In June, President Barack Obama issued a memo that called for a new level of equality for GLBT federal employees and their families. David Glasgow, a Nashville-based federal employee, was among those cheering this step toward legal equality.

Among the provisions included in the memo were steps to establish partners and children of federal agency employees as family members. This will allow for employees to take time off to tend to their children or their partner’s family in times of emergency.

“The trend is very encouraging,” Glasgow said. “There are a lot of federal employees I know whose lives will be immediately made better by the administrative changes now underway. The main thing is that now none of us have to worry as much about what will happen when a family crisis occurs.”

For Glasgow, this memo follows a budding trend among many employers in the private sector toward equality for GLBT employees and their families.

“Major corporations and institutions have been leading the way towards equality for a long time now and the federal government needs to race to catch up, or we'll all pay the price,” he said. “The changes underway will help government better compete for, and keep, the best employees. That's a good thing for every taxpayer.”

While Glasgow acknowledges the positive potential of the changes set forth by the Obama administration, he recognizes the legal limitations of an executive memo. Several substantive steps for equality cannot be taken unless they are made mandatory by legislative action. However, he remains optimistic that Obama’s sentiment will trickle through the rest of the federal government, emboldening lawmakers to bring more tangible rights to GLBT employees and their families.

“[Obama’s] action sets a good example for lawmakers at every level. Hopefully there will be even more substantive changes in the coming months as Congress moves forward on bills to bring equal treatment to key benefits like health insurance and retirement,” he said.

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Who would have thought that we would have to get through a pandemic in order to appreciate the small things we have, such as the ability to simply pack our bags and hit the road?

For two years, there’s been nothing left for us travel junkies to do but sit at home and try to find new destinations that we will conquer once we defeat what appears to be the biggest villain of the 21st century. But once that happens, hold your bags tight because we will be up for some of the most interesting travel experiences. Take a look at some ideas for your post-COVID traveling plans:

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