LavenderHealth joins in celebration of the US Supreme Court ruling on Marriage Equality

Celebrating Marriage Equality – from!

Lavender Health - LGBTQ Resource Center

Today, the landmark ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court made marriage equality the rule of the nation!  While there are many challenges ahead, the fact that there are so many symbols, everywhere we turn, of support and utter joy, makes this occasion one for unrestrained celebration!  Watch this video of the comments made by the chief plaintiff in the case, Jim Obergefell, whose story is a moving example of the importance of this decision and its effect on health and well-being:

White house rainbow2

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Obama’s Eulogy for Clementa Pinckney

President Obama has had the sad task, too many times, of delivering eulogies during his remarkable Presidency.  Each one has been thoughtful, sensitive, and from-the-heart honest.  Each one, to me, has been well worth watching – but to me, the eulogy he delivered yesterday, June 26th, at the funeral for Clementa Pinckney, was more than excellent – it was a speech of historic proportions that may be his best ever.  It was the highlight of a week that brought a series of “good news” announcements for the President, each of which alone has great implications for his legacy, and as he approaches the last 18 months of his Presidency, he is admittedly emboldened to perhaps be more candid and honest than ever before.  But it was also the end of a week of great tragedy, with the country now riveted on yet another horrible crime of hate that took the lives of nine good people, and that has finally moved many to acknowledge one of the most troubling facts of our time – institutionalized racism. Throughout his presidency, Obama has maintained his very early message of “there is not a blue America and a red America, a Black American and a White America – there is the United States of America.”  In this eulogy Obama spoke the truth about the challenges of overcoming our deep divisions – the truth about so many challenges that we face in this country – with forcefulness and stunning heart-felt honesty.   If you missed this speech – watch it here now.

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Historic Wilma Scott Heide eBooks now available!

Today’s post on NurseManifest!


Wilma Scott Heide Wilma Scott Heide

Two books of major significance to the modern women’s movement are now available as eBooks – “Feminism for the Health of It” by Wilma Scott Heide, and “A Feminist Legacy: The Ethics of Willma Scott Heide and Company” by Eleanor Humes Haney.

Wilma Scott Heide was bom on February 26, 1921 and died on May 8, 1985 of a heart attack. One of the most respected of feminist/human rights scholars/activists in the world, Dr. Heide was a nurse, sociologist, writer, activist and lecturer. During her lifetime she actively demonstrated intellectual force, caring and commitment in articulating the women’s movement imperatives for society. She served as visiting professor and scholar at several universities, consultant to various state education associations and innumerable colleges, churches and many branches of the government, education and social organizations. In 1984 Wilma described herself as: Behavioral Scientist at American Institutes for…

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eBook now available – “A Feminist Legacy: The Ethics of Wilma Scott Heide and Company”

Back in the 1980’s, Charlene Eldridge Wheeler and I formed Margaretdaughters, Inc. – a feminist publishing company. Two of our books have major historical significance but they have long been out of print, even though it is possible to find stray used copies on the Legacy Coverinternet!  But now, I have converted them to eBooks, and one – A Feminist Legacy: The Ethics of Wilma Scott Heide and Company by Eleanor Humes Haney is now available in all the common ebook formats. Here is the link to the Kindle edition!  Soon Wilma’s own book Feminism for the Health of It will also be available – I will post a notice here when this happens!

Charlene and I connected with Wilma as a result of our reaching out to Barbara Schutt, a former editor of the American Journal of Nursing, for another project we were working on.  Barbara had worked with Wilma when Wilma, a nurse and the third President of NOW, was trying to convince the leaders of the American Nurses Association to endorse the ERA – a major undertaking to say the least!  They succeeded, and became life-long friends.  Charlene and I connected with Wilma to explore the possibility of her coming to Buffalo, New York, to speak for an International Women’s Day event that was being co-sponsored by Emma: Buffalo Women’s Bookstore and other groups in the community.  Wilma agreed!

Charlene and I spent several days hosting Wilma in our home, and engaging in long,

Ellie with Wilma, 1984

Ellie with Wilma, 1984

thought-provoking and fun conversation – Wilma had a marvelous sense of humor, which you will glimpse when you read the books we published!  We shared with her our first Margaretdaughters book – Peace and Power: A Handbook of Feminist Process.  Wilma told us she wept when she read it, wishing it had been part of her life long ago during the difficult years of her NOW presidency.  She told us about her doctoral dissertation, and before we knew it, we formed an agreement to publish her revised and updated dissertation as a book.  A short time later we connected with Wilma’s friend Eleanor Humes Haney, who had been writing a book about Wilma’s remarkable life – and Margaretdaughters became her publisher!

We worked closely with both Wilma and Ellie for several months, and had almost completed the final proofs of Wilma’s book when she died suddenly of a heart attack.  We traveled to Philadelphia for a memorial service on the campus of the University of Pennsylvania to share our sorrow as well as remembrances with many of Wilma’s friends and family.  Then we went back to work to finish up the final tasks of publishing the books which commemorate her life and work.

In preparing the books for eBook publication, I was amazed at how much of the content of both books remains so relevant today.  There are a few places where the ideas or the content are a bit dated, but these are so few and far between that it is very easy to forget they were written almost 3 decades ago.  They both offer inspiring ideas to energize the important work that so many of us continue – seeking a path of wholeness, peace and social justice for all.  I invite you to obtain your copy of Ellie’s book now, and return here with comments and feedback!  It would be terrific to have a discussion with you!

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Three brand new publications!

The past year or so has been crazy busy with major publications in the works, and now 3 of them have appeared almost simultaneously!  Two of these have histories dating back to the 1980’s! And they are actually all connected, in that they all revolve around the idea of emancipatory change and social justice.  EmancipatoryNursing

First, a wonderful book edited by Paula Kagan, Marlaine Smith and me – Philosophies and Practices of Emancipatory Nursing: Social Justice as Praxis.  This is a wonderful collection of original chapters written by some of the leading critical scholars in nursing.  Here is a flyer that gives you a 20% discount if you order directly from the publisher!  


KnowledgeDevThen another book – the 9th edition of the book that started out as a theory development book in 1984!  Maeona and I have coauthored this text throughout all 9 editions, with each edition bringing major new content!  This edition carries a new title that represents what we have been working for the entire 30 years!  The new title is “Knowledge Development in Nursing: Theory and Process.”  In this book we extend the concept of emancipatory knowing as fundamental to all that nursing is. 


And finally – an article that Adeline Falk-Rafael co-authored with me, just published in the Journal of Nursing Scholarship!  Peace and Power: A Theory of Emancipatory Group Process.  Here is the citation of the early view article: 

 Chinn, P. L. and Falk-Rafael, A. (2014), Peace and Power: A Theory of Emancipatory Group Process. Journal of Nursing Scholarship. doi: 10.1111/jnu.12101

This article has a history dating back to my membership in the collective of women who ran Emma: Bufflao Women’s bookstore.  It was in that collective that I first learned the essential elements of the process, resulting in the book that now has a companion Blog and Website! 

I hope that if you find your way to any of these publications, you will return here, and leave some comments and responses!  I welcome your feedback!  


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The Mémé Stories have gone public!

A little over a year ago, I was inspired to start a blog for my granddaughters – Sophie and Elodie.  Sophie was born on April 10, 2004 and Elodie was born on December 31, 2005.  The name their parents selected for me is Mémé.  I was present for both of their births- a gift from their parents that I will forever cherish!

Like most of us, almost from the days they were born, they have loved hearing stories – particularly stories about their Dad (my son Kelleth) and me as a little girl. And over the years they have found “favorites” – stories they ask to hear over and over again!  Most of

Elodie and Sophie Chinn

Elodie and Sophie Chinn

their favorites are simple, seemingly insignificant things – like the time that Kelleth, at about age 4, ran onto an elevator before I got there, and ended up on the elevator by himself after the doors closed!  They love any stories, of course, but when I am with them they want stories that reveal something of these grownups into whose world they have been delivered, especially stories that they can related to their own experience (running onto an elevator without your parents is not a good idea!!).

The problem is that for me, recalling stories on request around a dinner table is not something that comes easily!  But do I ever have the stories to tell .. stories that have little significance for the world at large, but stories that have deep meanings for them ..

Mémé with Sophie & Elodie, Dec. 31, 2010

Mémé with Sophie & Elodie, Dec. 31, 2010

meanings beyond anything that I can comprehend or know.  So I decided to start a blog of stories that come to me, inspired in part by experiences that I share with them in the ordinary course of daily life and launched “Mémé Stories for Sophie and Elodie” in April 2013.

When I started the blog, I decided to keep it private, and only share it with Kelleth and the girls.  But then Kelleth’s family expanded to include his wonderful wife Laura, and her son Camilo.  And there are other relatives and friends (you may be one of them) who enjoy my stories about Sophie and Elodie, and now Camilo (which are usually amazing!) and who might also be interested in these stories! And looking back over the stories posted so far (there are not that many actually!!) I could see no reason to keep this hidden from public view.

While the stories are quite “personal” in that they are stories of my past that arise from ordinary experiences I share with the “Chimzalez” family (their nick-name for their blended family that combines 3 surnames in the blend)  there is nothing “private” about them.  In fact, some of the stories have been the focus of many conversations I have had with friends over the years, as we have shared our lives in ways that reveal who we are and the past that has shaped who we are.

So I invite you to visit the Mémé Stories – even follow them if you wish!  And do not refrain from commenting!  Since the blog is “speaking” not only to Sophie and Elodie but also to all children growing up in today’s world, I especially welcome comments that speak directly to the children!  I am delighted to expand this inter-generational connection with my friends and colleagues around the world!  Most of all, if you visit the stories, I hope you enjoy!

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New article on Cassandra just published!

Elizabeth Berrey and I have an article that was just published in Sinister Wisdom titled 1-1_Nov_1982s_pdf“Cassandra: Lesbian (Non)Presence in Nursing!”  We were delighted to have this opportunity to document some of Cassandra’s history, while at the same time reflecting on what that experience meant to us!

For those wondering what that experience was, in 1982 a group of nurses at the American Nurses Association convention in Washington, DC, formed Cassandra: Radical Feminist Nurses Network.  We were gathered at the end of June, at the same time as the June 30th, 1982 “death” of the ERA.  Women and men from all over the country were gathered in the nation’s capitol to grieve the loss of that amendment, but also to express a commitment to move forward.  There were celebrations, concerts, demonstrations all over the district, and then there was the ANA convention.  For those of us present at the convention who also came because of wanting to be part of the ERA events, we were appalled at the utter lack of any indication, among the nurses gathered for the convention, that they even knew what was happening in the city.  We watched in appalled horror as the guest speaker for the maternal-child group exited his limousine  to enter the hotel for his appointed engagement – Orin Hatch from Utah, one of the most anti-woman members of congress.

Thus Cassandra was born!  I have a page on this site dedicated to describing Cassandra, and have posted links to all of our Newsjournals, published from 1982 to 1987.  And of course, now this article that Elizabeth and I wrote provides another dimension in recounting that history, and reflecting on what it meant at the time, and what it means in light of today’s perspective!

Here is the citation detail:  Chinn, Peggy L & Berrey, Elizabeth R (2014) Cassandra: Lesbian (non)Presence in Nursing. Sinister Wisdom, 92, (Spring), 50-64. The issue is packed full of other amazing writers by lesbian healthcare workers, many of whom are nurses!  So check it out at the Sinister Wisdom web site!

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Basketball – Which Final Four, and does it matter?

Womens_Final_Four_Tickets___2014_NCAA_Womens_Final_Four_Tickets___PrimeSportThe 2014 March Madness for college basketball has now passed, and now all that is left is the Final Four events for both women and men!  I happen to be at the University of Connecticut this week, of course celebrating the occasion with a host of other avid UConn basketball fans!  For those not following this madness, the rare occurrence of both the men and the women’s basketball teams from one school – in this case UConn of course – are



going to their respective Final Four tournaments.  This is very exciting on a number of levels, one being the simple rarity of this convergence.  The UConn women were not only expected to reach the Final Four, but are slightly favored to win the championship.  The men, on the other hand, were not expected to even reach the Final Four, so the suspense related to their performance in the Final Four is very intense!  The men’s coach is a former UConn player, who has never before coached a Final Four team!  The women’s coach has been at UConn for over 30 years, and if the women win the Championship, this will be his 9th national championship (a record!).  But despite these contrasts that are interesting, there are other contrasts that draw my attention, as an avid UConn women’s basketball fan, in a

Notre Dame

Notre Dame

kind of yin/yang way.

I blogged about the challenges of  homophobia in sports in general on my LavenderHealth blog on Monday.  But even today, signs of the persisting disparity in sports based on gender landed in my Inbox in the form of message from the UConn President, Susan Herbst (the first woman President!!). Her message acknowledged the excitement of both teams going to their Final Four Tournaments, urged everyone to “celebrate responsibly,” and included this information:

The university will open up Gampel Pavilion on Saturday, April 5, to all UConn students, so that you can watch the televised men’s game live with one another here on campus. The doors will open at 5:00pm. The game will begin shortly after 6:00pm and will be projected onto large screens that will be visible throughout most of Gampel.

Sunday’s women’s game will also be shown live on campus in the Student Union Theatre. Doors will open at 8:00pm and the game begins at 8:30pm.

Even without knowing anything about the UConn campus, I believe that you can detect the  disparity here.  Of course, everyone “knows” that the audience for the women’s game will



not be as large as the audience of the men .. right?  Are you sure?  The women’s team has commanded a fan base for years that matches or exceeds that of the men’s team.  And, if you plan for a smaller audience, are you not creating that reality in advance?

Then there is the matter of finding these games on television.  For this tournament that problem is a bit simpler because there are only 3 games for each.  But still, they are listed on the TV schedule as “College Basketball” and “Women’s College Basketball.”  When someone says “I am going to the Final Four” the assumption is that they are going to the men’s tournament. This is more than annoying .. it is symbolic of a lasting disparity that is sustained by the language we use.

So to me it does matter which Final Four we mean.  Karen and I will be watching both the men and the women tournaments.  But we cannot help but notice so many contrasts – some of which represent real progress for women (for example, 3 of the 4 teams in the women’s Final Four have women head coaches!).  All the while, it is important to be mindful of ways to address the disparities that persist  – one way is by our actions .. tuning in to the women’s games, talking



about the amazing emergence of women’s sports and what it means for so many young women as they are discovering their personal and collective strength and power.  This women’s tournament will be amazing .. there are two undefeated teams in the Tournament – UConn and Notre Dame!  One team will walk away with their winning streak broken, but all the young women on all of the teams competing this year have broken amazing barriers by just being there, for developing their athletic skills, and devoting their energies to inspiring other girls and women as their careers have unfolded!  So I cheer them all, even though for now I have to close with this … go UConn!



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Women working for peace in Ukraine

Today I received a message from Maureen Flaherty for the Peace and Power blog.  Maureen used Peace and Power in her work with women from the east and from the west  in Ukraine who joined together to share their visions of peace for their country.  Her workukraine was part of her dissertation in the Peace and Conflict Studies Department of the University of Manitoba.  When the recent  conflict in Ukraine broke out, I contacted Maureen to ask if she was in touch with the women she had worked with, and indeed she is!  Read her message on the Peace and Power blog, and leave comments there to convey your message of hope and encouragement for the women in Ukraine.  

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Jigsaw Puzzles, anyone?


Karen and me with our Roadtrek

My latest blog post is on the RVing Women FreeWheelers chapter web site – on the joys of jigsaw puzzles on a mobile device!  Recently I converted the FreeWheelers web site to so that we can easily include a blog, and involve more women in the chapter in managing and contributing to the site!  So my “jigsaw” post is one of our first of what I hope will be become a very fun and informative blog for all women interested in an RVing life style.

The fact is that even though I love going out and traveling in the RV, lately this has been set aside in favor of a few other projects and enterprises!  But regardless of the things that demand time and attention, having a solitary type of game of some sort to play helps me to settle my mind, taking attention away from the to-do list!  I love Sudoku and various games of solitaire, but my current favorite is jigsaw puzzles on the iPad!  If you have any recommendations for games along this line, let me know!  After all, you know what they say about all work and no play!!

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