News Briefing: Dec. 7-13, 2018


Newtown Township approves antidiscrimination measure

Newtown Township’s board of supervisors unanimously approved an ordinance to protect LGBTQ individuals on issues of housing, employment public and accommodations.

The ordinance was approved with a 4-0 vote, with one supervisor not in attendance. The measure was modeled on the anti-discrimination ordinance enacted in Doylestown last year, and is part of a trend of Pennsylvania municipalities enacting LGBTQ antibias policies in the absence of a statewide law. A Human Relations Commission will be set up in Newtown Township to settle issues on a municipal level without having to go to the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission.

Mazzoni Center’s inaugural Trans Awareness Ball

OUR Way, Mazzoni Center’s transgender health and wellness program, will host the inaugural Trans Awareness Ball Dec. 15 as a continued celebration of the “remembrance, resistance and resilience” of trans people.

The “Mobwives”-themed ball — presented by legendary ballroom housemothers Erica Kane Lanvin, Sexy Lexy Balenciaga and east coast mother Tatyana Escada — welcomes community members to walk, or compete, in more than 10 runway categories. Some of the categories include: “Performance: La Bella Mafia,” a performance inspired by rapper Lil Kim’s album “La Bella Mafia;” “Best Dressed: The Cotton Club,” in which participants dress in 1920s-inspired attire and “Realness: The Hit Women,” a competition that includes participants wearing all black and a fedora hat while incorporating the transgender flag into their performance. Participants can win a cash prize for each category, ranging from $100 to $800.

“Trans Awareness Ball: Mobwives” will be held 7 p.m.-1 a.m. Dec. 15 at 1336 Spring Garden St. For more information on the categories, visit

Qunify’s discussion on queer activism

Qunifiy, an LGBTQ social community, will host the latest installment of its “Our Stories” discussion series Dec. 15 focusing on stories of local queer activism.

The event, which will take place 2-4 p.m. at the Lutheran Settlement House at 1340 Frankford Ave., will feature local LGBTQ activists and the stories of how they became involved in their work. Speakers will also address the challenges of activism within the LGBTQ community. Guests are encouraged to participate in a group discussion on the different aspects of social-justice activism and how to join activist movements.

“Our Stories” is an all-ages, alcohol-free event. Admission is free.

Handel’s Messiah at Rittenhouse

Voices of Pride will perform Handel’s Messiah 8-10 p.m. Dec. 15 at the Church of the Holy Trinity in Rittenhouse Square. Artistic director Daniel Schwartz will conduct the seasonal celebration, featuring Prometheus Orchestra. Selections include “And He Shall Purify,” “He Trusted” and the beloved “Hallelujah Chorus.”

The Messiah was first performed in 1742 in the United Kingdom, the adopted home of German-born Georg Friedrich Handel. The premiere in Dublin drew such a large crowd that ladies were advised to leave the hoops in their skirts at home.

While tickets will be available for purchase at the door, attendees can avoid the long line by purchasing in advance through Brown Paper Tickets. General-admission tickets cost $25, with student tickets available at $10 with a valid student ID.

The Attic’s winter-supply drive

The Attic Youth Center is hosting its annual winter-clothing drive for the center’s members who are in need of warm clothing.

The center is looking for donations of new coats, scarves, hats, socks and gloves for ages 14-23. All items should be adult sizes. Donations can be dropped off at The Attic, 255 S. 16 St., by Dec. 21.

For more information on the clothing drive, contact Alyssa Mutryn at [email protected]

— Compiled by Adriana Fraser and Miranda Lankas