Qmmunity: Between a Rock and a Homophobic Place

Plus, Joterias’ and Poo Poo Platter’s spooky digital drag to chill you and thrill you

Vote for the progress you want to see (Photo by Jana Birchum)

Last Friday LGBTQIA and disability rights advocates and lawmakers spoke out against the Texas State Board of Social Work Examiners' recent move to slash nondiscrimination protections from its code of conduct. At a virtual press conference organized by the National Association of Social Workers Texas chapter, members of the Texas House LGBTQ Caucus, Coalition of Texans with Disabilities, and Equality Texas called on the board to repeal the revision – put forth by Governor Greg Abbott's office – that would allow social workers to discriminate against clients on the basis of a client's sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, or disability. As Friday's speakers pointed out many times, the move is an intentional effort to roll back existing statewide protections.

Abbott's office gestured at the revision aligning with statutory law (blah blah blah), but hostility toward queer and trans rights in the Lone Star State isn't new. The push for 2017's discriminatory "bathroom bill" was largely hard-right GOPers at the Capitol reacting to an Obama-era directive for public schools to allow trans students to use bathrooms aligning with their gender identity, and indeed much of Tr*mp administration's unrelenting fight to degrade protections for LGBTQIA people, especially for trans folks, has worked to undo Obama-era policies (again, existing protections). It is, in the most literal sense, the undoing of progress. On Tuesday the Texas Behavioral Health Executive Council, which oversees the board, reversed the rule change. Still, one council member and actual social worker, Tim Brown, insisted the change wasn't meant to be discriminatory, but rather a result of being "stuck in the proverbial rock and a hard place." (What?) The group's seeking a legal opinion from the Texas A.G., and we all know how Daddy Paxton feels about us queers, so yeah, the battle isn't over yet. But as I've said before, we're here, we're queer, let's vote the bigots out (tho Paxton won't be up until next year.) And remember the Pride at the Polls I told y'all about? They tell me that if you tag your voting selfie with #prideatthepolls on IG they'll share it on the 'Gram.

2 To Do

Joterias Tatiana Cholula gets spooky with Latinx QPOC performers from near and far. Performances by Papi Churro, Ruby Knight, and Banshee Rose, plus special guests. Thu., Oct. 29, 8-11pm. Online. $10 suggested cover. twitch.tv/papijinxy.

Drag Supreme of Halloween Our Ladies of the OutHaus are on the prowl for this year's drag supreme. Lucy Fur, Bunni Rabid, Urethra Burns, Rosalind Hussell, Luna Knight, and Nova Darkstar compete for the crown. Fri., Oct. 30, 9-11pm. Online. $10 suggested donation. twitch.tv/poopooatx.

Q'd Up

Rain on 4th Reopening Ages 21 & up; no cover. Payment by card only. Wednesdays-Saturdays, 5pm; Sundays, 3pm. Rain on 4th, 217 W. Fourth. www.fb.com/rainon4th.

Empowering Trans Voters in Texas ACLU of Texas' panel with Black Trans Women Inc., Lambda Legal, TENT leadership. Thu., Oct. 29, 5pm. Online. Registration required. www.aclutx.org/txtransvote.

Crave Maeve Haven gets her host on. Fridays, 11pm. Oilcan's, 211 W. Fourth. www.fb.com/oilcanharrys.

Monster Mash Calling Austin's LGBTQIA fams, this virtual Halloween celebration is for you Sat., Oct. 31, 1-2:30pm. Online. Free (RSVP). www.austintexas.gov/dac.

BearBack Bingo Lady Grackle Birdbreath and CupCake play host. Tuesdays, 8-10pm. The Iron Bear, 301 W. Sixth. Free. www.fb.com/rheironbearatx.

Reading the Rainbow APL's virtual queer book club reads Dreadnought by April Daniels. Wed., Nov. 4, 7-8pm. Free. library.austintexas.gov.

Queer History Series Hear Austin's queer elders share their stories and experiences in this new project from Queerbomb. Thu., Nov. 5, 6:30-8pm. Online. www.fb.com/queerbomb.

Want more queer? Visit austinchronicle.com/qmmunity

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Austin LGBTQ, Austin LGBTQ, nondiscrimination protections, Greg Abbott, Coalition of Texans with Disabilities, Texas House LGBTQ Caucus, LGBTQIA rights, disability rights, Equality Texas, Texas State Board of Social Work Examiners, Equality Texas, Texas Behavioral Health Executive Council, Poo Poo Platter, Drag Supreme of Halloween, Joterias, Tatiana Cholula

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