Why we can't have equality, according to lawmakers.

A change at the legislature is needed, both parties say.

Why we can't have equality, according to lawmakers.
In this week's newsletter: How come we can't get a nondiscrimination bill passed?; Intimidating reporters from doing their jobs; VOTE FOR LOOKOUT!; And a brand new Out of the Closet to win free swag!


Every week, we highlight the lives of our readers by showing off what queer joy looks like to them. Show off your life by replying back to this email with a photo, or tagging us on Instagram @lookoutphx.

A photo taken at the Zoni Skate Girls night at Walter Warehouse in Phoenix.

YOUTH DAY: For the past 20 years, Democrats (and some Republicans) have tried to pass a statewide nondiscrimination bill that would protect LGBTQ+ people from being denied housing, employment, or access to private businesses.

That has changed recently, though, as some Republican support has turned to no Republican support.

So what's it going to take? Lawmakers in both parties agree that the only way queer people will have equal protection under the law is if Democrats have full control of the House and Senate. Read our full story here.

WHAT WE’RE KEEPING AN EYE ON: Earlier this year, we highlighted legislation introduced by Democrats in the House and Senate that aimed to pass a statewide nondiscrimination bill.

One of those bills, sponsored by the LGBTQ+ Legislative Caucus, was created in partnership with the ACLU of Arizona, HRC of Arizona, and had the support of other LGBTQ+ groups locally such as GLSEN Arizona and AZTYPO.

The other bill, introduced by Rep. Amish Shah (D.-Phoenix), had far less support from the community, but was seen as a moderate approach to the more popular bill because it allowed for religious exemptions.

In an interview with LOOKOUT this past Feb., Michael Soto, the executive director of Equality Arizona and chief advocacy officer with One Community—the organization that helped draft the bill—said that he didn't believe there was such a thing as "perfect" legislation, and that the goal of advocacy was to make meaningful steps forward, even if they were small.

But there hasn't been progress, and some criticize Democratic lawmakers as being hypocritical for even pushing legislation—they note that progressives criticize Republicans for introducing bills they know will end up in a veto, but at the same time push legislation they know Republicans won't pass.

At the end of the day, this is how politics is played in a state with slim majorities and where bills are used to push discussions among the public.

But we're curious how these kinds of battles affect you: do you care that these bills are introduced but not passed? Do you agree that the only way things will change would be through a party shift in the legislature? Or what do you think needs to happen for members of both parties to come to an agreement on LGBTQ+ rights? Reply back to this email and let us know!

LOOKOUT is a finalist in the NEXT Media Challenge by the Glen Nelson Center at American Public Media. We are one of 10 other news organizations nationwide chosen as the "future of local journalism." And we could win up to $90,000! But we need your vote! Click here to vote for LOOKOUT! (Note: You have three votes, and can only vote once in each category.)

  • PHOENIX PRIDE AWARDS: LOOKOUT is a nominee for the Phoenix Pride Awards! We learned this past weekend that we are up for the BJ Bud Spirit Award, but we need your vote! Phoenix Pride
  • SILENCING REPORTERS: Family Strategies Counseling Center sent a cease and desist letter to our reporter Josephine Jaye McAuliffe after contacting them about our story on conversion therapy. McAuliffe has been able to tie the center's staff to promoting the practice under different medical regimens. LOOKOUT
  • GOES AROUND COMES AROUND: After pushing House Speaker Ben Toma to ban Democrats from reserving rooms in the House because they invited a drag queen to the Capitol, Sen. Anthony Kern (R.-Glendale) was banned from using Senate materials after he went on a homophobic tirade with a known anti-semitic talk show host. AZ Mirror
  • LET'S TALK ABOUT SEX: LOOKOUT reporter Shelby Rae Wills is seeking feedback from our students and parents on sex education. Their series is looking into what’s being taught, and if it’s enough. If you’re a student or parent in Arizona, please take our survey.
    Student survey here.
    Parent survey here.

  • CORPORATE PRIDE: Conservatives are pushing companies they hold stock in to stop LGBTQ+ marketing, such as during Pride month. They argue that it's a risky way to lose money in the stock market. Wall Street Journal
  • DOXYPEP: The treatment regimen to prevent some STI's is now being prescribed over telemedicine by the provider, Mistr. The group made its name through online prescriptions of PrEP, an HIV-prevention medication regimen. The Washington Blade
  • TRANS ATHLETES A new study conducted by the British Journal of Sports Medicine counteracts the narrative that trans women, specifically, have a physical advantage when competing in sports. “Trans women are not biological men,” said Yannis Pitsiladis, one of the authors, in relation to athletic abilities. The New York Times


Have a community event coming up you want LOOKOUT to highlight? Email us.

  • Thurs. May 9 - Border butterflies Project, hosted by Queer AF and the Transgender Law Clinic, is being hosted at The Downtown Clifton in Tucson. Info
  • Fri. May 10 - Dry in the Desert is throwing a "Soft and Sweet" sober dance party at The Giving Tree in Phoenix. Info
  • Sat. May 11 - Palabras Bookstore in Phoenix is putting on a BIPOC open mic night. Info
  • Sat. May 11 - Skoden Coffee is hosting their "Queer Market" event. Funds will go to moving their current facility. Info
  • Wed. May 15 - Thems is hosting a writing workshop. Info
  • Thurs. May 16 - The Greater Phoenix Equality Chamber of Commerce is hosting their central mixer. Info
  • Sat. May 18 - Get all dressed up for the Sparkle Glitter GLSEN prom. Info
  • Sat. May 18 - Join Trans Spectrum AZ in their virtual support group. Info
  • Tues. June 4- Chandler Pride is hosting the Queer Human Library, a storytelling event for the queer community. Info
  • Sat. June 8 - The Tucson Interfaith HIV/AIDS Network fundraiser is being held at the Desert Diamond Hotel and Casino. Info


Without the LGBTQ+ community, there’s less meaning. Guess the word below with only the support of the letters L, G, B, T, Q, I, A and submit your answer to be entered into our monthly drawing for exclusive LOOKOUT swag. The more times you play, the more chances you get to win! The next drawing will be April 30.

T_A_ _ _
_ _ _ _A_

Hint: The first transgender model to be on the box of Clairol's "Born Beautiful" hair dye No. 512 in the 1970s. She was later outed and fired.

Last Week's Answer: CASA NUESTRA

Sheila K. (Phoenix); Lauren C. (Tempe); Clark O. (Phoenix); Christina P. (Phoenix); Bruce A.

Great! You’ve successfully signed up.

Welcome back! You've successfully signed in.

You've successfully subscribed to LOOKOUT .

Success! Check your email for magic link to sign-in.

Success! Your billing info has been updated.

Your billing was not updated.

LOOKOUT Publications is a federally recognized nonprofit news outlet. EIN Number:92-3129757