Jeffrey Sanker on White Party, Drugs, and LGBT Civil Rights

By: Joe Thompson

Thousands of gay men will descend on Palm Springs this weekend for an unending supply of boys, booze, dancing, sun and fun that is The White Party. What started as a weekend getaway event for the local LA boys has grown from 500 attendees to more than 25,000, with A-list performers like Grammy Award-winner Mary J. Blige who will be there this year.

Over the years the party has become known for its images of buff, built, sexy, shirtless men, but in today's interview with The Advocate's Jeremy Kinser, founder Jeffrey Sanker says, "Anyone who wants to come and enjoy the sun, make friends and dance to the best music is welcome." Rave-style drug use can also be a part of the mix among attendees. To this, Sanker says, "Currently gay Mayor Steve Pougnet is serving the LGBT community and has the respect of everyone and works with us hand-in-hand on education and information in spreading the word, first and foremost, of a zero-tolerance policy for illegal drugs. No exceptions. The safety of our guests is always our number one priority. Of course there are always some exceptions, just like at sports games, concerts, and any large event. However, we have trained EMTs on duty, on-site throughout the weekend for any potential medical emergency that may arise. For White Party, we have been very blessed and the bonds of friendship carry over to everyone also looking out for each other."

You can read the entire Advocate interview here, or listen to Sanker's interview with Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson of OUTTAKE VOICES™. She asks Sanker about the parties, what attendees can expect this weekend, and where his focus lies with LGBT civil rights.

Hear more interviews at OUTTAKE VOICES™.
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