As many of you know my partner Anna Koopman and I were photographed as part of the Living in Limbo: Lesbians in the Deep South photography exhibit that was shown at the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute last year. As a follow-up to this exhibit, Carolyn Sherer the photographer, in conjunction with Michelle Forman, documentary film maker from UAB, are making a documentary film about some of the participants. Anna and I are part of this project as well.
I have invited the filming team to come to the Alliance meeting March 13th of this year because what we have accomplished for the LGBT community at UAB has been fundamental to my ability to remain at UAB and in Alabama. I would like to invite any of you who can to attend the March meeting. Also, as part of the film-makers commitment to privacy if anyone who attends the meeting does not want to be filmed just let me know and I will let the videographer know, and you will not be filmed. Thank you and I hope to see you at the March meeting.
UAB's administration listened when members from the Alliance approached them about the need for "Preferred Name" as an enrollment option for students. This preferred name will be included in class rosters and a variety of other listings, in lieu of their legal first name. While this option will be a happy change to students who prefer to be addressed by their nickname, middle name, etc., this option is particularly important to our transgender students. Otherwise, transgender students are compelled to "out" themselves to every instructor each semester. Thank you UAB!
UAB President Ray L. Watts, M.D. presented the 2013 Scholarship Award to this year's recipient, Stephanie G. Perry, at our third annual scholarship reception. During his remarks, Dr. Watts spoke emphatically on the importance of diversity and equal treatment for all to the success of UAB.
Ms. Perry, a graduate student and employee at UAB, spoke of some of the challenges of being LGBT and of her own decision-making process about how to handle coming out in the workplace.
This event was co-sponsored by the UAB Safe Zone Program, which has very graciously offered to provide refreshments.
The Alliance for LGBT Equality is deeply grateful to Dr. Watts, to the UAB Safe Zone Program, to the UAB Development Office, and to Student Accounting, each of whom played a role in helping to make this event possible.
A collaborative effort between members of The Alliance, members of the Gay/Straight Student Alliance (GSSA) at UAB, and UAB administrators, has resulted in a newly revised "Equal Opportunity and Discriminatory Harassment Policy." This policy includes protections for "gender identity or gender expression" and prohibits discriminatory harassment.
UAB's ongoing commitment to its LGBT community, was underscored by Dr. Garrison in the following YouTube video.
Additional changes at UAB are either completed or are in the works. These include:
The specifics of these changes can be found in Vice President for Equity and Diversity Dr. Louis Dale's letter, dated November 1, 2011.
The Alliance is an employee-resource group at The University of Alabama at Birmingham, the UAB Health System, and the University of Alabama Health Services Foundation. It exists to provide advocacy, support, and networking for faculty and staff members of UAB's Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Allies (LGBTA) community. Membership is open to all. . . more
UAB freshman Jared Allen Bash and senior Bri Nicole Bruce honored as the Alliance's Inaugural Scholarship recipient. . .(more)
Topic: The healthcare needs of members of the LGBT community and of UAB's evolving sensitivity and responsiveness to meeting those needs. There was also some discussion of the workplace climate for UAB's LGBT health care providers. This event was organized by the UASOM MedPride. Several Alliance members served on the panel.
For information about the presenters and links to their presentations. (more)