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Williamson and Rutherford See Huge Growth, Memphis Lags in Census

New census numbers underscore a more diverse Tennessee, a struggling Memphis, and booming Williamson and Rutherford counties.

Both counties’ growth exceeded 44 percent compared with the last decennial count; Williamson’s population at the 2010 census topped 183,000; Rutherford’s, 262,000, according to census data compiled by USA Today. Rutherford County Mayor Ernest Burgess attributed the surge in his county to a high quality of life and economic opportunity.

The figures also show a growing Hispanic population in Tennessee — 1 in 10 Davidson County residents is Hispanic, the Tennessean noted — and integration gains throughout the South, according to a measure that tracks whether blacks and whites reside in the same neighborhoods.

The Associated Press explains:

Thirty-two of the (South’s) 38 largest metro areas made such gains since 2000, according to a commonly used demographic index. The measure, known as the segregation index, tracks the degree to which racial groups are evenly spread between neighborhoods. Topping the list were rapidly diversifying metros in central Florida, as well in Georgia, Texas and Tennessee.

Missing out on the overall 11.5 percent boom in the Volunteer State was Memphis, whose population experienced only the second decline since the yellow fever outbreak of the 1870s, according to the Commercial Appeal. Memphis’ population shrank by 0.5 percent to just under 647,000 residents, even though its suburbs and the county as a whole saw population growth.

Davidson County grew 10 percent to almost 627,000 residents, Knox County grew 13 percent to a population topping 432,000, and Madison County grew 7 percent to more than 98,000 residents.

Transgender Political Coalition Rallies Behind Marrero, Richardson Bills

Release from the Tennessee Transgender Political Coalition; Feb. 3, 2011:

Hate Crimes and Birth Certificate Bills Filed

The Tennessee Transgender Political Coalition (TTPC) is pleased to announce that both of our bills have been reintroduced in the 107th Tennessee General Assembly.

This week, SB 0313 by *Marrero (*HB 0187 by *Richardson) was filed, which would provide for amendment of birth certificate to reflect a change in gender. Currently, Tennessee is the only state in the nation with a law that totally bans such changes.

Also filed was SB 0314 by *Marrero (*HB 0188 by *Richardson), which adds as an advisory enhancement factor to sentencing that defendant intentionally chose victim of crime based on gender identity or expression. Passage of this bill will make it easier for state and local authorities to track and prosecute hate crimes against Transgender Tennesseans.

We would like to thank our chief sponsors on both bills, Senator Beverly Marrero, (D-Memphis) and Representative Jeanne Richardson (D-Memphis), for their continued support.

We urge Tennessee lawmakers to pass both of these vital pieces of legislation.

TTPC Targets Anti-LGBT Bills in State Legislature

Unfortunately, there are also several bills on file this year that can do a lot of harm to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) Tennesseans:

*SB 0049 by *Campfield/HB 0229 by *Dunn is one such bill. Senator Campfield has been introducing this bill, which would ban the teaching of sexual diversity, for many years. It is anti education and a threat to intellectual freedom. TTPC has consistently opposed this bill in the past and will continue to do so in 2011.

SB0016 by Bill Ketron (R-Murfreesboro)/HB0007 by Debra Maggart (R-Hendersonville) & Cameron Sexton (R-Pikeville), would create a new Photo ID to vote, which could effectively disfranchise transgender voters. TTPC, along with several civil liberties and voting rights groups, have fought similar legislation in the past.

SB0113 by Jack Johnson (R-Franklin) and others/HB0130 by Debra Maggart & Glen Casada (R-College Grove) would abolishes teachers’ unions ability to negotiate terms and conditions of professional service with local boards of education. In 2008, the Metropolitan Nashville Education Association pushed to have sexual orientation and gender identity added to the non discrimination policy for Metro Nashville Public Schools. To date, Metro Nashville remains the only public school system in Tennessee which bans discrimination against LGBT students, staff, and faculty. We recognize the work of Nashville’s Teachers Union in working for non discrimination language and do not want to have others prevented from doing the same.

TTPC will remain vigilant in identifying any bills we consider harmful towards LGBT people and will fight against any and all of them.

If you do not know the name of your State Senator or Representative, you can Find Your Legislator by clicking here.

7th Annual Advancing Equality Day on the Hill

As part of this effort, we strongly urge everyone to join TTPC as we support the Tennessee Equality Project’s 7th Annual Advancing Equality Day on the Hill, on Tuesday, March 1. Join LGBT people and supporters from across the state in Nashville as we meet with state legislators and discuss issues of importance to the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community. More details about the event are below.

Wednesday, February 9, 7 pm EST

Lobbying 101

The Church of the Savior

934 N. Weisgarber Rd.

Knoxville, TN

TEP Knox County Committee

Thursday, February 10, 7 pm CST

Lobbying 101

Club Drink

23 Heritage Square

Jackson

TEP Madison County Committee

Saturday, February 12, 4 pm EST

Lobbying 101

University of Tennessee Chattanooga Student Center, Lookout Mountain Room

Chattanooga

TEP Hamilton/Bradley County Committee

Tennessee Equality Project has planned a number of events to enhance your lobbying day experience.

Monday, February 28

GLBT Candidate Training by Shawn Werner of the Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund

For everyone considering a run for elected office in their future.

TEP will offer a reception after the candidate training to welcome all AED participants. Exact times and locations shall be announced.

Tuesday, March 1, 8 to 9 am CST

Coffee and a light breakfast courtesy of the Vanderbilt Lambda Association.

The Rymer Gallery

233 Fifth Avenue North

Tuesday, March 1

7th Annual Advancing Equality Day on the Hill

Legislative Plaza and War Memorial Building

Nashville

organized by Tennessee Equality Project

Metro Nashville Contract Accountability Non Discrimination Ordinance Deferred

As expected, BILL NO. BL2011-838, which would ban discrimination against all lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender employees of contractors in Metro Nashville and Davidson County, was deferred on Second Reading until Tuesday, February 15 by voice vote.

The Tennessee Transgender Political Coalition (TTPC) wishes to thank the 22 members of the Metro Nashville Council who voted on January 18 to support the bill on First Reading.

Opponents of equality and fairness are working hard to defeat this latest effort to end discrimination. Those who believe in equality and fairness are also working hard to demonstrate support.

Every resident of Davidson County is represented by the five At-Large Members, who all voted Yes on Tuesday: Tim Garrett, Megan Barry, Charlie Tygard, Ronnie Steine, and Jerry Maynard, II. Please contact them and thank them for standing against discrimination, and ask them to continue supporting this important piece of legislation through the remaining votes.

If your District Councilmember voted Yes on January 18, please contact them and thank them as well for standing against discrimination, and ask them to continue supporting this important piece of legislation through the remaining votes. If you are not certain of the name of your District Councilmember, click on http://findwhereivote.nashville.gov/ to find your district number.

Even if your Councilmember did not vote Yes, we still need you to contact them and express your support for ending discrimination in Metro Nashville contract work.

Then, please join us at the next Metro Council meeting on Tuesday, February 15, at 6:30 pm, for the Second Reading of the Ordinance. The Metro Council chamber is in the Metro Courthouse on the 2nd Floor.

Marisa Richmond

President

And Please Save These Other Dates!

March 13 to 15 (new dates!)

Congressional Lobby Days

Washington, DC

organized by the National Center for Transgender Equality

Saturday, July 23, 6:00 pm CDT

TTPC Summer Meeting

Nashville

Contact TTPC for information.

The Tennessee Transgender Political Coalition (TTPC) is an organization designed to educate and advocate on behalf of transgender related legislation at the Federal, State and local levels. TTPC is dedicated to raising public awareness and building alliances with other organizations concerned with equal rights legislation.