Queer Prom 2019 in Rockford on June 8

ROCKFORD — DiversCity Youth Group in Rockford is holding a Queer Prom on Saturday, June 8. From the Facebook event:
Enjoy a night of dancing, drag performances, refreshments and fun! Come alone, with friends, or bring a companion of your choice. This event is free but don’t forget to RSVP! Register at this Google Form:

Thank you to our amazing sponsors:
– In Youth We Trust Grant
– PFLAG Rockford
– Rockford Public Library
– DJ Krysta
The party starts at 6 p.m.

Rockford-area Methodists protest anti-LGBTQ vote

ROCKFORD — United Methodist churches in the Rockford area are pushing back against the denomination’s vote to keep and strengthen anti-LGBTQ rules. The Rockford Register-Star reported that a group of Methodist ministers gathered at State Street and Alpine Road with signs showing their support for LGBTQ members. The action comes one day after the denomination’s international conference voted to reject the One Church policy that would have let regions and churches set their own LGBTQ policies. Instead, the conservative Traditional Plan, which no only keep bans on same-sex marriages in the church and LGBTQ clergy but also requires stronger enforcement. We’ll update as we hear more.

LGBTQ Inclusive Care Panel Discussion in Rockford

ROCKFORD — PFLAG Rockford will be hosting a discussion on LGBTQ healthcare at the UIC College of Medicine Partner’s Pavilion in Rockford on Monday, Feb. 25. From the Facebook event:
We welcome you to a panel discussion about LGBTQ+ healthcare so we can make this better for everyone involved! The LGBTQ+ & Allies group at UIC aims to improve LGBTQ+ medical education and cultural competency. This panel will help us determine what those gaps currently are and how we can improve them in order to better LGBTQ+ healthcare.

Prtizker signs exec order to restore HIV funding

ROCKFORD — Gov. J.B. Pritzker, a Democrat, signed an executive order restoring public health funding for HIV care. From the State Journal-Register of Springfield:
He signed an executive order to expand access to the medicine known as PrEP, or pre-exposure prophylaxis, which can reduce the chances of getting HIV. PrEP funding was a casualty of the state budget impasse. The order also increases funding for HIV testing, the African American HIV/AIDS Response Act and other public health initiatives. “That’s what we’re here to do — to eradicate the HIV epidemic.

Coming Out Day – Shatter The Fear in Rockford

ROCKFORD — PFLAG Rockford Chapter will be giving people a chance release their frustrations for National Coming Out Day on Thursday, Oct. 11. From their Facebook event:
Have you ever been so frustrated you just want to smash something? As we know, coming out can be a joyous occasion! Although, this is not the case for everyone.

HRC: Naperville the least LGBTQ-friendly city in Illinois

CHICAGO — The Human Rights Campaign released its annual Municipal Equality Index (MEI) this week. The index rates the largest cities in each state on local laws and policies for LGBTQ. In Illinois, Chicago came in as the most friendly city in the state while Naperville, the fifth largest in the state and one of the largest in the Chicago metro region, came in last. A record 68 cities earned perfect scores for advancing LGBTQ-inclusive policies and practices — up from 60 in 2016, 47 in 2015 and 11 in 2012, the first year of the MEI. Chicago was the only city in the state to get 100.

Illinois comes out to march for women

CHICAGO — While Chicago had the largest in the state, and one of the largest in the country, sister marches to the Women’s March on Washington took place across Illinois, including traditionally conservative cities. The Chicago Tribune reported that about 250,000 people flooded into downtown to participate in the march. Organizers originally expected 40,000 when they first announced plans and increased it to 70,000 by Friday. The crowd got so large that the march through the Loop had to be cancelled- the crowd had filled the entire route of the march. The rally still took place.