LABAN
Published: May 16, 2011 7:57 p.m.
Last modified: May 16, 2011 8:00 p.m.
Email
Text size
Last week’s debut of the Chaz Bono documentary brought the battles of transgender people to the spotlight, but in Massachusetts, a much quieter battle is being waged at the State House — one that many are hoping will be deemed a success in a few short weeks.

The battle for transgender equality already received one victory when the Boston City Council in March unanimously reiterated its support of an ordinance passed in 2002 that legally protects Boston’s transgender population against discrimination and violence. The bigger fight, however, is to gain that protection statewide.

“That’s the push now,” confirms Gunner Scott, executive director of the Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition. “Honestly, the resolution was done within 24 hours of my asking them. Every one of those city councilors didn’t think twice about it. They get it. The mayor of Boston, he gets it. I only wish our Legislature was as open to the experiences of transgender people.”

Those experiences involve job discrimination, being refused service at restaurants, and even violence and murder. The Transgender Equal Rights Bill would protect basic civil rights for transgender people in Massachusetts. The MTPC has worked to gain protection since 2007 and a joint hearing of the bill is scheduled for June 8.

“The committee deliberates on whether they are in favor or not, or whether it’s sent to study. For the last two sessions, we’ve been sent to study,” says Scott grimly, because that’s akin to being put on the back burner.

Besides City Council support, new federal transgender protection — including measures by the departments of Labor and Housing and Urban Development — add more support.

“It’s sad,” Scott said. “At one point [Mass.] stood up for civil rights, but [it’s not] doing that right now.”


Thursday, May 12, 2011

Study Finds Employment Discrimination against Transgender Residents of Massachusetts Costs the State Millions Annually


New Study Finds Employment Discrimination against Transgender Residents of Massachusetts Costs the State Millions Annually

May 11th, 2011

For Immediate Release


Contact: Gunner Scott: 617-778-0519
Kara Suffredini: 617-878-2300


May 11, 2011


BOSTON — A new research study released today by The Williams Institute on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Law and Public Policy shows that employment discrimination against transgender residents of Massachusetts likely costs the state millions of dollars each year. These costs are the result of reduced income tax revenue, expenditures on public assistance programs, and other costs related to an increased need for public assistance programs. The added cost to the Commonwealth for public health insurance coverage alone is $3 million annually due to employment discrimination against transgender workers.


“When transgender people experience employment discrimination, not only can that have a substantial negative impact on people’s lives, but it also affects the Commonwealth financially so all Massachusetts residents pay a price,” said study author Jody L. Herman, the Peter J. Cooper Public Policy Fellow at the Williams Institute. “The legislature is making painful choices as it builds next year’s budget,” said Kara Suffredini, executive director of MassEquality. “This law would not cost the state a dime, but it could bring in millions of revenue and savings each year.”


“Employment discrimination erodes your dignity—and empties your pocketbook. When otherwise qualified people cannot find work solely because of who they are, the state loses money in lost tax revenues and increased expenditures on public programs such as MassHealth,” said Gunner Scott, executive director of the Massachusetts Transgender
Political Coalition.


In calculating the cost to the Commonwealth, the study estimates that 6,600 Massachusetts residents have lost a job, 12,900 were not hired for a job, and 5,600 were denied a promotion, all due to due to anti-transgender bias. Furthermore, 15 percent of surveyed transgender Massachusetts residents made $10,000 or less in annual household income, whereas only 3 percent of the Massachusetts general population made this amount.


Employment discrimination can lead to lost wages and the need to access public assistance programs to replace lost income and health insurance coverage. This study estimates that the Commonwealth may be losing millions in income tax revenues each year due to employment discrimination. In addition, the Commonwealth is spending nearly $3 million every year in public health insurance coverage for those who have lost jobs due to anti-transgender bias.


View or download the report

See press coverage


###

About the Transgender Equal Rights Coalition
The Transgender Equal Rights Coalition is working to pass “An Act Relative to Transgender Equal Rights.” (House Bill 502 and Senate Docket Number 536). This law would add gender identity and expression to existing Massachusetts civil rights laws, which currently prohibit
discrimination on the basis of age, race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, sex, and marital status in the areas of employment, housing, public accommodations, education, and credit. The bill would also add offenses regarding gender identity or expression to the list of offenses that are subject to treatment as hate crimes. The bill defines gender identity and expression as “a gender-related identity, appearance, expression, or behavior of an individual,
regardless of the individual’s assigned sex at birth.” This is consistent with the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination’s past decisions, as well as Boston’s 2002 transgender
anti-discrimination ordinance. Members of the coalition include MassNOW; ACLU of Massachusetts; Jane Doe, Inc., The Massachusetts Coalition Against Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence; National Association of Social Workers, MA; Mass AFL-CIO; Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders; Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition; MassEquality; the Massachusetts Gay and Lesbian Political Caucus and the Massachusetts LGBTQ Bar Association.

Study Finds Employment Discrimination against Transgender Residents of Massachusetts Costs the State Millions Annually


New Study Finds Employment Discrimination against Transgender Residents of Massachusetts Costs the State Millions Annually

May 11th, 2011

For Immediate Release


Contact: Gunner Scott: 617-778-0519
Kara Suffredini: 617-878-2300


May 11, 2011


BOSTON — A new research study released today by The Williams Institute on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Law and Public Policy shows that employment discrimination against transgender residents of Massachusetts likely costs the state millions of dollars each year. These costs are the result of reduced income tax revenue, expenditures on public assistance programs, and other costs related to an increased need for public assistance programs. The added cost to the Commonwealth for public health insurance coverage alone is $3 million annually due to employment discrimination against transgender workers.


“When transgender people experience employment discrimination, not only can that have a substantial negative impact on people’s lives, but it also affects the Commonwealth financially so all Massachusetts residents pay a price,” said study author Jody L. Herman, the Peter J. Cooper Public Policy Fellow at the Williams Institute. “The legislature is making painful choices as it builds next year’s budget,” said Kara Suffredini, executive director of MassEquality. “This law would not cost the state a dime, but it could bring in millions of revenue and savings each year.”


“Employment discrimination erodes your dignity—and empties your pocketbook. When otherwise qualified people cannot find work solely because of who they are, the state loses money in lost tax revenues and increased expenditures on public programs such as MassHealth,” said Gunner Scott, executive director of the Massachusetts Transgender
Political Coalition.


In calculating the cost to the Commonwealth, the study estimates that 6,600 Massachusetts residents have lost a job, 12,900 were not hired for a job, and 5,600 were denied a promotion, all due to due to anti-transgender bias. Furthermore, 15 percent of surveyed transgender Massachusetts residents made $10,000 or less in annual household income, whereas only 3 percent of the Massachusetts general population made this amount.


Employment discrimination can lead to lost wages and the need to access public assistance programs to replace lost income and health insurance coverage. This study estimates that the Commonwealth may be losing millions in income tax revenues each year due to employment discrimination. In addition, the Commonwealth is spending nearly $3 million every year in public health insurance coverage for those who have lost jobs due to anti-transgender bias.


View or download the report

See press coverage


###

About the Transgender Equal Rights Coalition
The Transgender Equal Rights Coalition is working to pass “An Act Relative to Transgender Equal Rights.” (House Bill 502 and Senate Docket Number 536). This law would add gender identity and expression to existing Massachusetts civil rights laws, which currently prohibit
discrimination on the basis of age, race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, sex, and marital status in the areas of employment, housing, public accommodations, education, and credit. The bill would also add offenses regarding gender identity or expression to the list of offenses that are subject to treatment as hate crimes. The bill defines gender identity and expression as “a gender-related identity, appearance, expression, or behavior of an individual,
regardless of the individual’s assigned sex at birth.” This is consistent with the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination’s past decisions, as well as Boston’s 2002 transgender
anti-discrimination ordinance. Members of the coalition include MassNOW; ACLU of Massachusetts; Jane Doe, Inc., The Massachusetts Coalition Against Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence; National Association of Social Workers, MA; Mass AFL-CIO; Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders; Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition; MassEquality; the Massachusetts Gay and Lesbian Political Caucus and the Massachusetts LGBTQ Bar Association.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

CONNECTICUT - vote expected on transgender equal rights bill TODAY or TOMORROW


GLADbanner

Dear Mycroft,

HB 6599: An Act Concerning Discrimination - which would add gender identity to Connecticut's anti-discrimination law - could face its most difficult hurdle as soon as today. We expect the House to vote on the bill eithertoday, Wednesday, May 11 or tomorrow, Thursday, May 12.

Please take a moment right now to follow these quick and easy steps to contact your legislator. Even if your state rep has already heard from you, we must remind them until they vote that HB 6599 must become law in 2011. Once you've followed the steps, please forward this email to your pro-equality friends and family.

Click here to take action and give HB 6599 the push it needs!

If you have any questions or concerns, or need assistance, please emailSally Tamarkin or call 860-247-6090. To learn more, visitwww.ctequality.com.

Thank you,

Gary Buseck signature

Gary Buseck

Acting Executive Director



CT State Capitol

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