Tuesday, December 09, 2008

FLORIDA DIGEST December 09, 2008

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Hopefully!!!! We're back. If we don't show up with Ray's List, you'll know it isn't for lack of trying.

Ray and Michael


Take action to save Domestic Partnerships in Miami-Beach
As of November 4th Floridians live in a state whose constitution contains the discriminatory Amendment that is positioned to threaten not only the passing of equal rights legislation in the future, but existing rights as well. The so-called "marriage protection amendment" was written so that it could be used as the means, not to prevent gay marriage (which was already illegal in Florida), but to prevent and make illegal any measure to attain relationship recognition from the state. In Tampa, we are already seeing the early stages of the city's domestic partnership policy being challenged because of the passage of Amendment 2. As we wait to see what happens in Tampa, elected officials in the City of Miami Beach are stepping up and being pro-active. The City of Miami Beach has a Domestic Partnership Policy that hundreds of people rely on for the benefits and security. With this in mind the Mayor and commissioners of the City of Miami Beach will vote on a resolution (Click here to read the resolution) to reaffirm their support on its Domestic Partnership Policy. Here's how you can help. Residents of the City of Miami Beach, please make your voices and opinions heard by the mayor and commissioners, by attending the City of Miami Beach Commission's meeting.
Date - December 10th
Time - 10:00 a.m.
Place- City Commission Chambers,
3rd Floor, City Hall
1700 Convention Center Drive
Miami Beach
Please also consider writing a letter of support to the mayor and commissioners. Below you'll find a link to download a letter of support that can be customized to reflect the sender and recipient. Below we have also provided a link where you can locate all the contact information for the mayor and commissioners of the City of Miami Beach. Thank you for your support. Link to downloadable letter of support:
Link to City of Miami Beach website: http://web.miamibeachfl.gov/elected/
And just for good measure, carbon copy savedade@savedade.org so that we know you've done your part.

Dolphin Democrats Annual Holiday Party
Wednesday - December 10 - 7:30-9:30 pm
Wilton Station Clubhouse
2605 NE 14th Ave - Wilton Manors FL
Donation - $10
Free with your paid renewal or 2009 membership

2008 Annual Holiday BASH!
Sunday December 14, 2008 2-6pm
GLCC ~ Fort Lauderdale
Parents, wanna-be parents, family & friends ALL are welcome.
1717 N Andrews Ave (just s. of Oakland Park Blvd on west side)
International buffet, dessert extravaganza, our Famous holiday Crafts table for the kids, Santa, Hanukkah Harry and so much more. Bring a dish to share. Appetizer, Entrée, Side, or Dessert. Every parent MUST bring 1 labeled gift for each of their children. (under $10.00) labeled and wrapped.
If you are willing and able to help with other items needed, please contact mikeyg75@aol.com for a list of options; ie: coolers, ice, soda, set ups, decorations…. And lots more!

The Human Rights Campaign Presents the 3rd Annual
Winterfest Boat Parade PartyMain Event - 7:00pm - Midnight
Please join us for a wonderful evening of heavy hors d'oeuvres, complimentary cocktails, live entertainment, fireworks, and of course, the most unique parade around! Your ticket is also your HRC annual membership!
Suggested Attire: South Florida Chic
General Admission: Pre-Registration $95 / Onsite $125
Ticket Includes: Food, Drink, Live Entertainment, Fireworks and Annual

The State of Florida currently sends a dangerous message that the health and well being of gay youth is of no concern to state officials. This can no longer stand. Please contact your state representative and senator today and ask them to co-sponsor Rep. Evan Jenne’s Florida House of Representatives bill, HB 19, and Sen. Jeremy Ring’s Senate bill, SB 268, which will delete the following language from the Florida State Statute requiring, with regard to instruction in HIV/AIDS, that a school shall: Section 1003.46, Subsection (2)(a) Teach abstinence from sexual activity outside of marriage as the expected standard for all school age students while teaching the benefits of monogamous heterosexual marriage. With new infections rising among gay and bisexual males, especially in youth of color, heterosexist language designed to ignore gay youth, and intimidate HIV/AIDS prevention educators, must end. To find out your Senator and Representative contact information

Safe Schools South Florida Participates in National Safe Schools Roundtable
Safe Schools South Florida participated in the recent National Safe Schools Roundtable in Washington, D.C., - a gathering that brought together a select group of 35 representatives of organizations from throughout the United States to discuss and strategize around the Safe Schools movement that is becoming a more dynamic element of change in public education for gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and questioning youth. Safe Schools South Florida trainer and Miami-Dade County Public School counselor Lisa La Monica represented the organization at the roundtable, and Safe Schools South Florida was the only organization represented from Florida at the roundtable.

Go to this link for the following articles:

-Florida AG prepares appeal in gay adoption case
The Florida Attorney General’s office is preparing to appeal a ruling by a Miami judge striking down the state ban on adoptions by gays and lesbians.

National Gay News
Go to this link for the following articles:

- Former Florida Rep. Bob Allen, Loses Another Appeal
A former Republican lawmaker convicted of soliciting an undercover officer for oral sex has lost another appeal. The 5th District Court of Appeal denied former state Rep. Bob Allen's appeal on Friday. Authorities say Allen agreed to pay $20 to perform oral sex on an undercover police officer in a men's restroom at a park. Allen maintains his innocence. Read More...


Fort Report
Go to the links for the following articles:

-Inquiry urged into remains buried at school for boys
Former residents of the Florida School for Boys recounted painful memories while pushing the state to investigate the unmarked graves at the school and identify the bodies. Convinced the 32 unmarked graves at the Florida School for Boys in Marianna are the bodies of boys abused and killed there decades ago, four former residents of the school are demanding the governor and state and federal attorneys investigate.

-Wasserman Schultz to head Dems’ incumbent retention
Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.) was handed perhaps the most important vice chairmanship in the Democratic Congressional Campaign Commmittee (DCCC)on Monday, taking on incumbent retention in the cycle ahead.

-Thurman to Crist: Refund taxpayers for Europe trip
Responding to a Sun-Sentinel story Sunday about Gov. Crist's European trade trip costing Florida taxpayers $430,000 -- $180,000 more than had been estimated -- state Democratic Chairwoman Karen Thurman called on the governor to reimburse the state for what she calls a "taxpayer-financed vacation." Her press release/letter to Crist: As you know, Florida is facing a major budget crisis. After cutting billions of dollars from vital education, healthcare and public safety programs last year -- cuts that hurt Floridians struggling to get by during these tough economic times -- our state still faces larger and ballooning deficits.

-U.S. Sugar approves sale of 181,000 acres to Florida
The board of directors of U.S. Sugar voted Monday to approve a $1.3-billion deal to sell 181,000 acres to the state for Everglades restoration.

-Panel nominates 5 judges for Fla. Supreme Court
A state panel Monday nominated five judges, including a woman and a Hispanic man for a Florida Supreme Court opening. The Supreme Court Judicial Nominating Commission sent the names to Gov. Charlie Crist. He will appoint a replacement for Justice Harry Lee Anstead, 71, who is retiring in January when his current six-year term ends.

-Hastings, Wexler blast Haiti deportations
Two Palm Beach area congressmen denounced on Monday a decision to resume U.S. deportations to Haiti. Reps. Alcee Hastings and Robert Wexler, both Democrats, said the policy was further punishing a country that has been ravaged by hurricanes and food crises.


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