GLAD is Wicked Proud of Its History

The History of GLAD. In this photo: GLAD in 1979.
Photo: GLAD
The History of GLAD. In this photo: GLAD in 1979.   Photo: GLAD

The History of GLAD. In this photo: GLAD in 1979.
Photo: GLAD

BOSTON, Mass.—To celebrate the 2015 Pride season, Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders (GLAD) has produced an interactive timeline of its history at www.glad.org/about/history.

“The timeline celebrates our movement’s history, appreciates our courageous plaintiffs, and, we hope, educates people about LGBT rights,” said Janson Wu, Executive Director of GLAD. [pullquote]The timeline points to GLAD’s storied victories, such as bringing the Goodridge case which led to marriage equality in Massachusetts, winning federal protections at the Supreme Court for people living with HIV, and suing the IRS to allow transgender people to deduct transition-related medical expenses.[/pullquote]

The timeline points to GLAD’s storied victories, such as bringing the Goodridge case which led to marriage equality in Massachusetts, winning federal protections at the Supreme Court for people living with HIV, and suing the IRS to allow transgender people to deduct transition-related medical expenses.

But it also provides a window into lesser-known skirmishes, such as:

  • Kiss-in: in 1991, GLAD represented Queer Nation after its members were ejected from Stocks and Bonds, a Boston Bar during a kiss-in, a Night Out visibility action.
  • School Censorship: GLAD won a 1995 censorship battle with a MA school district over a photo exhibit on lesbian and gay families.
  • Gay Pride: GLAD successfully defended a man charged with disorderly conduct in 1979 when he posted flyers about the Gay Pride Parade.
  • Boy Scouts: In BSA v. Wyman, GLAD successfully sued to bar the Boy Scouts from a Connecticut state employee fundraising campaign because of the Boy Scouts’ anti-gay policies.
  • 9/11: In In re Nancy Walsh, GLAD won compensation from the September 11 Victim Compensation Fund for a woman who lost her partner on American Airlines Flight 11.

Founded in 1978 in response to a bathroom-based police sting operation at the Boston Public Library, GLAD has been active in every aspect of the contemporary LGBT movement, from the AIDS epidemic to the “gayby boom,” from transgender rights to community-police relations.

Through strategic litigation, public policy advocacy, and education, Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders works in New England and nationally to create a just society free of discrimination based on gender identity and expression, HIV status, and sexual orientation.

[From a News Release]

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