Council candidates come out to support LGBTQ community

A City Council candidate forum called into question how progressive Asheville really is when it comes to rights and protections for those in the LGBTQ community. All six candidates said they are in favor of the city of Asheville implementing a nondiscrimination ordinance, which is specifically disallowed under House Bill 142.

Asheville LGBTQ community to celebrate progress, call for change at Blue Ridge Pride Festival on Oct. 1

Author, transgender activist and newcomer to Asheville Tina Madison White reflects on the state of the Pride movement in 2016. White is the director of operations for Blue Ridge Pride Center, which will host its eighth annual Pride Festival Saturday, Oct. 1 in Pack Square Park in Asheville.

Solidarity in grief and love: Ashevillea­ns stand in vigil for the victims of mass shooting at Pulse Bar in Orlando

To honor the victims of the deadliest mass shooting carried out by an individual in our nation’s history, Asheville people gathered for words of encouragement, an urging toward actions of love, a friendly embrace and a moment of silence. On Monday evening, streams of people filed in on foot, on bikes, and in cars to […]

INTERVIEW: Gov. McCrory offers his views, amid protests at the Western Residence

Spring is a beautiful time to visit the Governor’s Western Residence on Town Mountain. Governors and their spouses have traditionally opened the residence to the public twice a year — once in the spring when the rhododendrons are in full bloom, and once during the winter holidays. Last December’s gathering saw record attendance, according to a tour guide […]

In photos: A rally in support of HB 2 and protesters against it share Pack Square

On Saturday, April 2, supporters and opponents of the recently-passed North Carolina legislation House Bill 2 demonstrated in Asheville’s Pack Square. The new law overturns a Charlotte ordinance that would have allowed people to use the bathroom that corresponds to their gender identity rather than the sex that matches their birth certificate. It also prevents other municipalities from passing similar ordinances to Charlotte’s, and it limits legal recourse for those who believe they have experienced discrimination based on race, religion, color, national origin, age, sex or disability.

Asheville’s a welcoming place for LGBTQ youth, but homeless quandary persists

The scarcity of jobs in Asheville, an already difficult job horizon for LGBTQ people, as well as difficult, intolerant home situations often mean unstable housing for these WNC youths. As Asheville becomes more and more an attractive and welcoming place for LGBTQ teens and young adults in the area as well as the country, the influx compounds the homeless situation.

Activists say transgende­r people still face uphill battle in Asheville

Activists who gathered Thursday night, Nov. 20, during the Transgender Day of Remembrance (TdoR) say there is ongoing danger toward transgender people living in Asheville, and it may not be an issue that is on people’s radar. “There is danger for transgender people living in Asheville. I know of transgender women who have faced danger […]

Blue Ridge Pride Festival focuses on marriage, family and fun

Blue Ridge Pride’s Yvonne Cook-Riley estimates that 35-40 percent of attendees at Pack Square Park for the organization’s festival on Saturday, Oct. 4, will be straight allies. That is, people who identify as heterosexual but back their lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer or questioning friends and family. What accounts for such strong support of […]

Claim your rights

The DOMA decision creates opportunities for LGBTQ individuals. Pictured: Participants in the Campaign for Southern Equality’s “We Do” action, in which LGBTQ couples request marriage licenses from registry offices throughout the the South. Photo by Max Cooper