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Fast Five Fix: July 11

Queer/trans Bollywood film takes Bangladesh by storm, Calvin Klein turned his ex straight, Canada wins in number of out gays per capita, and Frank Ocean’s new song is going to be your new fav



Its Slurpee day! Speaking of chilly reception, Towleroad says Rep. Barney Frank, who married this weekend, says that — while they’ve not said bad things to him — House Republicans failed to show to the wedding or publicly congratulate him. At least he’s not a Texas Democrat: Dallas Voice says that most of them are passing on the opportunity we reported on earlier this week to fight the anti-gay elephant in Congress’s room, the Defense of Marriage Act. Now here’s all the queer news that fit to regurgitate in bullet form:

  • Autostraddle tells us about the movie taking Bangladesh by storm: ‘Common Gender,’ a Bollywood film about a love story between a “hijra” and a Hindu boy.
  • Maybe fashion designer Calvin Klein is just so incredible in bed, that his ex-boyfriend Nick Gruber knew he could never be satisfied by another man again. Well, for whatever reason he may have, Queerty says that Gruber is back with girls (and a Girls Gone Wild girl at that). How sad, he purrty.
  • Google tells us more about that ‘Legalise Love’ conference and campaign, where they hope to eradicate anti-gay laws in the nations where they have offices so “all of our employees have the same inclusive experience outside of the office as they do at work.”
  • Is Canada more queer (per capita) than the U.S.? A new poll says yes: 5% in the general population and (read to the bottom, talk about a buried lead) 10% of those 18-34 say “Yes I Am” like Melissa Etheridge, says the National Post.
  • Queerty says both queeresque pop icon Lady Gaga and feisty gay porn king Michael Lucas are launching their own social networks. So yeah, that’s happening.

VIDEO | New Frank Ocean performance on Jimmy Fallon debuts new queer love song, first TV performance ever for the newly out rising R&B powerhouse on his first full solo project outside of Odd Future. And its gorgeous. I mean effing gorgeous. Its your new favorite song, no joke.

(h/t JoeMyGod)

“I could never make him love me. I could never make him love me.” Yes, I’m playing this on repeat all day.

Tonight, our friends at Outrage recommend ‘iCandy’ ladies night at MOVA, ‘Smart Ass Trivia’ at Nellie’s, ‘New Meat’ amateur stripper audition at Ziegfeld’s/Secrets or Cobalt karaoke if you need to get over your hump day.


District of Columbia

Bowser’s highest-level adviser resigns after sexual harassment allegation

Female staffer accuses John Falcicchio of longstanding abuse



John Falcicchio (Screen capture via WUSA9)

Lawyers representing a D.C. government employee shook up the city’s political establishment on Monday when they announced that the employee filed a sexual harassment complaint against John Falcicchio, the now former D.C. Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development and Mayor Muriel Bowser’s longtime chief of staff.

The attorneys, Debra Katz and Kayla Morin, did not identify the city employee. 

The announcement by Katz and Morin in a press release came shortly after Mayor Bowser issued her own announcement at a news conference on the same day. The mayor confirmed that Falcicchio’s sudden resignation last Friday, March 17, followed her decision to launch an investigation into allegations against Falcicchio.    

But Bowser said issues surrounding her longtime adviser’s departure amounted to “a sensitive matter that includes privacy concerns” that prevented her from disclosing why she initiated the investigation and why Falcicchio abruptly resigned. 

She said the investigation was being conducted by the city’s Office of Legal Counsel, which is “following established policies and procedures” and that all relevant D.C. government staff members were fully cooperating with the investigation.

“I can also tell you that this investigation does not involve any allegations of improprieties related to business transactions,” Bowser told reporters attending the news conference, which was initially called to celebrate the completion of the city’s 9th Street, N.W. protected bike lane project and to discuss updates on the Capital Bikeshare program.

“I have every confidence in my new chief of staff, Lindsey Parker, and in our new Interim Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development, Keith Anderson,” Bowser said at the news conference. “And I have immense confidence in the 37,000 employees of the D.C. government who will keep us moving forward,” she said.

Parker has served as the city’s chief technology officer since 2019 and as assistant city administrator since 2022. Anderson has served as director of the D.C. Department of General Services, which oversees the city’s buildings and properties.  

“We represent an employee of the District of Columbia who came forward to report serious allegations of sexual harassment by former Chief of Staff and Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development John Falcicchio,” the statement released by attorneys Katz and Morin says.

“It is our understanding that this behavior is longstanding, and our client is cooperating fully with the investigation, which Mayor Bowser initiated immediately,” the statement continues. “Our client is courageous. She came forward to ensure accountability and protect other women,” it says. “Given the gravity of our client’s allegations – which involve unwelcome advances and sexual contact – we ask the media to respect her privacy,” the statement says.

It concludes by encouraging “everyone affected” to contact Maia Ellis, the Associate Director of the Mayor’s Office of Legal Counsel, who’s leading the investigation, at [email protected].

Katz is a founding partner and Morin is an associate of the D.C. law firm Katz Banks Kumin, which specializes in sexual harassment law, whistleblower law, and employment law, according to a write-up on its website.

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Md. Senate approves transgender rights bill

Maryland House of Delegates passed similar measure on Saturday



Md. state Sen. Mary Washington (D-Baltimore City) speaks at a press conference for the Trans Health Equity Act on Feb. 14, 2023. (Washington Blade photo by Linus Berggren)

The Maryland Senate on Monday approved a bill that would require the state’s Medicaid program to cover gender-affirming treatment for transgender people.

Senate Bill 460 or the Trans Health Equity Act passed by a 31-15 vote margin. 

“Requiring, beginning on Jan. 1, 2023, the Maryland Medical Assistance Program to provide gender-affirming treatment in a nondiscriminatory manner; requiring that the gender-affirming treatment be assessed according to nondiscriminatory criteria that are consistent with current clinical standards; prohibiting the issuance of an adverse benefit determination related to gender-affirming treatment unless a certain experienced health care provider has reviewed and confirmed the appropriateness of the determination; etc,” reads a summary of the bill.

The Maryland House of Delegates on Saturday passed a similar measure.

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Md. House of Delegates approves transgender rights bill

State Medicaid program would be required to cover gender-affirming treatment



Md. state Sen. Mary Washington (D-Baltimore City) speaks at a press conference for the Trans Health Equity Act in Annapolis, Md., on Feb. 14, 2023. (Washington Blade photo by Linus Berggren)

The Maryland House of Delegates on Saturday approved a bill that would require the state’s Medicaid program to cover gender-affirming treatment for transgender people.

House Bill 283, or the Trans Health Equity Act, passed by a 93-37 vote margin. The measure now goes before the Maryland Senate.

“Proud that the MD House of Delegates passed the Trans Health Equity Act with such a strong majority,” tweeted state Del. Anne Kaiser (D-Montgomery County), who introduced HB 283.

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