News Briefing

News Briefing

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Trans case to continue

The Philadelphia Commission on Human Relations heard testimony last week in the case of a transgender woman who contends she was unfairly discriminated against by a city agency.

Dawn Dalpe filed a complaint with the commission alleging that in 2005, the Department of Parks and Recreation unfairly terminated her employment as a seasonal lifeguard after she suffered both verbal and physical abuse from other employees because of her transgender status.

At a public commission hearing Aug. 20, Dalpe testified about her treatment, along with a former roommate and friend, who spoke in support of Dalpe. A former supervisor of Dalpe testified for the city.

The commission, Dalpe’s attorney Amara Chaudhry and city attorneys are in the process of scheduling a second day of testimony.

“This is an important case for my client because the Philadelphia Code specifically protects people from discrimination on the basis of gender identity, and this is not covered by state or federal law,” Chaudhry said. “The facts in this case are actually quite egregious and include physical assault of my client based on her transgender status. We hope the commission will issue a just ruling that recognizes the wrongful conduct by the City of Philadelphia and protects victims of transgender discrimination.”

Dalpe is seeking reinstatement with back pay and is also looking for enhanced sensitivity training for department employees.

Society Hill pet adoption

Citibank, at Second and South streets, will open its sidewalks to several area animal shelters for a pet-adoption event from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Aug. 27 and 28.

The Pennsylvania Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and the Philadelphia Animal Welfare Society will bring along animals seeking a loving home. Refreshments will be served.


The COLOURS Organization Inc. will host a free Community Appreciation Cook-Out for members of the LGBT community from noon-5 p.m. Sept. 18 at The Boathouse at FDR Park, South Broad Street and Pattison Avenue.

The event, co-sponsored by Philadelphia Black Gay Pride, will feature food, music and games, and guests are encouraged to bring chairs and blankets.

For more information, call (215) 496-0330.

Lobby for DADT repeal

Servicemembers United will sponsor a Lobby Day in Washington, D.C., Sept. 16 to press for the repeal of the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy.

Named “The Final Assault,” the event will take place shortly after the Senate reconvenes for the fall and will focus on pressing senators to take up the repeal bill.

The House of Representatives approved a defense-spending bill this spring that included an amendment to repeal the military’s ban on openly gay servicemembers, and the bill is now set to be heard by the Senate.

“This lobby day will be the last major opportunity for supporters of repeal to come to Washington, make the case for this amendment and hold their senators accountable,” said Alexander Nicholson, Servicemembers United executive director and a former U.S. Army interrogator who was discharged under “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”

To register, visit

— Jen Colletta

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