LGBTQ

University of Wyoming


Part of the University of Wyoming's mission is to value and nurture diversity. But that's hard to do when the university struggles to attract and retain faculty and administrators of color. To help, Dr. Emily Monago was hired as UW's chief diversity officer three years ago.

Shannon Lastowski Monahan

On a crisp late fall afternoon, Colin Monahan and Shannon Lastowski Monahan were about to relax after a nice dinner with friends at their home in Wapiti, about 20 miles west of Cody towards Yellowstone National Park.

The U.S. Supreme Court has officially declined to take up the case of a transgender inmate in Idaho who sued state officials to get sex reassignment surgery.


Tate McKinney

In his teens, Tate McKinney started coming to terms with his sexual orientation and gender identity. Like many LGBTQ kids in small towns, that led to hard conversations with his family, but then he found out he was related to Aaron McKinney, one of Matthew Shepard's murderers.

Wyoming Public Radio's Melodie Edwards sat down with Tate to hear his uniquely Wyoming story. Tate came forward to share his story after hearing the episode "The Small Town Drag Queen" on The Modern West podcast about the hardship of growing up LGBTQ in the rural West.

This week's Supreme Court ruling shielding LGBTQ employees from discrimination effectively evens out a patchwork of protections in the Mountain West.


In July, a transgender woman in Idaho will make history. 

Adree Edmo will become the first trans inmate in the nation to receive gender confirmation surgery through a court order. Edmo's legal case went all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, and now, a ruling in her favor stands as precedent in the 9th Circuit. 

In a 7-2 ruling, the United States Supreme Court has denied Idaho’s appeal to halt the sex reassignment surgery of a transgender inmate.

Angus Thuermer


Being gay in Wyoming can be challenging, but LGBTQ activist, and performing artist, Andrew Munz has decided to stay and try to make things better. Wyoming Public Radio's Megan Feighery spoke to Munz about art, activism, and growing up in the cowboy state.

The Mountain West News Bureau, in collaboration with the Boise State Public Radio newsroom, has won a regional 2020 Edward R. Murrow Award for its investigative podcast LOCKED.

BENSON KUA VIA CREATIVE COMMONS ATTRIBUTION-SHARE ALIKE 2.0


The pandemic has highlighted who has support and who doesn't. Wyoming Public Radio's Maggie Mullen spoke with Wyoming State Representative and Executive Director of Wyoming Equality's Sara Burlingame about what life looks like for many LGBTQ folks across the state. Burlingame said if you've got things like a job, family support, and acceptance in your community, you might be doing ok right now, and hunkering down like a lot of your neighbors.

Courtesy of Wyoming AIDS Assistance

If not for the coronavirus, this month would have seen the return of Drag Queen Bingo to Laramie. The fundraiser, which draws hundreds of people each year, was rescheduled for October. The bingo is hosted by the Stilettos, and raises money to help Wyomingites living with HIV and AIDS. Wyoming Public Radio's Jeff Victor spoke with Jim Osborn, who performs with the Stilettos as Martina, or Marti Gras.

State officials from around the country, including four in the Mountain West, have signed a letter to the Food and Drug Administration asking the agency to make it easier for more people to donate blood.

Some potential donors have to practice months of abstinence before they can give blood. The rule only applies to certain people — namely, men who have sex with men. It also applies to women who’ve had sex with men who have, in turn, had sex with other men.

This week the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed its decision in the case of Idaho inmate Adree Edmo, the transgender woman who sued the state to be provided sex reassignment surgery.

Alex Myers

A new novel tells the story of a newly-out transgender Harvard student who has to give everything up when his family and girlfriend reject him. He's broke and looking for a new start—so he heads to Wyoming. Continental Divide is partly based on the real-life experiences of author Alex Myers, who was the first openly transgender student at Harvard. He talked with Wyoming Public Radio's Erin Jones about Wyoming, masculinity, and writing a new kind of fiction.

A report published last week graded 506 cities around the U.S. on how inclusive their towns are to the LGBTQ community, and cities in the Mountain West are all over the map.

 


On the heels of Colorado becoming the 18th state to ban “conversion therapy” earlier this year, Utah’s debating the widely discredited practice meant to change an individual’s sexual orientation or gender expression.

The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday began hearing cases on employment protections for LGBTQ workers, and conservative Justice Neil M. Gorsuch, who hails from Colorado, is likely the deciding vote.

The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that the state of Idaho must provide sex reassignment surgery to inmate Adree Edmo.


McCormick Junior High

In March, racist and homophobic flyers were passed out by students at McCormick Junior High School to members of the school's Gay Straight Alliance club. It was the latest, but far from the only instance of bullying to take place at the Cheyenne school. And it put the school under a spotlight.

Charles Fournier

June is Pride Month. So this first installation of the "Belonging" series is a conversation between Connor Sears and Jesse Archambeau. They're both 2018 Cheyenne East High School grads who left for college in Peoria, Illinois where a more prominent LGBTQ community has helped them to foster their own identities. Now, they struggle with the reality that their absences perpetuate a trend that leaves Wyoming's queer youth without the mentorship they themselves yearned for.


Photo by Benson Kua via Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0

Layha Spoonhunter and Ashlynn Kercher have never met, but they've been fighting for the same cause: LGBTQ equality and visibility. For their activism, the Advocate magazine named the Wyoming residents among their 104 Champions of Pride list for 2019.

Tennessee Watson / Wyoming Public Radio

Community members gathered in Cheyenne Thursday evening to discuss next steps following incidents of racism and homophobia at McCormick Junior High. The incidents involved reports of ongoing bullying directed at students of color and LGBTQ students. Posters were found around the school with racist and homophobic language at the end of March.

pixabay.com

Parents in Cheyenne told Wyoming Public Radio they heard from school administrators, and through their children that rainbow flags -- a symbol of LGBTQ pride and inclusion -- were being banned in Laramie County School District #1.

wikipedia.org

Laramie County School District #1 is still struggling to respond to racism and homophobia following an incident in late March. Posters attacking gay students and celebrating the Ku Klux Klan were found in the halls of McCormick Junior High in Cheyenne. In response, LGBTQ students and their allies carried Pride flags to send a message of inclusion.

Dionne Poulton/University of Wyoming

A spring snowstorm is keeping some speakers for this year's Shepard Symposium from arriving at the University of Wyoming campus, but event organizers say that won't keep the show from going on.

Screenshot provided by Kaycee Cook

According to a statement released by Laramie County School District #1, an incident involving racism and homophobia is under investigation. On Wednesday posters targeting black and LGBTQ students were found on the walls at McCormick Junior High in Cheyenne.

Provided by Wyoming Equality

A Cheyenne junior high was the target of hate speech Wednesday. Racist and homophobic posters discovered at McCormick Junior High have students concerned for their safety.

 A federal appeals panel has granted the state of Idaho’s request to postpone sex reassignment surgery for a transgender inmate. The inmate’s case now awaits a decision from the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.  

Lynn Hutchings

A State Senator released a statement denying that she ever compared homosexuality with bestiality or pedophilia.

Lynn Hutchings

The Wyoming legislature is moving into its final three weeks. Wyoming Public Radio's Caroline Ballard checked in with Bob Beck about the latest news, including budget discussions and controversial remarks made by Senator Lynn Hutchings.

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