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Workplace Nondiscrimination Executive Order Brings Protections to More, But Not All

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I didn’t want to let the day pass without an acknowledgment of the historic signing by President Obama of an executive order to ban federal contractors from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. The order also added “gender identity” to an executive order of President Clinton that banned discrimination against federal employees on the basis of sexual orientation. Today’s order will directly benefit many LGBTQ people and their families — but it isn’t enough.

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English Soccer Star: “Why Being a Gay Mum Can Help My England Career”

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Think you’re a soccer mom? Casey Stoney, who captained England’s football (soccer) team in the last Olympics, is expecting twins with her partner Megan Harris, who was also a professional player. Now THEY are going to be soccer moms.

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Melissa Harris-Perry on Motherhood, Marriage Equality

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MSNBC’s Melissa Harris-Perry, who has a new baby, spoke recently with ThinkProgress about motherhood and the need for better policies for working parents. As usual, she says a lot of on-target, sensible things — but I have to amend her on one point.

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Creating Change as an LGBT Parent

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Heading to the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force’s Creating Change conference in Houston, Texas brought with it a host of questions.

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What Married and Unmarried Same-Sex Parents Should Know About Family Leave

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The U.S. Department of Labor has issued new guidance that confirms married same-sex couples are now eligible for the same leave as married different-sex couples under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). That’s one of the very concrete Good Things to happen since the U.S. Supreme Court ruled on DOMA — although I’d argue that all committed couples should be eligible, married or not. Unmarried same-sex parents should note, however, that they still have some rights under FMLA.

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ExxonMobile Votes Against LGBT Protections. Where Will You Buy Gas?

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Yesterday, ExxonMobil shareholders for the 14th year in a row rejected a resolution to add sexual orientation and gender identity and expression to the company’s Equal Employment Opportunity policy—a policy that had been in place in the Mobil corporation before its merger with Exxon. And in a test conducted by LGBT group Freedom to Work, the company called back a less-qualified applicant over a more-qualified one, with the main difference in their resumes being that the latter volunteered with an LGBT-rights organization. So where will you fill up to take the kids to soccer practice?

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Did You Know? Same-Sex Parents Can Take FMLA Leave Even If Not Legal Parent

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Today is the 20th anniversary of the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), so it’s the perfect time to remind folks that FMLA allows people to take time off to care for a child (biological or adoptive) who is legally the child of a same-sex partner—that is, even if you are not on the child’s birth certificate or haven’t done a second-parent adoption. Here’s the story of two lesbian moms who used FMLA leave, despite having to be extra prepared to explain matters to their employer.

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Wanted: Your Family and Medical Leave Stories

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Twenty years ago, on February 5, 1993, President Bill Clinton signed the Family and Medical Leave Act, allowing eligible employees to take time off to care for new children (biological or adopted) or family members with medical problems. The FMLA even allows employees to take time for a new child even if you are not the legal parent—but does not cover same-sex spouses or partners. The Family Equality Council is therefore collecting stories, good and bad, about how LGBT people have used—or been denied—FMLA. They want yours! Here’s how to submit your story.

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Victories Big and Small

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I think most of the LGBT community in the U.S. is celebrating the election results this week, and rightly so. As we revel in the amazing reality of four states voting the right way on marriage equality, we should nevertheless remember that these political victories are only the tip of the iceberg. They rest on the everyday victories of LGBT people and our families—the courage that we find to make ourselves visible, changing hearts and minds one person at a time. I was reminded of this by a post over at The Adventures of K & D, a lesbian couple in Florida.

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My New Job with the SEED Project on Inclusive Curriculum

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There are big changes afoot here at the House of Mombian. I’m delighted to report that I’ve just taken a part-time job as the Online Content Manager for the SEED Project on Inclusive Curriculum, a 26-year-old diversity program that helps educators “examine contemporary scholarship as well as ‘the textbooks of our lives’ in order to inform community conversation about schooling and culture.” It explores gender, race, culture, sexual orientation, and other aspects of identity, and prepares educators to bring their learnings back to their own schools.

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Working Is Funny

I’m off to moderate a parenting panel—”Our communities, our careers and our families: Being an LGBT parent in the workplace”—at theOut and Equal Workplace Summit.

Because I have workplace issues on my mind, I thought I’d ask all of you:

Please share your funniest (or most memorable) experience of being a parent in the workplace—or of transitioning to become a stay-at-home parent.

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We’re Out, We’re (Becoming) Equal, and We’re in LA

Two lesbian moms, a transgender parent, and a gay dad walk into a room. . . .

No, it’s not the start of a joke, it’s the start of a discussion panel on LGBT parenting that I will be moderating during the Out and Equal Workplace Summit at the Los Angeles Convention Center. The parenting session, “Our communities, our careers and our families: Being an LGBT parent in the workplace,” will be October 6, 3:00 to 5:30 p.m.

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Cat Cora on Cover of Working Mother

Funny how things happen. Just days after my family and I ate at Cat Cora’s new restaurant in Disney World, I find out (thanks, Debbie!) that she’s on the cover of the current issue of Working Mother. While it’s just her and one of her sons on the cover, there’s a nice picture of her, […]

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Going to the Out and Equal Workplace Summit?

I’m honored to announce that I will be moderating a discussion panel on LGBT parenting at this year’s Out and Equal Workplace Summit. The Summit runs October 5-8 at the Los Angeles Convention Center. The parenting session, “Our communities, our careers and our families: Being an LGBT parent in the workplace,” will be October 6, […]

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Cat Cora to Receive Alumna of the Year Award at CIA

Cat Cora, the Food Network’s “Iron Chef,” will be honored tonight as “Alumna of the Year” by her alma mater, the Culinary Institute of America (CIA) at the CIA Leadership Awards (“Augie Awards”) in New York City. Cat and her partner Jennifer welcomed their fourth son last July, with Cat giving birth to him not […]

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Wanted: Your Experience with Paid or Unpaid Parental Leave

I’m passing along this request for your comments (and possible participation in an interview) about paid and unpaid parental leave. I’m not involved in the project, but I think it’s vital to have LGBT voices heard in studies like these. Human Rights Watch, a nongovernmental human rights group, is interviewing parents (including LGBT parents) about […]

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Work/Life Balance and the LGBT Community

A couple of weeks ago, I had the pleasure of participating in Fem 2.0’s “Work/Life in Our Communities Blog Radio Series” as part of a panel on “Work/Life and LGBT Families: Reimagining Policy for ALL Families in the 21st Century.” The radio series is part of their larger 2010 Wake Up! Campaign, which also includes […]

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Work/Life and LGBT Families on Fem 2.0 Radio Today

Work/life balance is an issue near and dear to many of our hearts. Achieving that balance can be even tougher for LGBT people, who may have to contend with a variety of unfriendly laws, policies, and attitudes. I’ll be speaking this afternoon on Fem 2.0′s “Work/Life in Our Communities Blog Radio Series” as part of […]

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COLAGE Is Hiring

I’m passing this message along from the folks at COLAGE, who are hiring for a couple of positions. I also want to offer outgoing Program Director Meredith Fenton my best wishes for her future endeavors. She was a great help in promoting Blogging for LGBT Families Day among COLAGErs and has always been willing to […]

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Marriage Recognized in D.C.? Act Now for Benefits

Here’s a little piece of advice for families living in Washington, D.C.: The city recently passed laws recognizing same-sex couples who were married or legally partnered in a “substantially similar” way outside the District. HRC warns people, though that if you are already hitched and want to cover your spouse or partner through your employer’s […]

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“She Got Me Pregnant”: Episode 62

Helen and I do what everyone seems to be doing this week, and debrief on The L Word. We offer a parenting twist, however, and show how our own career paths as mothers have paralleled those of Bette and Tina (though without the high salaries and glamour). What does this say about lesbian parents in […]

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Philanthropy and Family a Sweet Combination

(Originally published with slight variation in Bay Windows.) For Jen Rainin, creating a lesbian travel company based on the idea of giving back to the world was an extension of her role as a philanthropist, but also a way to convey positive values to her children. Rainin is one of the founders of Sweet, which […]

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Staying at Home vs. Outside Employment

Nina over at Queercents has posted her thoughts on Leslie Bennetts’ The Feminine Mistake: Are We Giving Up Too Much?, a book that warns women of the financial risks of staying home as full-time caregivers. The book spawned much controversy when it first came out, with the media hyping it as part of the “Mommy […]

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HRC Tackles FMLA for LGBT

I’ve written before about how the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) leaves same-sex families behind. Looks like HRC is stepping up to the plate here: The DoL [Department of Labor] issued a notice that they plan to make changes to some of the regulations governing how the FMLA is administered—and asked groups to comment. […]

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Mary Cheney Shows Heart

Lesbian mom Mary Cheney has joined the Board of Directors of the Richard B. and Lynne V. Cheney Cardiovascular Institute. I’m guessing it wasn’t a rigorous interview process. The press release says “As a director, she will help to form the strategic direction for the Institute.” This is in addition to her work as Vice […]

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