poetics, time, body disruption and marginally queer solutions

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

U.S. agency tries to cut 'LGBT' from panel
Christopher Curtis, PlanetOut Network

A government agency is under fire after trying to remove the words "gay," "lesbian," "bisexual" and "transgender" from the program of a federally funded conference on suicide prevention.

The program was originally titled "Suicide Prevention Among Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Individuals." It is a part of a Feb. 28 conference in Portland, Ore., sponsored by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), which is part of the Department of Health and Human Services.

Ron Bloodworth, one of three specialists leading the session, told the Washington Post that SAMHSA project manager Brenda Bruun wanted him to delete the four words that described exactly what the session was about.

Instead Bloodworth was told to use the term "sexual orientation," a suggestion he found ridiculous. "Everyone has a sexual orientation," he explained to the Post. "But this was about gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgenders."


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