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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, June 14, 2013 - Volume 41 Issue 24
New collaboration to aid LGBT military cybersecurity
Section One
ALL STORIES
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New collaboration to aid LGBT military cybersecurity

by Shaun Knittel - SGN Associate Editor

The LGBT Technology Partnership, a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization focused on ensuring that the implementation of public policies address the unique technological needs of LGBT communities, recently announced a new collaboration with OutServe-SLDN, America's LGBT military association, to begin soon with the joint launch of a series of cybersecurity tips to encourage greater awareness about privacy and security issues affecting LGBT service members.

'We are excited about this new collaboration with OutServe-SLDN and disseminating LGBT military-specific tips about staying safe and secure online,' said Christopher Wood, LGBT Technology Partnership co-founder. 'Studies show that LGBT communities are often the earliest adopters of new technology. The LGBT Technology Partnership's mission is to make sure LGBT communities are aware of the significant benefits but also the underlying challenges that come with the early adoption of new technologies. OutServe-SLDN, whose actively serving membership was originally organized via Facebook, is on the cutting edge of utilization of new technologies, and we are thrilled to be working with them.'

LGBT Technology Partnership co-founders Wood and Joseph Kapp became involved with OutServe-SLDN through the group's first 'hackathon,' hosted in Washington, D.C., last month and aimed at bringing some of the best and brightest minds together around the new mission adopted by the military organization's board of directors in May. In a piece published this week on the Huffington Post website, Kapp explained why the Partnership was compelled to become more involved following their participation.

'As a result of their hackathon, OutServe-SLDN hit upon some creative new approaches to the significant objectives that remain to be accomplished to create true LGBT equality in our military. It was a truly inspiring moment. Formerly closeted service members and experts in military law and policy sat around the table with developers, communications experts, and other allies to grapple with big existential questions that organizations face and their intersections with technology that can improve value propositions and enhance the mission. The LGBT Technology Partnership team was proud and happy to be able to participate and provide our own input,' Kapp wrote.

CHANGING THE CULTURE
Allyson Robinson, Army veteran and OutServe-SLDN executive director, praised the Partnership's work and welcomed them to the OutServe-SLDN team.

'What Joe and Chris are organizing is unprecedented in the LGBT community, and OutServe-SLDN is proud to once again be an early adopter. We appreciate their commitment to helping our members protect themselves, their families, and their careers in this post-'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' environment where LGBT service members lack nondiscrimination and equal opportunity protections and Transgender service members are still required to serve in silence and fear. The Partnership gets our long-term mission of creating an inclusive and accepting military and they know, as we do, that changing laws and policies is the easy part - real culture change takes much longer,' she said.

The collaboration announced today also will include involvement of the LGBT Technology Partnership in OutServe-SLDN's upcoming International Leadership Conference, set to take place in San Antonio, Texas, in October. It will also include contributing regularly to the content of OutServe Magazine, a publication of OutServe-SLDN and the nation's only periodical dedicated to LGBT military and veteran life.

On its website, the LGBT Technology Partnership says it 'encourages the continued early adoption and use of cutting-edge, new and emerging technologies by providing information, education, and strategic outreach for LGBT communities. We are a national, nonpartisan group of LGBT organizations and high-technology companies whose mission is to engage with critical technology and public policy leaders for strategic discussion at all levels. The Partnership ensures that cable, telecommunications, and high-technology issues of specific concern to LGBT communities are addressed in public policy conversations.'

Visit www.LGBTTechPartnership.org for additional information.

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