NEW YORK – This month, the award-winning LGBT newsmagazine, “In The Life,” travels to the Midwest for a look at the critical alliance between labor unions and the LGBT movement, followed by an exposé of reparative therapists who say LGBT people can “pray the gay away.”
Wisconsin is a state with deep labor roots, and it was the unions in Wisconsin – not legislators - that first extended domestic partner benefits to LGBT workers. Last year, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker sparked a political uproar and national media debate with his controversial plan to strip collective bargaining rights from teachers and many state employees.
“In The Life” speaks with LGBT union workers in the state to discover how their rights and benefits are affected.
“With the new changes that are coming out because of Act 10 next year, I'm expecting to pay another 400 dollars a month in pension and health care benefits, and I'm terrified,” said Tina Owen, a public employee and lesbian mother of two.
Then, John Becker is an activist who investigates anti-gay religious extremists. “In The Life” follows Becker to a Minnesota clinic owned by U.S. Rep. Michelle Bachman and her husband, Marcus Bachman, where he discovers the ongoing practice of debunked reparative therapies.
“A clinic that believes that homosexuality is a sin and can be changed is engaging in culture war practices, they're not really doing therapy. They're just living according to a philosophy that ignores science, that ignores the reality of homosexuality,” said Jack Dreschner, MD, president of the Group for the Advancement of Psychiatry.
“The Truth Comes Out” is now airing on public television stations across the country and available for free video streaming from the In The Life Media website or below.
"In The Life" series ending in December, changing direction
(Editor's note: The following is a statement issued by In The Life Media.)
In The Life Media was founded in 1992 on the belief that real stories about lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people are our greatest asset in the fight for equality. By bringing those stories into living rooms across the country for the past 20 years, ITLM has shattered stereotypes and helped pave the way for today’s LGBT movement. In the process, we have evolved into the most honored and respected producer of LGBT journalism on television and online.
Much has changed since our programming first premiered. LGBT people now figure prominently in television news and media. Lesbian and gay soldiers serve openly and proudly in the military. A majority of Americans, including our President, support marriage equality. Studies show that visibility is the driving force behind this rapid shift in cultural attitudes toward the LGBT community. As the media organization that pioneered LGBT visibility on television, we believe ITLM played a significant role in this historic progress. Today, we pause to celebrate ITLM’s remarkable legacy and announce a conclusion and a new direction.
In December, we will broadcast the final episode of our Emmy Award-nominated, signature television series, "In The Life."
Creating high quality, in-depth journalism is expensive. However, we are committed to using our available resources to reach the broadest possible audience. New digital technologies provide the way forward for ITLM’s work to live on. ITLM has entered into conversations with other organizations to create a web-based, open-source repository of our video archive documenting the LGBT movement. We plan to make available thousands of hours of incomparable and never-before seen footage chronicling the evolution of LGBT rights in America. Our aim is to provide access to this material so that it will continue to be used to advance equality.
This media and its powerful impact would not have been possible without the unyielding support we’ve received from thousands of friends, donors and colleagues over the years. Your generosity has had a daily impact on thousands of LGBT individuals. Our programs have helped change lives and, in some cases, even saved them — providing media that helped set legal precedents for same-sex married couples, educating political leaders, preventing teen suicides and providing a lifeline to the larger community for isolated LGBT youth. We couldn’t be more grateful or proud to have had your partnership in our important work.
This announcement is bittersweet, but also exciting. We will have additional details that we can share soon regarding how ITLM’s archive will continue to help shape public dialogue, fight anti-gay media and inspire a new wave of compelling and provocative LGBT stories that will change hearts and minds.
In the meantime, we hope many of you will join us in celebrating ITLM’s legacy and hearing more about our future at our annual awards gala honoring Tim Gill, Jane Velez-Mitchell, and Paris and Christopher Barclay on Monday, October 1st at the beautiful New-York Historical Society in New York. The event will have the special significance of commemorating the end of an era and the beginning of a new one.
From the bottom of our hearts, and on behalf of the ITLM Board and staff, thank you for so many years of encouragement, collaboration and support. We could not have accomplished all that we have without you. We hope to see you on October 1st!
If you have any questions regarding the gala event or this announcement, please do not hesitate to contact our Interim Executive Director, Ellen Carton, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Henry van Ameringen
Jayne Baron Sherman