HOUSTON VOICE www.houstonvoice.com
MAY 27 2005 3
local news briefs
Magazine co-chairs Rebecca Mahaffey and Yvonne Feece showed off their work at the Pride Magazine unveiling recently at Meteor. (Photo by Dalton DeHart)
The Pride Magazine is available at 200 locations in Houston
Houston Pride officially unveiled the 2005 Pride Magazine last Saturday during an event
at Meteor. The Magazine, which contains features on people and Pride events, also
details the parade route and a map to gay clubs in Houston. Magazine co-chair Yvonne
Feece said the 146-page magazine is available at 200 locations in Houston, most of them
relationships and mental health." The
counseling center's executive director,
Ann J. Robison, said she urges the
American Psychiatric Association to formally adopt the statement when it meets in
July. "Montrose Counseling Center's therapists help clients on a daily basis deal
with the mental health impact of being
continually marginalized, and all of the
political attention focused on banning so-
called 'gay marriages' creates an atmosphere where sexual minorities get the message that they are 'less-than' and undeserving of equal rights," she said.
Countown to Pride begins
with a slate of events
As June rolls around, events leading up to
Pride Houston begin to take place, starting
with Girlz Pride 2005 and the Return of
Atwood & Comeaux on June 3. Girlz Price
2005 is a party for women who love women
sponsored by Groove Girlz from 9p.m. to 2 a.m.
at 1415 California. Cost is $10, and proceeds
benefit Pride Houston. More information is
available at www.groovegirlz.com. A concert
by Jerry Attwood and Ricky Comeaux at 9
p.m. June 3 at Ovations, 2536 Times Blvd. benefits Bering Omega Community Services.
Cost is $50, and more information is available
at www.beringomega.org. On June 4 from 8:15
a.m. to 3 p.m., the Lesbian Health Initiative
Rainbow Health Faiir offers free mammograms, blood screening tests and osteoporosis
screening. Through collaboration with the
Montrose Clinic, pelvic exams, pap smears
and screenings for HIV and sexually transmitted diseases are also offered. The fair takes
place at the clinic, 215 Westheimer. More information is available at www.lhihouston.org.
The Houston Pride Parade 2005 gets underway at 8:45 p.m. June 25 on Westheimer
between Woodhead and Whitney More information on all Pride events can be found at
Lambda Legal representative Sheba Gipson will
speak at a meeting of the Houston GLBT Political
Caucus. (Photo by Dalton DeHart)
Lambda Legal representative
addresses GLBT Political Caucus
Sheba Gipson, outreach associate for
Lambda Legal, will speak at 7 p.m.
Wednesday during a meeting of the
Houston GLBT Political Caucus (PAC) at
the Houston GLBT Community Center,
3400 Montrose Blvd., Suite 207. Gipson's
talk will center on the areas of youth and
schools, workplace equality, family protections and a new Lambda Legal initiative
for Latinos. The caucus meets the first
Wednesday of every month at 7 p.m. and
conducts a Community Work Day on the
second Saturday of each month.
Montrose Counseling Center
urges passage of psychiatric
The Montrose Counseling Center is urging
the American Psychiatric Association's
board of trustees to adopt a statement
drafted by the organization's advisory
group on the subject of recognizing marriage equality for same-sex couples. The
statement reads: "Heterosexual relationships have a legal framework for their
existence through civil marriage. Samesex couples therefore experience several
kinds of sanctioned discrimination that
can adversely affect the stability of their
Unauthorized press release
causes concern for agencies
From staff and wire reports
Officials of two AIDS
service agencies fear an
release could cause confusion among donors
By BINNIE FISHER
A press release dated May 20,2005, and
widely circulated among Houston gay
media and AIDS funding sources
announced the 2006 merger of the
Montrose Clinic and the Assistance jFund.
There's just one little problem, there
is no merger between the two agencies.
"That press release was unauthorized,
and we don't know where it came from."
said Katy Caldwell, executive director of
the Montrose Clinic. "This didn't come
from either of our agencies."
As soon as officials at the clinic and the
Assistance Fund learned about the press
release, a release with the logos of both
agencies was issued dispelling the claims.
"This type of false information is
damaging because it creates confusion
with donors and clients," the official
While the two entities have signed no
formal merger agreements, Caldwell
Katy Caldwell, executive director of the Montrose
Clinic, said a merger like the one detailed in the
unauthorized release is not out of the question in a
day when all agencies are seeking better ways to
serve their clients. (Photo by Dalton DeHart)
said, the idea is not out of the question.
"We look at all kinds of ways to better
serve our clients," she said. "It's not
something we've ruled out, but it's not
something we can formally discuss."
As the official release points out. a
recently signed agreement between the
Montrose Clinic and Walgreen's is an
example of a new innovation that will
benefit not only Montrose Clinic
patients, but also clients of the
Ken Malone, executive director of the Assistance
Fund, said he wonders about the motivation of
whoever sent out an erroneous press release
about a merger between his agency and the
Montrose Clinic. (Photo by Dalton DeHart)
With a Walgreen's Pharmacy onsite
at the clinic, clients will experience the
convenience of being able to purchase
medications at the time of their clinic
appointments, rather than having to
make a stop on the way home.
The phantom release - on plain paper
with no logos and no contact information
- contains a number of inaccuracies.
Malone pointed out that the release
indicated the two agencies have "signed
a memorandum of merger under which
the two AIDS service organizations will
merge into one agency in 2006."
Malone, who has headed the
Assistance Fund for a number of years,
said the term "memorandum of merger" is foreign to him. In addition to
grammatical errors, he said, the release
also contains other false information.
The release indicates that while
under the merger agreement, Caldwell
would remain as executive director.
Malone would leave the agency to
become a lobbyist for AIDS causes.
"Ken is not leaving." Caldwell said.
"He is not moving to Washington, D.C."
Malone said the origin of the news
release is a mystery, but the boards of
both agencies will be attempting to
determine who may have written it. He
said whoever wrote the release was
somewhat knowledgeable about both the
clinic and the Assistance Fund.
The release was sent out not only to
the media but also to funding sources for
the clinic and the Assistance Fund, leaving Malone to wonder about motivation.
Both agencies derive their funding
from public and private sources, including those provided under the Ryan
White Title I Care Act.
The clinic offers HIV testing and
healthcare services for people with
The Assistance Fund helps people
with AIDS keep their health insurance
by helping to pay premiums and assists
with medication purchases.