White House bisexual briefing: ‘You put the ‘B’ in LGBT’

White House bisexual briefing: ‘You put the ‘B’ in LGBT’
(Image: Screen grab of Stars and Stripes video, YouTube)

“You put the ‘B’ in LGBT”—these lyrics from a song performed in the White House last week encapsulate the message of the third annual Bisexual Community Briefing hosted by the Obama administration.

Although the president himself chose to attend another White House event that day (the 2016 White House Tribal Nations Conference), a White House staffer in the Office of Public Engagement, Raffi Freedman-Gurspan, the first openly transgender official in the Obama White House, opened the briefing, which lasted over two hours. The event was followed by an after party, video of which was posted by one participant. While one of its stated goals was to raise awareness of the “bi” community, the meeting received little coverage in the mainstream press, although several LGBT press outlets reported on it.

Freedman-Gurspan said topics would involve, among other things, bisexuals’ “disproportionate risk of mental and physical health struggles, poverty, addiction and violence and the need for fully inclusive non-discrimination protections.” After Freedman-Gurspan’s introduction, Faith Cheltenham, director of BiNet USA, took over as master of ceremonies.

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