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LDS fathers of LGBT children offered support through Dragon Dads group

A Mormon father recently told Today.com that watching his son come out and feeling shunned by his religious community as he supported him became the motivation for Ahbau (the father) to create a private support group on Facebook, Dragon Dads. Currently, at least 110 dads — who come from conservative religious backgrounds and have LBGT children — share their experiences. The group is private to protect members from harassment, but most participants are open about their experiences with their children. The group also provides a safe place for them to talk about how their love for their children clashes with their religious backgrounds.

“You feel isolated because no one feels the same about us,” Ahbau said. “In my church and community, they love my kid, and they didn’t seem to love that (gay) part of him. As a father that kind of tears you apart.”

Local author releases new LGBT-themed children’s book

Author Sara Madden returns to the publishing scene with the release of Too, a children’s fiction celebrating love, families and the LGBTQ community. The book illustrates the acceptance of all cultures, the LGBTQ community and different sorts of families that come together to celebrate. Madden believes that Too will appeal to anyone who has a family, has a different kind of family or who has a loving community as their family.

Madden grew up in California. And she wrote her first story at age 6, titled “I Love My Family,” and she has been writing ever since. Growing up dyslexic, Madden always finds comfort in words, imagination and believing in the unbelievable. She currently lives in Utah with her family.

LGBTQ groups now welcomed in Provo’s Freedom Festival … well, sort of!

Provo’s Freedom Festival reversed its decision to block LGBTQ groups from its yearly parade following a compromise struck between opposing sides last week. Members of participating LGBTQ groups must only wear American flag pins/buttons, carry American flags, and must dress in red, white, and blue. OK!

“They are trying to hide their bigotry behind the American flag,” Troy Williams, Equality Utah executive director, told INTO in a phone conversation. “But there’s nothing that fuels the fires of patriotism more than people who fight for the rights and liberties that have been historically denied to them.”

Salt Lake City and County employees and volunteers to make a push to include everyone in 2020 census, volunteer training session tomorrow

The U.S. Constitution requires that every 10 years, the census includes “all people”. The population total is the basis for, among other things, the future distribution of federally-funded programs to states, counties, and cities. It will not include individual census-takers but rather through phone calls and online surveys.

So, over the coming 18 months, community outreach groups will be available to answer questions and to inform households on completing the census survey. Despite a number of questions included in the survey, only two answers are required for completion: 1) what is the location of your household?, and 2) how many people live at this location?

On Saturday, June 23, a training session for canvassing volunteers will be held at the Sorenson Multi-Cultural Center, 1383 S. 900 West, starting at 9 a.m., or volunteers may sign up online at https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1f3w2DHwqFQV29XBDSRC0GzXwmIpHON1rnHZ67tEEKsM/viewform?ts=5b05b20b&edit_requested=true.

Utah received $3.253 billion based on the last census count.

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