The family and friends of Irene Chavez held a press conference to seek answers about her death. Immigration Equality is doing important work for the LGBTQ immigrant community. It’s Kwanzaa and today’s principle is Ujima.

Show Notes

00:00 – Welcome & Intro

00:22 – The Qube Ad

00:45 – Intro Music

01:27 – The family and friends of Irene Chavez held a press conference to seek answers about her death

03:35 – Immigration Equality is doing important work for the LGBTQ immigrant community

05:10 – Harambee! It’s Kwanzaa

06:17 – Anna’s Got a Word

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About Queer News

An intersectional approach to a daily news podcast where race & sexuality meet politics, entertainment and culture. Tune-in to reporting which centers & celebrates all of our lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer & comrade communities. Hosted by Anna DeShawn. 7 minutes a day, 5 days a week, ready by 9 a.m.

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Family, this is your favorite Queer radio personality Anna DeShawn here with our Queer news from today.

The family and friends of Irene Chavez held a press conference to seek answers about her death. Immigration Equality is doing important work for the LGBTQ immigrant community. It’s Kwanzaa and today’s principle is Ujima. 

This morning we are continuing our coverage on the death of Irene Chavez. I’m going to preface this story by saying that it might be triggering so take a moment and decide if you’d like to continue listening. Our show notes include timecode so you can choose to move past this story. I’ll give you a second. As we reported yesterday Irene Chavez, a 33 year old Black Latinx Queer woman was found hanging in the 3rd district police station in Chicago on December 18th. This is after being taken into custody for an alleged misdemeanor offense at the Jeffery Pub the evening of December 17th. The Pub is an iconic LGBT bar located on the Southside of Chicago. Yesterday, her family and friends held a press conference at the 3rd district police station to get some answers. The police are saying this is still an active investigation and they provided the family a report but it was heavily redacted. According to WGN news the Cook County medical examiner’s office still has her death listed as pending 10 days after her body was found. Hear what her sister had to say, “I did my best to look out. I visited the headquarters, I asked the testers detectives questions. And I hit a red light, a stop sign a door every single time. And now I’m here to just really put out there that my sister was found hung in the Third District Police Department and holding while bounded apparently. And I’m not quite sure how something like that could happen. I do know that Chicago Police Department is here to protect and serve. And that comes with taking care of the mental state of the people that they take in. I’m not quite sure what happened with my sister again. But I do feel that if she had been found at a bar and maybe has some drinks that maybe the Chicago Police Department could have protected more.” Family, something ain’t right and I’m going to continue following this story. Irene Chavez, we speak your name. 

Now as part of our holiday stories you know I’ve been sharing  some organizations you can think about giving too during this holiday season. Next up is Immigration Equality. Immigration Equality is the nation’s leading LGBTQ and HIV-positive immigrant rights organization. Through direct legal services, policy advocacy, and impact litigation, they advocate for immigrants and families facing discrimination based on their sexual orientation, gender identity, or HIV status. They serve more LGBTQ immigrants than any other organization so they can spot patterns and trends that no one else sees. Their experience with the system fuels their legislative advocacy initiatives and priorities. In over 80 countries, it is a crime or fundamentally unsafe to be LGBTQ or HIV-positive. Worldwide, individuals face violence, prison time, or the death penalty due to their sexual orientation or gender identity. For that reason, Immigration Equality provides free legal services to LGBTQ and HIV-positive asylum seekers. Each year, they connect over 600 individuals with pro bono attorneys, and their staff trains and works with those lawyers to help their clients. Since they started an asylum program, their in-house attorneys and large pro-bono network have won asylum for over 1,200 individuals. I say, think about giving to this organization doing this very important work. You can learn more about them at or follow them on Instagram. 

Family, Habari Gani! Ujima, collective work and responsibility. We light the red candle farthest to the right as the black and green candles burn as well. Today we focus our energies on building and maintaining our communities together and to make our siblings problems our problems and to solve them together. We all we got.  It’s Kwanzaa and I’d love for this to be a way for us to interact with each other this week as we welcome in the new year. In the description below there is a link to talk with me via a platform called SpeakPipe. Leave me a voice message and tell me what the Kwanzaa principle for the day means to you. I’d love to share them as part of the podcast. If leaving a voice message is too much, drop a comment. I can share those too. Harambee! 

Y’all Insecure has ended. I watched the documentary and I love the show even more now. Le sigh. I digress.

These are our top Queer news stories for today and ya’ll know I always have a word. The word today is dreams don’t work unless you do. Are you just sitting around receiving all of these amazing visions from the divine and not doing anything with them? Do you have a dope idea and all you do is talk about it? Come on. Get to work. Time isn’t waiting on anyone and if COVID has taught us anything is that today isn’t promised. Get to it because those dreams. Those ideas. Don’t work unless you do. Till tomorrow family. Peace.


WGN 9 News

Family seeking answers after woman found dead at South Side police station


12 LGBTQ+ Organizations to Donate to This Holiday Season

Immigration Equality

Learn about Kwanzaa

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