Tuesday, February 24, 2009

On the Front Page: PFLAG Tulare Kings County

This morning's Visalia Times-Delta, in California, has a profile of one of PFLAG's newest chapters - PFLAG Tulare Kings County - on the front page of the paper's Living section. The article, which highlights the chapter's incredible work in the community, also profiles chapter founders Joan & Steve Palmer (pictured), who have been instrumental in the launch of two PFLAG chapters in the communities where they have lived.

"When we joined PFLAG, it's not because we needed support. We felt we had support to give," Steven Palmer said.

"So when they moved to Visalia in November 2007 for Steven's obstetrician and gynecologist job with the Family HealthCare Network, the Palmers saw the same need in Tulare and Kings counties as there once was in Placer County," the paper reports. "They soon began the footwork needed to start a PFLAG chapter here."

"PFLAG Tulare-Kings County was founded eight months ago, and now has 22 members. About 40 people attend monthly meetings, which are every third Sunday of the month."

"We were told when we came here that we would never be able to start a PFLAG here," Steven Palmer said.

"But a core group of members, including Dr. Kathryn Hall, a Visalia pediatrician who is a PFLAG board member, is dedicated to the organization because of the service it provides to the community," reporter Hillary S. Meeks writes.

"Hall is eagerly anticipating the wedding ceremony of her daughter, who is a lesbian, next August."

"She said PFLAG is a safe place for those who don't know how to deal with either their own sexual orientation, or a family member's."

"You can understand why it can be painful for a young person coming to terms with their sexuality to have their friends and neighbors so opposed to it, when it's not something this young person has chosen for themselves," Hall said. "And it can certainly be stressful for families."

To read the Times-Delta's full profile, click here. And be sure to visit Tulare Kings County online, too.

Photo by Johanna Coyne for the Times Delta.

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