The group uses the longer version of the acronym, in which the Q stands for “questioning” — as in still exploring one’s sexuality — or “queer.””The court has caught up to the majority of our country, which already knows that discriminating against LGBTQ people is both unfair and against the law,” he said in a statement. Joe Biden, the Democratic nominee for president, hailed the decision as “a momentous step forward for our country.” “Before today, in more than half of states, LGBTQ+ people could get married one day and be fired from their job the next day under state law, simply because of who they are or who they love,” said Biden, who was vice president when the court made its historic ruling in favor of same sex marriage in 2015.Rights activists had feared that Trump’s appointment of two new conservative judges to the top court could hinder further wins for their cause.Yet it was one of them, Neil Gorsuch, who wrote the majority decision, joining with the court’s four progressive-leaning judges and Chief Justice John Roberts.”An employer who fires an individual for being homosexual or transgender fires that person for traits or actions it would not have questioned in members of a different sex. Sex plays a necessary and undisguisable role in the decision, exactly what Title VII forbids,” Gorsuch wrote.”Those who adopted the Civil Rights Act might not have anticipated their work would lead to this particular result,” Gorsuch said. “But the limits of the drafters’ imagination supply no reason to ignore the law’s demands.” Trump’s administration had effectively thrown in its lot with employers, but the president later Monday called the ruling “very powerful”.”They ruled and we live with their decision,” he said.Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender rights activists, as well as Democratic politicians and several major businesses, had been demanding that the court spell out that the community was protected by the law. “This is a huge victory for LGBTQ equality,” said James Esseks, director of the American Civil Liberties Union’s LGBTQ & HIV Project. The US Supreme Court delivered a landmark victory for the gay and transgender communities Monday when it ruled that employers cannot discriminate against workers because of their sexual orientation.In a blow to the administration of President Donald Trump, the court ruled by six votes to three that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which outlaws discrimination against employees because of a person’s sex, also covers sexual orientation and transgender status.”Today we must decide whether someone can be fired simply for being homosexual or transgender,” the court said. “The answer is clear.” Topics : ‘Fired for coming out’ Solicitor General Noel Francisco, representing the government’s position before the court, argued that “sex refers to whether you were born woman or man, not your sexual orientation or gender identity.” He said it was the job of Congress to update the law, not the justice system.The Alliance Defending Freedom, a Christian religious freedom group, said the court’s decision was “truly troubling” and encroached on the religious beliefs of employers.Donna Stephens, the wife of transgender plaintiff Aimee Stephens who died last month, hailed her late partner’s struggle for justice after being sacked by a Detroit funeral parlor when she came out.”For the last seven years of Aimee’s life, she rose as a leader who fought against discrimination against transgender people,” Stephens said. “I am grateful for this victory to honor the legacy of Aimee, and to ensure people are treated fairly regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity,” she said in a statement.Among Democratic leaders hailing the ruling was Pete Buttigieg, the former Navy officer and mayor who became the first openly gay person to run for the Democratic presidential nomination. “It was only 11 years ago this summer that I took an oath and accepted a job that I would have lost, if my chain of command learned that I was gay. Firing us wasn’t just permitted — it was policy,” he said.Pop superstar Taylor Swift also lauded the decision, tweeting, “We still have a long way to go to reach equality, but this is a beautiful step forward.”
Budget News, Press Release Harrisburg, PA – Governor Tom Wolf today announced he will monetize a major state asset to manage the state budget and ensure that payments can be made to schools, health and human services providers, and other governmental entities. As specified in the governor’s February budget, the commonwealth will begin accepting proposals to execute a lease-leaseback arrangement for the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex & Expo Center. This arrangement would allow the commonwealth to retain control of the property, while also using its value to protect school districts and other entities that rely on funding from state government.“The failure to finalize and responsibly balance the budget means I must take action to make sure the Commonwealth can honor the commitments approved on June 30 by the General Assembly,” Governor Wolf said. “This further action will mean we can make our complete payments to local school districts and providers of human services, treatment programs, child care and other important services that Pennsylvanians rely on. Pennsylvanians, especially our kids and most vulnerable, should not bear the consequences of House Republicans’ inaction.“I continue to urge the House to pass a commonsense shale tax to address the structural deficit.”The commonwealth will retain ownership and control of the property. This plan will also continue the commonwealth’s commitment to the facility by dedicating additional funds to improve the property over the term of the agreement as the commonwealth continues to own and highlight the facility for Pennsylvanians and visitors from throughout the country.Under this arrangement, the commonwealth will lease the Farm Show to a private entity for 29 years for the fair market value of the property of approximately $200 million. At the same time, the private entity will lease back the facility to the commonwealth for the same term with annual rental payments based on a negotiated interest rate.The review process for proposals will involve multiple agencies, including the Department of Agriculture.This is the latest step by Governor Wolf to manage state finances and ensure the commonwealth can meet its commitments. This announcement follows his actions last Wednesday. SHARE Email Facebook Twitter October 09, 2017 Governor Wolf Announces More Action to Manage State Budget and Meet Commitments to Schools, Providers
Simon Zebo and Paul O’Connell crossed in the closing minutes to wrap up a runaway six-try, 47-23 victory as the Irish province advanced to their 11th semi-final in 15 years. The French giants were swept away by the relentless red tide early on, Keith Earls’ fifth-minute try helping Munster establish a 13-3 advantage. There were only four points between the sides at the break, though, after Luke McAlister kicked two more penalties. But CJ Stander, who stepped in for injured captain Peter O’Mahony, produced a dominant man-of-the-match display to power Munster through a sticky patch. Although second-half tries from Hosea Gear and Joe Tekori reduced the arrears to 27-16, Rob Penney’s men made certain of their progress as Zebo and O’Connell followed Dave Kilcoyne and Stander over the try-line. Former All Black McAlister received a late call-up to the Toulouse starting line-up after shaking off a back complaint. O’Mahony managed to steal an early line-out, setting the tone for a real fire and brimstone start. A barrage of phases – 20 in all – saw Munster tear into the Toulouse 22 and, armed with a penalty advantage, Zebo’s looping pass sent fellow winger Earls over in the right corner. Ian Keatley’s successful conversion was cancelled out by an immediate McAlister penalty, with the monster French pack managing to catch their breath. They were back behind their posts when Keatley made it 10-3 after a maul infringement. O’Mahony’s enforced withdrawal brought Stander into the fray and, from another muscular maul, Tekori denied the sniping Conor Murray. Press Association Munster won the battle of the Heineken Cup heavyweights as they floored four-time champions Toulouse at a raucous Thomond Park. But the resulting scrum saw Yohan Montes cough up Toulouse’s sixth penalty of the afternoon, allowing Keatley to widen the gap to 10 points. McAlister kicked a long-range penalty on the half-hour and, as Munster’s error count increased, he nailed his third successful kick. Defences were on top approaching half-time, with Felix Jones’ textbook tackle forcing a handling error from his opposite number Maxime Medard, while Toulouse thwarted a late Munster maul effort. The province’s mastery of the rolling maul paid off just 90 seconds into the second half, though, their forwards storming through and Murray’s snipe providing the platform for prop Kilcoyne to plunge over. They added a second close-range try soon after as Stander burrowed over for his first tournament score – a nice birthday present for the 24-year-old South African. Keatley converted both to open up a 27-9 lead and referee Nigel Owens lost patience with the scrummaging of the front rows, sin-binning both Kilcoyne and Montes. Keatley’s first missed penalty was followed by the best try of the afternoon, New Zealander Gear galloping away from Keatley and Laulala after a fantastic feed by replacement prop Cyril Baille. Lionel Beauxis, whose introduction sparked a breathless period of trademark French finesse, converted and suddenly Munster looked shaky. No French team has ever won at Munster’s Limerick citadel. Indeed, the province had only lost two of their previous 50 cup outings at the venue, and they reasserted themselves in the final quarter. Keatley took his tally to 15 points and Beauxis’ blunder from a quickly-taken restart allowed Munster to spin the ball wide for Laulala to score. Flanker Tekori bulldozed over for what was ultimately a consolation effort, before a superb Stander turnover led to Zebo touching down with five minutes left and O’Connell crashed over for his first Heineken Cup try since 2009.
Associated Press April 4, 2020 Share This StoryFacebookTwitteremailPrintLinkedinRedditThe Latest on the effects of the coronavirus outbreak on sports around the world:President Donald Trump is reassuring Little League baseball players that they should be playing the game again soon.“To all of our youth who are missing the start of their @LittleLeague seasons, hang in there! We will get you back out on the fields, and know that you will be playing baseball soon,” he tweeted Saturday. “We will get through this together, and bats will be swinging before you know it. In the meantime, take care of mom and dad, and know that this will not be forever!” The virus has decimated the sports world with the NBA and NHL suspending their seasons indefinitely and Major League Baseball postponing the start of its season.The NCAA basketball tournament was also canceled, as were college spring sports such as baseball and softball, lacrosse and track and field.The White House says the commissioners thanked Trump for his “national leadership and for his interest in the sports industry.” He called on them to continue efforts to support their fellow Americans during the current challenge.A wide range of sports league officials participated in the call, including NFL commissioner Roger Goodell and NBA commissioner Adam Silver.___ Little League president and CEO Stephen Keener reassured that the players would be back soon. Little League, like the major leagues, has suspended activities until mid-May, when the situation will be assessed, according to the Little League website.The Little League website said officials “will continue to consult with appropriate medical advisors, government health officials and our volunteer leaders around the world, and we are committed to doing the best we can for the safety and well-being of our players, families, volunteers, and fans.”___Houston Astros ace Justin Verlander says he will donate his weekly paycheck during the coronavirus shutdown to organizations that are helping with relief efforts.Verlander and wife Kate Upton made the announcement Saturday in an Instagram post. The couple said it would pick an organization each week and highlight its work. The Latest: Trump says Little Leaguers will be playing soon Stephen Kenny is the new Ireland soccer manager after replacing Mick McCarthy in a planned move brought forward by the coronavirus pandemic.“The Football Association of Ireland announces that Mick McCarthy is to be succeeded as national team manager by Stephen Kenny with immediate effect,” the FAI said in a statement. “The handover has been agreed with both men in light of the delay to the European Championship playoffs caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.”McCarthy had originally been due to stay in charge until July 31, after the Euro 2020 finals — now put back a year — were originally due to finish. Kenny had been set to take over on Aug. 1 after being in charge of the under-21 national side.Ireland faces Slovakia away in the Euro 2020 qualifying playoffs, with the winner to face either Northern Ireland or Bosnia and Herzegovina. However, the fixture has been postponed for a second time due to the pandemic.___ The real Grand National Steeplechase, one of the iconic sporting events in Britain, was canceled on March 16 following the stringent measures put in place during the coronavirus pandemic. The 18-1 Potters Corner, trained by Christian Williams with teenager Jack Tudor onboard, withstood the challenge of runner-up Walk In The Mill and third-place Any Second Now. Favorite Tiger Roll, who would have been chasing a third straight win in the real race, was fourth in the event broadcast on British television.___The White House says President Donald Trump spoke with commissioners of the country’s sports leagues on Saturday and told them he recognizes “the good work being done by many teams and players” to care for their communities and fans dealing with the new coronavirus. Tajikistan has started a new soccer season, joining a small group of countries around the world where play has continued despite the coronavirus pandemic.Istiklol Dushanbe retained the Central Asian nation’s season-opening Super Cup on Saturday with a come-from-behind 2-1 win over Khujand.The game was played without fans and a large banner reading “stop coronavirus” in Tajik and Russian covered part of the stands.Players and staff from both teams mingled freely after the final whistle before officials hung medals around their necks and shook their hands.Professional soccer is only continuing in a few countries around the world, with Belarus, Nicaragua and Burundi among the holdouts, attracting interest from foreign fans and international gambling markets. The AL Cy Young Award winner is among a group of major leaguers getting $4,775 a day for 60 days, a total of $286,500.Verlander’s salary this year is $33 million, which is $177,419 a day for the 186-day season.The payments were part of a recent agreement between Major League Baseball and the players’ union on how to proceed during the stoppage.___Potters Corner held on in a computer-simulated race to win the Virtual Grand National. Tajikistan has not reported any cases of the new coronavirus, according to a tally by Johns Hopkins University.___More AP sports: https://apnews.com/apf-sports and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports,Tampa Bay Lightning advance to face Dallas Stars in Stanley Cup finals, beating New York Islanders 2-1 in OT in Game 6