At­lanta’s Prima Print­ing wins Na­tional Gay Me­dia As­so­ci­a­tion’s inau­gu­ral Ad POP award

GA Voice - - Newsbriefs -

LGBT le­gal or­ga­ni­za­tion Lambda Le­gal filed a brief Sept. 8 in the Georgia Court of Ap­peals on be­half of An­drew Baumert, a trans­gen­der man whose pe­ti­tion to le­gally change his name was de­nied by the same trial court that de­nied trans­gen­der man Rowan Feld­haus’s name change in June. Lambda Le­gal is han­dling both ap­peals.

“The court should not be al­lowed to dou­ble down on dis­crim­i­na­tion and deny an­other trans­gen­der per­son the right to change their name. When An­drew, Rowan and so many other trans­gen­der peo­ple go to the court to change their le­gal name, it is an im­por­tant step to­wards val­i­dat­ing who they are,” said Beth Lit­trell, se­nior at­tor­ney in Lambda Le­gal’s South­ern Re­gional Of­fice in At­lanta, in a press re­lease. “There are only a few ex­cep­tions that al­low a court to deny some­one the right to change their name. Be­ing trans­gen­der is not one of those ex­cep­tions. A name change is time-con­sum­ing and costly and should not be de­nied based on sex­ist no­tions or trans­gen­der bias.”

Baumert, 21, is an Au­gusta, Georgia na­tive who be­gan grad­u­ate school at Georgia State Univer­sity in At­lanta this year. Doc­tors as­signed his sex as fe­male at birth but his gen­der iden­tity is male, and in Jan­uary 2016 he filed a pe­ti­tion for a name change in the Su­pe­rior Court of Columbia County, Georgia.

The court de­nied Baumert’s re­quest at a June hear­ing, with Su­pe­rior Court Judge J. David Roper say­ing, “my pol­icy is to al­low some­one who claims to be trans­gen­der­ing [sic]—and I’ve had them in var­i­ous stages— my pol­icy is to per­mit some­one to change, in your case, from an ob­vi­ously—what ap­pears to me to be a fe­male name to some­thing that is gen­der–neu­tral.” Roper went on to sug­gest sev­eral names he “can live with,” in­clud­ing Mor­gan, Shannon, Shaun and Jaimie and stated that if Baumert were al­lowed to have a name that matches his gen­der iden­tity, it would “con­fuse or mis­lead the gen­eral pub­lic.”

This is the same pol­icy the court ap­plied to Feld­haus at a name change hear­ing in Fe­bru­ary of this year.

At­lanta’s own Prima Print­ing were among the win­ners of the Na­tional Gay Me­dia As­so­ci­a­tion’s (NGMA) inau­gu­ral Ad POP awards. The Ad POPs (Pride in On­line and Print) rec­og­nize the best rep­re­sen­ta­tions of LGBT in­di­vid­u­als in on­line and print ad­ver­tis­ing in re­gional LGBT me­dia.

Prima, a Mid­town At­lanta busi­ness owned by Chad Sims and his part­ner An­gel Marcelino, was the At­lanta re­gional win­ner. Win­ners were se­lected at the na­tional level as well, with Mercedes, Wells Fargo, the CDC, Loews Ho­tel and Al­ls­tate among the other win­ners.

The NGMA is a group of the na­tion’s lead­ing LGBT news­pa­per pub­lish­ers, lo­cated in New York (Gay City News), Wash­ing­ton, D.C. (Wash­ing­ton Blade), Bos­ton (Bay Win­dows), Philadel­phia (Philadel­phia Gay News), Detroit (Be­tween the Lines), Chicago (Windy City Times), Dal­las (Dal­las Voice), Los An­ge­les (The Pride), San Fran­cisco (Bay Area Re­porter), At­lanta (Georgia Voice), Ft. Laud­erdale (SFGN) and Or­lando (Wa­ter­mark).

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