Michael Lavers

Michael K. Lavers is the international news editor of the Washington Blade.

Members of Congress Call Upon White House to Implement Bostock Ruling

More than 100 members of Congress on Thursday called upon President Trump to implement last month's U.S. Supreme Court decision that says Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 bans anti-LGBTQ employment discrimination. "In light of the Supreme [...]

Wedding Photographer Files Federal Lawsuit Against Va. Nondiscrimination Law

A Norfolk wedding photographer has filed a federal lawsuit against Virginia's new anti-LGBTQ discrimination law. The lawsuit, which the Alliance Defending Freedom, an anti-LGBTQ legal group, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern [...]

Virginia Nondiscrimination Bill Takes Effect

A bill that adds sexual orientation and gender identity to Virginia's nondiscrimination law took effect on Wednesday. The Democrat-controlled General Assembly earlier this year approved the Virginia Values Act. Governor Ralph Northam signed it into [...]

House Approves Bill to Designate Pulse Nightclub a National Memorial

The U.S. House of Representatives on Friday approved a bill that would designate the Pulse nightclub as a national memorial. A press release that U.S. Reps. Darren Soto, Val Demings, and Stephanie Murphy released notes House Resolution 3094 "grants [...]

Egyptian Activist Arrested for Raising Rainbow Flag at Concert Dies by Suicide

An LGBTQ rights activist from Egypt who was arrested for raising a rainbow flag during a 2017 concert died by suicide on Sunday. Al-Jazeera reports Sara Hegazy, 30, died at her home in Canada. Egyptian authorities in September 2017 [...]

Costa Rica Becomes First Central America Country with Marriage Equality

Costa Rica on Tuesday became the first country in Central America to extend marriage rights to same-sex couples. Two women became the first same-sex couple to legally marry in Costa Rica when they tied the knot in a ceremony that took place in the [...]

Family of Transgender Woman Who Died in ICE Custody Files Federal Lawsuit

The family of a transgender woman with HIV who died in U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement custody in 2018 has filed a federal lawsuit against five private companies that were responsible for her care. The Transgender Law Center and [...]

South Korea Activists Form Task Force to Fight Coronavirus-Fueled Discrimination

A group of activists in South Korea have formed a task force to fight anti-LGBTQ discrimination related to the coronavirus pandemic. Sung-Uk So on Thursday told the Washington Blade in an email that seven LGBTQ advocacy groups decided to form Queer [...]

Puerto Rico Government Sharply Criticized Over Response to LGBTQ Murders

Dozens of activists and advocacy groups have sharply criticized the government of Puerto Rico over its response to the murders of several LGBTQ people on the island. Pedro Julio Serrano, founder of Puerto Rico Para Tod@s, a Puerto Rican LGBTQ [...]

HRC Lays Off 22 Employees Due to Coronavirus

The Human Rights Campaign on Tuesday laid off 22 employees because of the coronavirus pandemic. HRC told the Washington Blade that Alphonso David, the organization's president, "personally reached out to every single person affected to see how he [...]

Trump Executive Order to Suspend US Immigration for 60 Days

Advocacy groups on Tuesday sharply criticized President Trump over his executive order that will effectively stop immigration into the U.S. "In light of the attack from the Invisible Enemy, as well as the need to protect the jobs of our great [...]

White House: ICE to Consider Release of Vulnerable Detainees on 'Case-By-Case' Basis

Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Chad Wolf on Wednesday did not specifically say whether U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement would consider releasing detainees who are at heightened risk for the coronavirus. "In some cases, we do need to [...]