Saturday, February 28, 2015

Unicorn Booty Salutes Notable Black Bisexuals

Hopefully everyone enjoyed Black History Month!

Black bisexual musician Meshell Ndegeocello (UnicornBooty)

To close it out with a bang, check out UnicornBooty.com's list of Notable Black Bisexuals!  


BiNet USA President Faith Cheltenham joins Dr. Herukhuti, co-editor of Recognize: The Voices of Bisexual Men, Amy Andre, author of HRC's Bisexual Youth Report, ABilly S. Jones-Hennin, Black LGBT pioneer, Travon Free, writer on The Daily Show, Charles Blow, author of the New York Times bestseller Fire Shut Up In My Bones and several others on this outstanding list!

Many thanks to bi writer Harrie Farrow for penning this great piece!


Thursday, February 26, 2015

March is Bisexual Health Awareness Month

March brings us the second annual Bisexual Awareness Month. This year the focus is our mental health. Given our mental health disparity stats this is a much needed resource for our community.




BISEXUAL RESOURCE CENTER DESIGNATES MARCH AS BISEXUAL HEALTH AWARENESS MONTH

The second year of this social media campaign dedicated to raising awareness about the bi community’s mental health disparities

Julia Canfield, MPH, CHES bham@biresource.net


Boston, MA – Recognizing that the bisexual community remains marginalized and underserved, the Bisexual Resource Center (BRC) proudly proclaims March once more as Bisexual Health Awareness Month (BHAM).

Because bisexual individuals report consistently higher levels of depression, suicidality, substance use, anxiety, and other mood disorders compared to their heterosexual, gay and lesbian counterparts, this year’s theme for BHAM is Mental Health. BisexualHealth Awareness Month will engage with the community at large throughout the month of March to raise awareness about these mental health disparities and to push for more action and resources that can better support bisexual individuals.

This year BHAM will incorporate three main values – Intersectionality, Support, and Advocacy – into its campaign to highlight the diverse challenges experienced by the bisexual community, promote bisexual-specific resources, and propose interventions to decrease mental health disparities. The BRC will utilize its social media channels, in addition to a newly launched campaign website, to disseminate this information for public use and dialogue.

BRC Board President, Julia Canfield, emphasized the need for this campaign: “Bisexual people have long been impacted by the negative effects of biphobia and bisexual erasure from both LGBTQ and straight communities. They have also been denied access to critical services and resources that can enhance their mental and emotional well-being. Therefore, Bisexual Health Awareness Month aims to increase awareness about these issues and feature ways we can effectively address them.”

Bisexual Health Awareness Month will have the following focus themes throughout the four weeks of March in order to emphasize the various issues regarding mental health in the bisexual community:
  • March 2-6: (Statistics) A focus on current statistics and research data concerning mental health disparities in the bisexual community.
  • March 9-13: (Intersectionality) An emphasis on how race, ethnicity, class, age, ability, etc., can further impact mental health disparities in the bisexual community, particularly in regards to experiences of oppression and discrimination.
  • March 16-20: (Resources) A spotlight on current resources and creation of new ones that can address mental health disparities in the bisexual community.
  • March 23-27: (Action) The promotion and development of interventions, policies, and other activities that work to prevent or decrease mental health disparities in the bisexual community.

Bisexual Health Awareness Month launches on Monday, March 2nd on the BRC’s Twitter (with hashtag #bihealthmonth), Facebook, and Tumblr pages. The BRC invites individuals and organizations both in the United States and from around the world to become involved with the campaign and to raise awareness about bisexual mental health disparities in their own communities.

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The Bisexual Resource Center (BRC) has been advocating for bisexual visibility and raising awareness about bisexuality throughout the LGBT and straight communities since 1985. The Bisexual Resource Center envisions a world where love is celebrated, regardless of sexual orientation or gender expression. Visit www.biresource.net.


Wednesday, February 25, 2015

BECAUSE 2015 PRESS RELEASE


BECAUSE 2015

Minneapolis, MN, USA

Bisexual Organizing Project Announces Conference Theme and Keynote Speakers

Bisexual Organizing Project (BOP) announces the BECAUSE Conference theme and keynote speakers for 2015. BECAUSE 2015 will be held April 17 – 19, 2015 at U of M Coffman Memorial Union. The conference will focus on leadership with the tag line “Developing Leaders to Empower Community” and the keynote speakers will be Andrea Jenkins and Eliel Cruz.

Andrea Jenkins is an award winning playwright, visual artist, poet, writer, spoken word artist, performer, and Bush Leadership Fellow. Andrea also works as a Senior Policy Aide to the 8th Ward Minneapolis City Council Member Elizabeth Glidden. She is a nationally known trans activist who has been a vital part of community organizing in the Twin Cities. In 2014 she created The City of Minneapolis Transgender Work Group, which looks at issues facing the trans community and makes policy recommendations to city government. Andrea has held directorships with numerous organizations including OutFront Minnesota, Forecast Public Art, District 202, PFund, The Minnesota HIV Services Planning Council, and National Writers Union.

Eliel Cruz has taken the online LGBT media world by storm as a writer and blogger providing insightful and timely coverage of important community issues. He is the bi editor of Advocate.com and contributes to Religion News Service, Huffington Post, Everyday Feminism and Mic writing on (bi)sexuality, gender, religion, and media. In addition to writing, Eliel also works to reconcile Seventh-day Adventist campuses through his 501(c)(3) organization Intercollegiate Adventist GSA Coalition.

BECAUSE stands for Bisexual Empowerment Conference, A Uniting Supportive Experience. The conference’s mission is to create a safe, supporting, and empowering community in which participants are encouraged to discover and celebrate their sexual identities. As the nation’s only major conference by, for, and about bisexual, pansexual, fluid, queer and unlabeled (bi+) people and their allies, BECAUSE serves as a national gathering for bi+ activists, community members, professionals, students, and researchers. Allies are enthusiastically invited to attend.

BECAUSE is welcoming and inclusive of all people, including but not limited to people of all genders, gender identities, sexual orientations, sexes, relationship orientations, races, ethnicities, national origins, abilities, religions, sizes, political affiliations, and others. BECAUSE and BOP embrace the many intersectionalities of the bi+ community and encourage people of all backgrounds and experiences to participate fully.

Preregistration for BECAUSE is available online through April 11th, 2015. Attendees are encouraged to preregister as the conference provides multiple meals to attendees. On-site registration is also available.

Nobody turned away due to inability to pay. Pay what you can and free registration options available.

Regular Registration: $60
Student Registration: $40
University of MN Students: Free

Tabling $50, Non-Profit $25

The BECAUSE Conference is the annual conference of Bisexual Organizing Project (BOP), a 501(c)(3) non-profit registered in Minnesota dedicated to building an empowered bisexual, pansexual, fluid, queer, and unlabeled (bi+) community. BOP provides in person community events throughout the year as well as outreach at regional Pride celebrations and community education through customized presentations. BOP also works in partnership with other groups and individuals in the Upper Midwest who are organizing events serving the bi+ community.


Camille Holthaus
Chair, Bisexual Organizing Project
www.bisexualorganizingproject.org

For press inquiries contact:

Monday, February 02, 2015

March With Us: Bisexual Community At #CC2015

Bisexual Community @ Creating Change Conference #CC2015
Denver, Colorado
  
The BOPP Suite
Thursday, Friday and Saturday, 8 AM – 10 PM
The BOPP (Bisexual/Omnisexual/Pansexual/Polysexual) hospitality suite warmly invites everyone of non-monosexual orientation to join us for nourishment of both mind and body. Our room will provide small meals, light entertainment, a safe place to catch your breath, an opportunity to connect with other attendees and share your stories. Check the Grid Schedule at #CC2015 for BOPP Suite location.

Bisexual Organizing Institute
Thursday, 9am – 6pm
In 1991 June Jordan, a black bisexual theorist and poet, called the bisexual movement a “mandate for revolutionary Americans planning to make it into the twenty-first century on the basis of the heart…consecrated to every struggle for justice, every struggle for equality, every struggle for freedom.” The bisexual community embraces intersectional dialogues and continues to work toward a world with safe spaces for every person. This year we’ll look back at recent successes in bisexual* parity and inclusion, while also looking forward to what’s next. Participants will interactively engage with organizers from BiNet USA, The Bisexual Resource Center, and The BiCast and will walk away with the tools and techniques that helped make campaigns like “Lifting the Google Block,” “#BiHealthMonth,” and “Bisexual Inclusion at NYC Pride” successful instances of bisexual, pansexual, fluid, and queer inclusion. For the first time ever, we’ll use a portion of the Institute to help create our signs, firm up messaging and plan our mini march!

Bisexual Visibility Action
Friday, 1:20pm (meet in BOPP Hospitality Suite at 1pm)
All bi* advocates who can will march into the 1:30pm plenary making sure the B in LGBT visible and HEARD. We'll then sit together and cheer any time we hear Task Force ED Rea Carey acknowledge the bisexual community during the State of the Movement address. We have the permission and encouragement of the Task Force staff for this action and Rea has told us the word bisexual will be mentioned! If the President can do it, everyone can! Stay tuned to @BiNetUSA on Twitter for the most up to date info on where to meet, make signs and flags.

 

Bi-specific Workshops @ #CC2015


FRIDAY, February 6

Building Community & Resisting Biphobia, 9-10:30
Bisexual Community & Issues • All Audiences
This workshop is: a way to affirm our biness; celebrate
the intersection of identities and acknowledge that we
have a range of experiences around our nonmonosexual
& other identities; dialogue among bi folks to develop a
vision of bi community!
Presenters: Laura Amalija Mitchell, Organizer, Feisty
Bis, Stanford, CA

Intersection Electric, 10:45-12:15
Bisexual Community & Issues • All Audiences
Attendees will become more familiar with and improve
their existing advocacy skills around bisexual* and black
community issues. Participants will learn to run interactive
games that utilize intersectionality as a tool to better
understand black and bisexual lives. Attendees will leave
with practical advice, social media tools developed with
intersectionality built in, and will grow their capacity to
support and ally with both black people and “The B in
LGBTQIA.” We welcome all to this session!
Presenter: Faith Cheltenham, President, BiNet USA,
Los Angeles, CA

Building Bisexual Health Awareness, 3-4:30
Bisexual Community & Issues • Fundamentals
The workshop will briefly describe the 2014 Bisexual
Health Awareness Month social media campaign piloted
by the Bisexual Resource Center. We will go over the
weekly topics and the images that were used to highlight
each theme. We will then go over the new topics for the
2015 campaign and discuss ways to highlight each of
them, plus we will strategize the outreach to LGBT organizations
and social media plan.
Presenters: Ellyn Ruthstrom, Executive Director,
SpeakOUT Boston, Boston, MA; Julia Canfield, Board
Member, Bisexual Resource Center, Boston, MA



Bisexually Healthy Faith Communities, 4:45-6:15
Move beyond the binaries! How can understanding and embracing those who identify as bisexual help us get in touch with the nature of the divine? Participants will assess their faith community’s bisexual health, explore current research about bisexuality, practice strategies for making faith communities more welcoming to bisexuals, challenge binary thinking by engaging in theological reflection, and develop an action plan to make their faith community or organization a more welcoming place for bisexual persons. Presenters: Marie Alford-Harkey, Deputy Director, Religious Institute, Westport, CT; Drew Konow, Scholar in Residence, Religious Institute, Westport, CT

Bisexual/Pansexual/Fluid Caucus, 6:30-7:30
Bisexual Community & Issues • Fundamentals
Wondering where the bi/pan/fluid/queer activists are at
the conference? Wondering how you can connect with
the national and regional bi organizations and movement?
We’ll swap information about what’s going on at
the conference for those from the middle sexualities and
offer opportunities for activists to network with others
from around the country. Organizational leaders will share
information about projects in which they can participate
such as the Bisexual Health Awareness Month and Bi
Awareness Week.
Presenters: Ellyn Ruthstrom, President, Bisexual Resource
Center, Boston, MA




SATURDAY, February 7

Beyond Binaries, 9-10:30

Bisexual Community & Issues • All Audiences
How sexually diverse are we, anyway? Let’s find out. In
this interactive workshop we will conduct an anonymous
survey of those present and we will look at the data:
Where do we fall on the sexuality continuum? How do we
label? How gender [non]conforming are we? How kinky?
How monogamous? And how can we use this information
to become more effective activists?
Presenters: Robyn Ochs, Editor, Bi Women Quarterly,
Educator & Activist, Boston, MA

Blessings Beyond Boundaries: Bisexual and Transgender Adventures in Judaism, 3-4:30
Faith/Practice Spirit, Do Justice • Participants will experience an immersion in chant, prayer, ritual, text study and discussion that lifts up queer sensibilities with a focus on celebrating the gifts of bisexual and transgender Jews. All can be replicated in home congregations, chavurot and ad hoc communities (queer or not) as well as in interfaith and political settings where spiritual experiences frame, support, inform and uplift. Attendees will leave refreshed, renewed, inspired and empowered. Hebrew used will be transliterated and translated.


SUNDAY, February 8

Bi the Agenda: Shaping Bi Inclusive Advocacy, 9:30-11
Bisexual Community & Issues • Intermediate
This workshop will gather bi- pan- fluid, queer-identified
folks and allies for a presentation that marks out the institutional
and structural basis of bi stigma using new data
specific to the bisexual community and then brainstorming
ideas for the next generation of bisexual-specific
advocacy. Bisexuals suffer unique disparities like higher
rates of cancer, addiction, and intimate-partner violence
and have correspondingly unique advocacy needs. Join
bi leaders and advocates to brainstorm advocacy priorities
for our community.
Presenters: Emily Dievendorf, Equality Michigan,
Detroit, MI; Heron Greenesmith, Movement Advancement
Project, Policy Researcher, Somerville,
MA; Paul Nocera, Bi Request, Brooklyn, NY; Denise
Penn, Mission Viejo, CA