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November 14, 2023

Danté M. Austin Scholarship awarded to local grad student

Michele Zipkin

Philadelphia Gay News

Drexel graduate student Sean Hyatt was chosen to receive the inaugural Danté M. Austin Scholarship Award. Members of the Philadelphia Chapter of the Gay Officers Action League (GOAL) created the scholarship to honor the legacy of Danté Austin, founding member of GOAL, LGBTQ+ activist, military veteran and Philadelphia deputy sheriff who died by suicide in 2019.

June 9, 2023

Fighting Stigma and Honoring Danté M. Austin

Matt Petrillo

CBS News Philadelphia

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- A group of local police officers and other public safety professionals aren't only fighting crime, and aiding the public, but they're also fighting against the stigma of being out in the public safety space. Meet the Gay Officers Action League of Greater Philadelphia (G.O.A.L.). Their building bridges through community outreach, which now includes the Danté M. Austin Memorial Scholarship, in honor of a founding member of the organization who passed away in 2019.

Nicholas Tees, Acting President of GOAL 2023

January 21, 2023

LGBTQ+ leaders don’t want Ivan Provorov’s boycott to overshadow an ‘amazing’ Pride Night

Giana Han

Philadelphia Inquirer

Even the most hockey-obsessed among those in attendance didn’t pick up that one Flyer, Ivan Provorov, did not take warmups. It wasn’t until fans left the building that they started to see the news that Provorov refused to participate in Pride Night, specifically skipping warmups to avoid wearing the Pride warmup jerseys.

August 31, 2022

Kensington elementary school renamed in honor of Gloria Casarez

Michele Zipkin

Philadelphia Gay News

In an effort to distance itself from a racist historical figure, Philip H. Sheridan Elementary School in Kensington opened this school year with its new name – Gloria Casarez Elementary.

May 18, 2022

Former deputy sheriff Dante Austin honored in memorial ceremony

Jason Villemez

Philadelphia Gay News

Former out deputy sheriff Dante Austin was honored in a May 13 memorial service hosted by the LGBT Fallen Heroes Fund in Washington, DC. Austin, who served as the Sheriff’s Office LGBTQ liaison as well as on the board of directors of Delaware Valley Legacy Fund, died by suicide in 2019.

Members of the Philadelphia Sheriff’s Office, Philadelphia Police Department, and family members of Dante Austin at the May 13 LGBT Fallen Heroes Memorial Ceremony. (Photo via Philadelphia Sheriff’s Office / Facebook.)

November 25, 2021

Finding joy in troubling times

Jason Villemez

Philadelphia Gay News

It can be difficult to be thankful amid such a turbulent time in history. Bad news and uncertainty seems to come in all varieties these days, from the pandemic to discrimination to the wealth divide and the general anxieties of everyday life. Watching channels like CNN or MSNBC all day could make one think that we are in a hopeless state without any sources of comfort or joy. The same goes for being on social media (perhaps it’s even worse there). But we do have things to be thankful for in November 2021, and they come in all shapes and sizes.

Members of the Greater Philadelphia Gay Officers Action League (GOAL) donated a holiday meal and celebrated with residents of Quads Housing, an LGBTQ home for youth ages 18-21.

March 6, 2021

Philly LGBTQ police officers call out D.A.’s office for covering remembrance wall

Tim Cwiek

Pennsylvania Capitol Star

The Greater Philadelphia chapter of Gay Officers Action League has sent a letter to District Attorney Larry Krasner expressing concern over a display of photographs honoring fallen police officers that was temporarily covered with a banner.

Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner (Facebook photo)

March 6, 2020

Philadelphia Police Academy just graduated its first openly transgender officer

Brandon T. Harden

Philadelphia Inquirer

Benson Churgai of Northeast Philadelphia is the first openly transgender recruit to graduate from the Philadelphia Police Academy. “I struggled for a long time with who I was,” Churgai said. "I knew that if I continued to live my life as [a] female, it was not going to work out.”

Officer Benson Churgai, center, is shown here with colleagues at the Philadelphia Police Training Center in Philadelphia. Officer Churgai is the first openly trans officer, shortly before this photo was taken Churgai had come out to his classmates in a prepared speech that received enthusiastic applause.
JESSICA GRIFFIN / Staff Photographer

December 1, 2015

‘Rainbow in the thin blue line’: Meet some of Philly’s LBGT police officers

Anna Orso

The response in the Gayborhood, among other places: “Oh my God, you wear a badge, and oh my god, you’re actually a lesbian?”

Left: Philadelphia Police badge Right: GOAL seal

November 27, 2015

LGBT police officers in Philadelphia area form chapter of GOAL

Katie Colaneri


While police-community relations have been under the national microscope, members of law enforcement in the Philadelphia area are working to improve relationships inside departments when it comes to LGBT officers. They have formed a chapter of a fraternal organization called the Gay Officer Action League or GOAL.

Philadelphia Police Department Headquarters (Kimberly Paynter/WNYY)
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