In the wake of the massacre at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, 1,000 people marched in Burlington, Vermont — and in numerous other cities — in solidarity with LGBTQ people. Achieving marriage equality was a milestone, but the struggle for LGBTQ rights continues. As the New York Times reports, “Since the marriage ruling, several Republican-led state legislatures and Republican governors and federal lawmakers have redoubled their fight against legal protections for people on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. So far this year, more than 200 anti-L.G.B.T. bills have been introduced in 34 states.” Kim Fountain, executive director of the Pride Center of Vermont, a “comprehensive community center dedicated to advancing community and the health and safety of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer (LGBTQ) Vermonters,” speaks about larger effort to achieve safety, dignity and acceptance of LGBTQ people. (June 15, 2016 broadcast)
1 in every 4 women will experience domestic violence in her lifetime. Vermont’s domestic violence agencies served nearly 9,000 victims of abuse in 2012 and fielded over 12,000 hotline calls. Janice Santiago talks about her work with Women Helping Battered Women, which assists domestic abuse victims in Chittenden County. She speaks about her own experience with domestic abuse and the face of domestic violence in Vermont today.
“His True Self”: A transgender Vermonter’s story
Jesse Ray Thomas is a 20-year old transgender person in St. Albans who was recently profiled in a moving story by Natalie Handy in the St. Albans Messenger, “His True Self.” Jesse speaks about his challenge growing up transgender in Vermont, the emotional struggles and suicidal thoughts that he and other trans youth often have, and his joy at embracing his true identity.
Affording college:Scott Giles, president of the Vermont Student AssistanceCorp. (VSAC); Pam McNulty, TIAA CREFF, and Rich Westman, who oversees the 529 college savings plan for VSAC, discuss how Vermont students and families can save and pay for college.
Voices of LGBTQ Vermonters: Ariel Goodman and Eloise Reid traveled the state to record
the stories and experiences of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer
(LGBTQ) Vermonters. This broadcast includes an edited version 23 minute version of their piece. The full 28 minute version of this audio documentary and the website can be found here.