Tag Archives: Cincinnati

Gay History Month – October 5: Truman Capote, Miss Peggy Lee, and Robert Mapplethorpe Banned In Cincinnati

Gay/LGBT History Month - October 5th: Truman Capote, Peggy Lee and Robert Mapplethorpe Banned In Cincinnati

The Moment by Robert Mapplethorpe

On October 5th…..

1726 – Diplomat, spy and solider Chevalier d’Eon who lived his first 49 years as, and her last 33 years as a women is born in born in Tonnerre Brugandy, France.   From 1777, d’Éon claimed to be anatomically a woman, and dressed as such.  It was not until doctors examined the body after d’Éon’s death discovered that he was anatomically male.

1840 – John Addington Symonds, one of the earliest scholars of gay and lesbian issues is born. Symonds assisted Havelock Ellis in the writing of “Sexual Inversion”.  Although he married and had a family, Symonds was an early advocate of “male love”and referred to it as l’amour de l’impossible (love of the impossible).

1961 – The movie Breakfast at Tiffany’s written by Truman Capote and adapted for the screen by George Axelrod opens in theaters.

Capote’s unorthodox views on sex and gender, modern critics have excavated the original novella and movies subtle references to the alternative sexual identities and practices of the text’s male characters, suggesting that Capote intended Breakfast at Tiffany’s as an exploration of the powerful and loving relationships that often exist between straight women and gay men.

1967 – Ethel Merman makes a guest appearance as “Lola Lasagne” on Batman. One of the worst villains ever to appear in the  television series.

1969 – Peggy Lee’s camp classic Is That All There Is? enters the top-40 on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart and gay men have been singing it ever since.

1969 The Washington Blade publishes its first issue. At that time it was called The Gay Blade and actually wrote articles that contained hard hitting journalism and gay activism unlike today.

1987 – The city commission of Traverse City, Michigan voted unanimously to repeal a law banning the sale of condoms in city limits.

1990 – Dennis Barrie, director of the Cincinnati Contemporary Arts Center, was acquitted of obscenity charges after displaying a Robert Mapplethorpe exhibit.

 This was the first criminal trial of an art museum arising from the contents of an exhibition.  The group Citizens for Community Values an affiliate of the anti-gay hate group the American Family Associated who also has ties to the Family Research Council organized the protest against Mapplethorpe’s exhibit. The CCV is still active in the Cincinnati area today and boasts itself as being a proud affiliate of the the Family Research Council and the American Family Association. 

Hamilton County Sheriff Simon Leis who arrested Barrie declared the photos to be “smut.” “This was beyond pornography,” Leis told the Enquirer in March 2015. “When you put a fist up a person’s rectum, what do you call that? That is not art.

Oh yes. Yes it is.

1998 – The US Congress killed an amendment by Rep Frank Riggs (R-CA) which would have barred San Francisco from spending federal housing money to implement its domestic partner ordinance.

 

Gay History - June 30: Cincinnati Police Ignore Anti-Gay Public Pool Riot, Bowers v. Hardwick, Jacob de Haan Assassinated, and MORE!

Gay History – June 30: Cincinnati Police Ignore Anti-Gay Public Pool Riot, Bowers v. Hardwick, Jacob de Haan Assassinated, and MORE!

Rainbow spin

 

June 30th…….

1924:  Jacob Israel de Haan, Dutch writer and journalist, is assassinated at age 42 for his contacts with Arab leaders. His killer claims never to have known about Haan’s homosexuality, and said further, “I neither heard nor knew about this,” adding “why is it someone’s business what he does at his home?” According to Gert Hekma, Zionists spread a rumor he had been killed by Arabs because of his sexual relations with Arab boys

1973:  The first lesbian conference in Canada is held at Toronto’s YWCA.

1974:  43,000 attended the 5th Annual Christopher Street Liberation Day Parade, more than double the number from the previous year.  The years parade included floats and themes for the first time./

1975:  Canada’s National Gay Rights Conference sees formation of National Gay Rights Coalition which is renamed the Canadian Lesbian and Gay Rights Coalition / Coalition Canadienne pour les droits des lesbiennes et des gais (CLGRC / CCDLG) in 1978. It folds two years later.

1979:  In London, England, 8,000 join the Gay Pride march from the Embankment to Hyde Park to hear Tom Robinson sing.

1979:  A group of 40 people in Cincinnati Ohio who had reserved a city park pool in the division of Clifton for a Gay Pride party are attacked by local residents who throw rocks and bottles at them. Police arrived, watched for a while and then drove away doing nothing. One man had to be rescued by a television news crew. Police refused to return, even after several calls reporting a riot.

1981:  Moncton, New Brunswick, city council passes a last-minute law to prevent a gay picnic from taking place in Centennial Park to celebrate Canada Day. Groups of gay people hold picnic anyway.

1981:  Governor Bob Graham of Florida signed the Trask Amendment into law which denied state funding to any university or college which allowed gay/lesbian/bisexual student organizations. It would later be struck down by the Florida Supreme Court as unconstitutional.

1984:  The Unitarian Church in the U.S. voted to approve ceremonies uniting same-sex couples.

1986:  The U.S. Supreme Court announced its decision in the case of Bowers v. Hardwick, a case challenging the constitutionality of the Georgia sodomy law.

Michael Hardwick was 29 and tending bar at a gay pub in Atlanta, Georgia, he threw a beer bottle into an outdoor trash can and got cited by the police for public drinking. The cop wrote down the wrong day on his summons. When Hardwick didn’t show up in court as a result, an arrest warrant was issued. An officer later showed up at his apartment to serve the warrant, and a guest who’d been sleeping on the living room couch said he wasn’t sure if Hardwick was home. The cop decided to take a look and found Hardwick in his bedroom, having oral sex with a man and they were both arrested for sodomy.

Hardwick’s case was dismissed without a trial by the district court, and then he actually won on appeal before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit, where a panel of judges found that his fundamental right to privacy had been violated. . But when Hardwick’s case came to the Supreme Court, Justice Byron White didn’t frame it in terms of privacy or any other civil right. “The issue presented,” he wrote, “is whether the Federal Constitution confers a fundamental right upon homosexuals to engage in sodomy.” The answer was no. White got there by saying that proscriptions against homosexual conduct had “ancient roots,” stressing that at the time 24 states and the District of Columbia continued to outlaw sodomy

The court voted 5-4 to uphold the sodomy law.

White famously got the fifth vote that made his opinion speak for the majority from Justice Lewis Powell, a moderate, who said at the time that he didn’t know any gay people. (He meant openly gay people, since it turned out he had a gay clerk.).  Four years later, Powell famously told a group of law students that he regretted his decision. “I think I probably made a mistake in that one,” he said.

1986:  Dr. William Haseltine responds to a U.S. justice department memo which claimed that he said that HIV could be casually transmitted. He said his statements had been distorted and that casual contact posed no significant threat. Assistant Attorney General Charles Cooper later apologized to him.

1987:  After spending three years in jail for treason, South African AIDS activist Simon Nkoli was released on bail.

Nikoli founded the Gay and Lesbian Organization of the Witwatersrand in 1988. He traveled widely and was given several human rights awards in Europe and North America. He was a member of International Lesbian and Gay Association board, representing the African region. After becoming one of the first publicly HIV-positive African gay men, he initiated the Positive African Men group based in central Johannesburg.

Nikoli died of AIDS in 1998 in Johannesburg

1989:  Activists protest outside the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington DC because of the cancellation of an exhibit of photographs by Robert Mapplethorpe.

1990:  Gays in London, England, lay a wreath at the Cenotaph in memory of gays killed in Germany during the Holocaust.

1995:  British publication Capital Gay puts out its last issue.

1998:  Lawmakers in Catalonia Spain passed a bill which gives same sex couples the same inheritance and alimony rights as married couples, but stopped short of allowing the adoption of children. Catholic groups condemned the bill, saying it institutionalized immoral behavior.

2000:  David Copeland, 24, is convicted murder for planting a bomb in a London gay bar a year earlier.  Copeland a  Neo-Nazi militant  became known as the “London Nail Bomber” after a 13-day bombing campaign in April 1999 aimed at London’s black, Bangladeshi and gay communities.

2001:  Dozens are injured in Belgrade as roving bands of young thugs attack participants the first gay-rights march in Yugoslavia’s capital.

2005:  Spain becomes the fourth country in the world (after Belgium, the Netherlands and Canada) to legalize gay marriage as the Spanish parliament gives final approval to a bill authorizing same-sex weddings. To no one’s surprise the Catholic Church howled in protest, but the law passed anyway.

2009:  After a strenuous court battle, the Minnesota Supreme Court race was finally decided by a state Supreme Court ruling in favor of Al Franken. Franken is considered a great ally to have in the Senate, as he has spoken numerous times on his intent to vote in favor of expanding rights for gays, and because his vote makes a “filibuster proof” majority.

82-02-05  Bush-Trask amendment unconstitutional -
Cincinnati ER Nurse Resigns After Posting Abusive Anti-LGBT Rant On Facebook

Cincinnati ER Nurse Resigns After Posting Abusive Anti-LGBT Rant On Facebook

A Cincinatti, Ohio emergency room nurse has “resigned” after having a transphobic, homophobic meltdown on Facebook over Procter & Gamble removing the female “Venus” symbol from its packaging on its ‘Always’ menstrual products last week

Cindy Carter, who worked for Tri-Health posted the following on Facebook:

Fuck ‘Always.’ This country has gone to complete shit,”

Why do certain applications ask for LEGAL SEX … you’re either male or female. There’s no fucking in between. Jesus people – get your heads on straight. Grab a mirror – it’s easy. You either have a dick or you don’t.

I swear, these fucking cock sucking homos think that they deserve everything. And the confused woman are just as bad. Men need to be men. Women need to be women. Stop the stupid ass ‘man buns’ and man you buns up to do some hard labor.”

Tri-Health a major Cincinnati health provider, opened an investigation on the allegations after openly gay Cincinnati City Councilman Chris Seelbach shared a screenshot of the post on his Twitter account.

“Cindy Carter is a nurse at @TriHealth. As an LGBTQ+ person, I don’t feel comfortable using their services until I know Mrs. Carter would never treat me,” he wrote. “Until TriHealth terminates the employment of Carter, I will not be using their services,” he concluded adding the hashtag #BoycottTriHealth.

On Thursday, TriHealth CEO Mark Clement released a statement saying that the investigation was over, “because the individual involved in this matter “voluntarily” resigned her position.” and went on to say that the company, which employs roughly 11,500 individuals, does not “condone these derogatory comments made about LGBTQ community members.”

Cincinnati Enquirer Asks Trump Supporters Not To Be Raging Racist Assholes At Rally Tomorrow

Cincinnati Enquirer Begs Trump Supporters Not To Be Raging Racist Assholes At Rally Tomorrow

Via the editorial board of the Cincinnati Enquirer:

On Thursday, the eyes of the nation will be on Cincinnati when President Donald Trump takes the stage at U.S. Bank Arena for his seventh visit to the region since announcing his presidential candidacy in 2015. Pundits will be watching and waiting for chants of “send them/her back” or some other trope that can be deemed offensive to prove a point and paint our city, state and the Midwest in a negative light.

Don’t take the bait. We’re asking you, Mr. President, your supporters and your detractors to set a new example for presidential visits. Setting an example not only includes people at the rally or protesting it, but those commenting about it on social media. Let’s do our part to dignify the debate about how best to improve our nation and the lives of all Americans. Perhaps if we can show the way, the rest of the country might follow suit.

The Cincinnati Enquirer is a morning daily newspaper published by Gannett Company 

Ohio Set to Execute Killer in Brutal Cincinnati Gay Murder Case

Ohio Set to Execute Killer in Brutal Cincinnati Gay Murder Case

The state of Ohio is preparing for its first execution in many years of convicted murderer Robert Van Hook on Wednesday more than 30 years after he viciously stabbed a gay man to death and mutilated his body in his Hyde Park apartment.

David Self was 25, when he was found stabbed to death and disemboweled by his neighbor in Feb. 1985.

Authorities say Van Hook met Self at the Subway Bar in downtown Cincinnati on Feb. 18, 1985. After a couple of hours, they went to Self’s apartment where Van Hook strangled the 25-year-old Self to unconsciousness, stabbed him multiple times in the neck and then cut his abdomen open and stabbed his internal organs, according to court records. Van Hook stole a leather jacket and necklaces before fleeing, and smeared his own bloody fingerprints to hide his identity from police,

 Previous attorneys representing Van Hook attempted a “homosexual panic” claim in his defense, or the idea that self-revulsion over sexual identity confusion contributed to a violent outburst. Van Hook’s current lawyers say that was misguided, and overlooked his diagnoses of borderline personality disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder from his childhood..

Prosecutors dismissed the idea as nonsense, saying Van Hook made a practice of luring gay men to apartments to rob them and made note to mention that Van Hook has an extensive history of violence while incarcerated, including stabbing a fellow death row inmate in November.

Self’s family support the execution, telling the parole board last month that their slain loved one is missed every day. Self’s sister, Janet Self, said her brother had been reduced over the years to “a gay man in a bar,” when he in fact he was so much more.

While separate federal courts have ruled in favor of a retrial for Van Hook, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld his conviction and death sentence in 2009.

In May, the Ohio Parole Board voted against clemency for Van Hook, now 58.

Ohio Gov. John Kasich also rejected his request for clemency without comment.

Cincinnati, Ohio Becomes A Sanctuary City While Republican Bigots Scream “Traitors!”

 

The City Council of Cincinnati officially voted to make Cincinnati a sanctuary city, a decision that means city police won’t enforce federal immigration laws against people here illegally..

More than 150 people — on both sides of the issue — packed into council chambers to speak their mind and watch the vote.

The designation is symbolic, with Mayor John Cranley vowing the city would not violate federal law but will stand with immigrants. It came after almost two hours of public comment on both sides of the issue

Opponents cheered when President Trump’s name was mentioned. One shouted, “Follow the law.” Another speaker called council supporters “traitors.”

Anderson Township Trustee Andrew Pappas, a Republican, urged the city not to jeopardize federal funding, which Trump has threatened to pull from communities designated as sanctuary cities.

Cranley said this action doesn’t do that.

Passions ran high, prompting Cranley to ask a police officer to stay. Other officers arrived a short time later. Ultimately, they weren’t needed.

The Council voted 6-2 for the resolution, which calls for Cincinnati to be “welcoming and inclusive city for all immigrants to live, work or visit.”

Council Republicans Charlie Winburn and Amy Murray were against the idea. Winburn suggested taking the words “sanctuary city” out of the resolution, an idea that was rejected. Christopher Smitherman, an independent, was excused from the meeting. He told The Enquirer Tuesday he had planned to abstain.

Winburn who is considering a run for city Mayor in the next election cycle denounced City Council’s 1992 expansion of the city’s anti-discrimination ordinance to include sexual orientation: “This is anti-family, anti-church, anti-God, anti-business,” Winburn staunchly opposed any and all legal protections from discrimination for gay citizens and joined and worked for Cincinnati’s own hate group the Citizens for Community Values a Southern Law Poverty Center recognized hate group to which he still has ties today.

“What we are doing is standing with immigrants,” said Cranley, who made the announcement Monday. “We have a very good vetting system in this country.”

 

Southern Law Poverty Center Adds 7 New Anti LGBT Hate Groups Including Cincinnati’s Citizens for Community Values.

CCV Cicinnati listed hate group

A new study shows hate groups are a growing concern in the United States

The spring 2016 edition of Southern Poverty Law Center’s investigative journal says there are 892 active hate groups in the United States.

The Montgomery, Alabama civil rights group listed 48 organizations as anti-LGBT hate groups in 2015, up from 44 in 2014, as a few from previous years became inactive. The number of anti-LGBT hate groups has nearly doubled since 2011, when there were only 27.

The journal says there was a 14 percent national increase in hate groups between 2014 and 2015. There are 9 active hate groups in Iowa and 36 in Illinois.

Among the organizations the were added to the Southern Poverty Law Center’s list of active anti-LGBT hate groups this year includes Cincinnati’s own  Citizens for Community Values who claim to be “officially” affiliated with the most notorious national anti-gay hate groups the Family Research Council and the American Family Association and have been active in the anti-LGBT civil rights movement in Cincinnati since its founding in 1983.

Recently when the city of Cincinnati banned the dangerous practice of “gay conversion therapy” within its city limits.

The CCV sent out the following press release:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

December 10, 2015

Contact: Phil Burress – 513-733-5775
or
Garry Ingram – 607-341-1289

ABSOLUTE SHAME!
CINCINNATI BANS LICENSED COUNSELORS FROM SPEAKING TO STRUGGLING FAMILIES
 
The City of Cincinnati will be Sued

CINCINNATI – Cincinnati City Council has once again overstepped its role as a City.  Licensing of counselors is the authority of the state, as are the instructions and limits on those counselors.  To date NOT ONE bit of evidence has been brought forward of forced counseling or counselor misbehavior.  City Council has over-reacted to urban myths, banning a recognized therapy and inappropriately intervened between families and doctors. The reality is that doctors and licensed counselors do not “convert” homosexuals to heterosexuality, instead they work with heterosexuals who are struggling with various feelings, including UNWANTED same-sex attraction.  Therapy against someone’s will does not work, and is not ethical.

Any statements made about electroshock or waterboarding therapy is absurd.

What the City has created is an environment that forces licensed counselors to promote homosexuality while banning heterosexuality.  This is especially dangerous when 70-80% of children struggling through this process as adolescents have grown out of the mixed feelings into heterosexuality as adults (Vanderbilt University and Portman Clinic studies).  Additionally, this effort was undertaken with the guise of lowering suicide rates, yet studies at the Karolinska University have shown a 20-fold increase in suicides for those with mixed-body feelings moving forward with gender re-assignment.

Finally, there are an estimated 10,000+ who have entered and LEFT a LGBT identity, exposing the nihilistic myths surrounding those with unwanted same-sex attraction.

There is no better example of two people that left homosexuality than Garry & Melissa Ingraham. Both were deeply engaged in homosexuality, but with the freedom to seek support and counsel to resolve and reduce their unwanted same-sex attraction, they have been happily married for 8 years and parents of two delightful boys

Incidentally one of the only two votes against the banning od reparative therapy on the Cincinnati City Council belonged to that of Charles Winburn, an ex-employee of the CCV who still has close ties to the organization.

Below are the seven new anti-LGBT hate groups that have been added to the SLPC listings:

The Campus Ministry USA of Terre Haute, Indiana

Citizens for Community Values in Cincinnati, Ohio

Conservative Republicans of Texas in Houston, Texas

D. James Kennedy Ministries in Fort Lauderdale, Florida

• Faith Baptist Church in Greenville, Georgia (formerly Sons of Thundr)

Faith2Action in North Royalton, Ohio

The Friendship Assembly of God in Colorado Springs, Colorado

 

Cincinnati, OH Closes Landmark Gay Bookstore Over “Nail Polish Remover”

Cincinnati Closes The Pink Pyramid

The Pink Pyramid, a gay bookstore that has operated in downtown Cincinnati for over 21 years has been closed.

“The City of Cincinnati closed us down!” sign now appears in its empty storefront  window.

“They pushed us out because we are a gay business,” said George Vanover, who owned the business for nearly 25 years with his partner, Gary Allgeier. “Some people have told us they think it’s because of the streetcar and because of development. But I don’t think that. I think they just wanted us gone.”

“This was a concerted effort to get rid of us,” he continues. “And they won. They got rid of us.”

It all began in 2013 when cops made a few undercover visits to the store and they were sold “nail polish remover.”

Problem was the crime lab called what he was selling isobutyl nitrite.

“Poppers” or “rush,” an inhalant used to get a short burst of euphoria and to increase sexual pleasure. The state of Ohio calls it illegal when the chemical is packaged and sold as an inhalant, says Allgeier’s lawyer, Bill Gallagher. But it can be used as a nail polish remover.

Undercover cops busted The Pink Pyramid again in 2014, selling its special brand of “nail polish remover.”. This time, they also got a search warrant and found 634 bottles of the inhalant at the store. They found others, mostly used, during a separate search at Allgeier’s home. The cops said he knew exactly what he was selling.

There were more criminal charges. But this time, the Cincinnati Police department asked the city’s law department to begin additional court proceedings to declare the bookstore a nuisance and to shut it down.

And the cities lawyers did just that.

Cincinnati’s only gay city council member Chris Seelbach weighed:

“They’ve been a fixture in the gay community. A lot of people are upset to see it go,” he said. “But you have to follow the law and not disobey it. That is the number one issue here. They’d still be open today if they had stopped selling illegal products.”

Vanover scoffs, calling the city not nearly as progressive as it likes to make believe it is.

 

BREAKING: City of Cincinnati Passes Ban On LGBT Reparative Therapy – 7 to 2 Vote

Cincinnati Passes Reparative Therapy Ban

 

Not content with waiting for the Ohio legislature to pass a statewide ban on LGBT “Reparative Therapy”. Today the city of Cincinnati, OH in a 7-2 vote, banned the dangerous practice that many experts have called  torture to be performed within its city limits.

Openly gay City Counselor Chris Seelbach posted on his Facebook page.

Almost a year ago, Leelah Alcorn asked us to make her death mean something. I think she might think we helped do just that today.

Cincinnati City Council, in a 7-2 vote, just BANNED LGBT “Conversion Therapy” in the City of Cincinnati.

No longer will LGBT people, under 18, have to suffer the incredible damage that comes with medical professionals trying to change their sexual orientation, gender identity or expression.

The conversation before the vote was perhaps the most meaningful and touching I’ve ever been apart of during my time on Council.

Support and comments from Vice-Mayor David Mann, Council members Kevin Flynn, Christopher Smitherman, Wendell Young, Yvette Simpson & PG Sittenfeld were incredibly moving.

The votes against the ban, by Councilmembers Amy Murray & Charlie Winburn, were votes against keeping LGBT young people safe. And (to) feel shameful.

But, lets celebrate our victory and the victory for so many young people in Cincinnati.

‪#‎LeelahAlcorn‬ ‪#‎FixSociety

The passage makes Cincinnati the first major U.S. city to ban reparative or conversion therapy. The Movement Advancement Project, an LGBT organization in Denver that tracks legislation nationwide on reparative therapy, has no record of a city passing an ordinance that would ban the practice.

City Councilor Charles Winburn who voted against the ban is the former employee and current member of the anti-gay, anti-woman’s choice, “religious” group the Citizens for Community Values which is officially affiliated with the Family Research Council and the American Family Association both nationally recognized hate groups.

H/T Chuck Beatty – Unite Cincinnati

Cincinnati, Ohio To Offer Transgender Surgery Benefits

gay history

Yes you read that right.  Cincinnati, Ohio.

Medically necessary “transgender” procedures will be covered under the City of Cincinnati’s health insurance starting next year.

The reason: To help Cincinnati lure businesses and citizens.

“Since I’ve been here I’ve worked to make this city as competitive and inclusive as possible,” said Cincinnati City Councilman Chris Seelbach, the city’s first openly gay councilman. “This is a another step in that direction.”

Seelbach led a council majority in signing a letter urging the change.

Cincinnati would be the first city in Ohio to offer transgender procedures in its health benefits, according to a statewide advocacy group.

Shane Morgan, founder and chair of TransOhio, which provides education and advocacy, praised city officials.

“For Cincinnati to cover their trans employees – because there are trans employees who work there – is great,” Morgan said. “Hopefully cities elsewhere in Ohio will follow that.”

In recent years city officials have worked to include and embrace the LGBT community – a transformation recently noted on National Public Radio’s website. In June, the city began offering a domestic partner registry, paving the way for more companies to offer benefits to gay couples.

And in recent years the city started offering same-sex benefits to all city employees; the police department, fire department and mayor’s office all have liaison officers to the LGBT community.

Council last year passed regulations requiring anyone who contracts with the city to agree in writing to an inclusive nondiscrimination policy. And, the city’s hate crimes law that included race and gender was expanded to include sexual orientation and gender identity.

Including transgender procedures should give Cincinnati a score of 100 on the Human Rights Campaign Municipal Equality Index, making Cincinnati one of the most lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender-friendly cities in the country.

Interim Cincinnati City Manager Scott Stiles initiated the transgender insurance change, but was encouraged to act by a majority of City Council; In addition to Seelbach: PG Sittenfeld, Yvette Simpson, David Mann and Wendell Young signed the letter. Of course anti-gay city counselor Charles Winburn did not.

“It is important that we provide necessary medical benefits to all of our employees,” Stiles said. “This positions us well for progress and keeps the City competitive as an employer.”

As interim city manager, Stile made the decision, alerting Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield of the change Aug. 22.

In May, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services lifted its ban on funding medically necessary procedures for people who don’t identify with their biological sex.

Cincinnati joins cities such as San Francisco, Seattle, Berkeley and Portland in offering transgender procedures. For the surgery to be “medically necessary” a professional mental health counselor would have to sign off on it.

Several Fortune 500 companies – including Procter & Gamble and US Bank currently offer transgender inclusive benefits.