Mardi Gras Oak Cliff parade today

Bead dazzling

Don’t let yesterday’s rain get you down. The sun is out for today’s Mardi Gras Oak Cliff celebration with its fourth annual parade. But it starts off with a crawfish boil and street party in the Bishop Arts District. Live music, food and beer will get you revved up for the parade. From Davis and Montclair to the Bishop Arts District, the parade rolls on through featuring floats, live bands, bicycle rides and more. And kinda makes us jealous of Oak Cliff.

DEETS: N. Bishop Ave at Davis St., 2 p.m., parade at 4 p.m. MardiGrasOakCliff.com.

—  Rich Lopez

Metro offers free bus rides on New Years Eve

Maybe there is such a thing as a free ride. Houston Metro is offering free bus and train fares starting at 6 pm New Years Eve and continuing through 6 am on New Years Day. Metro explains via press release that it “wants to help individuals celebrating the arrival of the New Year a safe option to get home rather than getting behind the wheel.”

As a bonus, the light rail is free on Sunday since it’s a game day, so if you are downtown and need to go to Reliant stadium, or at Reliant and need to go downtown, you’re set.

So when midnight rolls around on the 31st and it’s time to head home remember you have options. A DWI is a horrible way to start the new year.

—  admin

Watch: 2011 Rolls into Sydney, Australia – Happy New Year!

Sydney

Sydney rang in 2011 with a massive fireworks display.

Check it out, AFTER THE JUMP

Happy New Year to all our readers. Thank you for making it a great year for us. We wish you health and happiness, peace, prosperity and equal rights in the coming year.



Towleroad News #gay

—  admin

Office of Personnel Management Rolls Out Benefit for Partners of Federal Workers

Yesterday, the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) issued a memorandum instructing federal agencies to allow their employees to take leave without pay to attend to educational and medical needs of a same-sex partner’s child or elderly relative. Under a 1997 order by President Clinton, federal employees have been permitted to take up to 24 hours of unpaid leave for family support purposes, such as attending parent-teacher conferences or accompany a child or elderly relative to a routine checkup – purposes for which employees would otherwise have to use vacation time. Yesterday’s announcement makes such leave equally available to federal employees with same-sex domestic partners.

President Obama included this benefit in his June 2010 memorandum identifying additional benefits that could be extended to the same-sex partners of federal employees without additional action by Congress. However, extending key benefits – such as health insurance and retirement plans – does require legislation, and HRC continues to push Congress to pass the Domestic Partnership Benefits and Obligations Act, a bill that would ensure that LGBT federal workers and their families have access to those critical protections.

More information for federal workers on how to utilize family support leave is available here.


Human Rights Campaign | HRC Back Story

—  John Wright