A great bill to be a part of

In a decisive victory for the Nashville LGBT community and its allies, the Metro Council on June 17 voted to extend benefits, including health insurance and pension, to domestic partners of government employees. Councilman Peter Westerholm, the bill’s original sponsor, cited Nashville’s “history of expanding freedoms, liberties, and civil rights” in his opening remarks, urging his fellow council members to follow Chattanooga, Knoxville, and Collegedale, a city of 8,000 on the Tennessee-Georgia line, in adopting legislation extending benefits.

“While the outcome of tonight’s proceedings may not be as monumental as those that have come before, nor will they be as far-reaching as those that are likely to come soon, nevertheless, we have before us the opportunity to lend our city's voice once again to the steadily expanding arc of justice,” said Westerholm in a prepared statement before the final vote.

The thirty-seven year old Texas native came to Nashville in 1995 to attend Lipscomb University. He returned after completing his master’s degree in Public Policy at Pepperdine University, and in 2011 was elected to represent District 6 in the city council. He currently chairs the Personnel/Public Information/Human Relations/Housing subcommittee.

Westerholm told O&AN via e-mail that the bill’s LGBT connotations affected its journey through city council from the beginning. “Some members of council openly stated that was their reason for opposition. Other members of council who supported the bill received some pushback from constituents. Thankfully, they had the courage to do the right thing.”

“As someone who has been involved with LGBT issues for a number of years now,” he added, “I knew there was growing support among the general population, as well as within the Metro Council. From when the idea (of introducing a bill) began, however, the landscape changed. We saw Windsor and Hollingsworth, and now 19 states plus DC have marriage equality. The national momentum was clear, even though Tennessee and much of the South has been lagging behind.”

“In the fall of 2013,” Westerholm said, “supporters of the legislation made a formal request of the Mayor to appoint a Study and Formulating committee for the purpose of studying Partner Benefits. This letter was signed by 26 members of the Metro Council. The Committee’s recommendations to move forward were made in the spring of 2014 and then legislation was drafted to track with the budget, which contained the necessary funding for the benefits.”

“This was a great bill to be a part of because there was a great team leading the charge. In addition to the primary sponsors, myself, Megan Barry, Lonnell Matthews, and Brady Banks, we had a number of other strong allies on council lending their support when necessary, such as Scott Davis and Fabian Bedne.”

“The Tennessee Equality Project was an invaluable ally in finding and sharing information, and most importantly, identifying those who could provide a personal testimonial. A personal story is the most powerful argument, and knowing the individuals and families whose lives you're impacting, it’s a compelling and moving perspective.”

WhistlePig + Alfa Romeo F1

SHOREHAM, VT (September 13, 2023) — WhistlePig Whiskey, the leaders in independent craft whiskey, and Alfa Romeo F1 Team Stake are waving the checkered flag on a legend-worthy release that’s taking whiskey to G-Force levels. The Limited Edition PiggyBack Legends Series: Alfa Romeo F1 Team Stake Barrel is a high Rye Whiskey selected by the Alfa Romeo F1 Team Stake drivers, with barrels trialed in their wind tunnel to ensure a thrilling taste in every sip.

The third iteration in WhistlePig’s Single Barrel PiggyBack Legends Series, the Alfa Romeo F1 Team Stake Barrel is bottled at 96.77 proof, a nod to Valtteri Bottas’ racing number, 77, and the precision of racing. Inspired by Zhou Guanyu, the first Chinese F1 driver, this Rye Whiskey is finished with lychee and oolong tea. Herbal and floral notes of the oolong tea complement the herbaceous notes of WhistlePig’s signature PiggyBack 100% Rye, rounded out with a juicy tropical fruit finish and a touch of spice.

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by Spectrum Medical Care Center

Nurse Practitioner Ari Kravitz

When I started medical transition at 20 years old, it was very difficult to get the care I needed for hormone replacement therapy because there are very few providers trained in starting hormones for trans people, even though it’s very similar to the hormones that we prescribe to women in menopause or cisgender men with low testosterone.

I hope more providers get trained in LGBTQ+ healthcare, so they can support patients along their individual gender journey, and provide the info needed to make informed decisions about their body. I’ve personally seen my trans patients find hope and experience a better quality of life through hormone replacement therapy.

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Descanso Resort swimming pool and lounge area

Descanso Resort, Palm Springs' premier destination for gay men, just received Tripadvisor's highest honor, a Travelers' Choice "Best of the Best" award for 2023. Based on guests' reviews and ratings, fewer than 1% of Tripadvisor's 8 million listings around the world receive the coveted "Best of the Best" designation. Descanso ranked 12th in the top 25 small inns and hotels category in the United States. Quite an accomplishment!

Open less than two years, Descanso Resort offers gay men a relaxing and luxurious boutique hotel experience just minutes away from Palm Springs' buzziest restaurants, nightclubs, and shopping. Descanso has quickly established itself as a top destination for sophisticated gay travelers, earning hundreds of 5-star guest reviews and consistently ranking in Trapadvisor's top positions alongside brother properties Santiago Resort and Twin Palms Resort.

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