WASHINGTON

Order to expand protections

The White House is preparing an executive order offering transgender federal workers formal protection from discrimination at work, President Barack Obama announced Monday. At least two other measures already prevent the federal government from firing people for being transgender, so Obama’s announcement is largely symbolic. Still, advocates hailed the move as a powerful act of recognition for transgender Americans by the first American president to even utter the word “transgender” in a speech. The Human Rights Campaign, the nation’s largest LGBT rights group, praised Obama’s announcement as a “crucial and historic measure.”

LATTA, S.C.

Fired police chief back at work

Crystal Moore was in a police uniform and back on the job Monday as police chief of Latta, S.C. — more than two months after she says she was fired because she’s a lesbian. The tiny town, pop. 1,350, has rallied behind Moore, 42, who was born and raised in Latta and has served 23 years on the town police force. She was abruptly fired as police chief in April by the mayor, who was recorded making homophobic remarks in a phone call with a town council member. About 15 town residents greeted Moore on Monday when she reported to work at the police station. Residents voted 328-147 last week to change the town form of government from “mayor strong” to “council strong.” That paved the way for a 6-0 council vote Friday to endorse the change and rehire Moore as police chief. Mayor Earl Bullard, who has denied firing Moore because she’s gay, said she was removed as chief because she failed to maintain order and questioned authority.

NEW YORK

20 injured in shootings

A wave of violence swept New York City over the weekend as at least 20 people were shot, four of them fatally, authorities said Monday. The shootings, which included the separate woundings of 10- and 12-year-old boys, made for the third weekend in June that at least a dozen people were struck by bullets, police said. This year, 611 people have been shot in the city, compared with 554 for the same period last year. Homicides are down 11 percent this year, according to the NYPD.

YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK, CALIF.

Celebration marks 150 years

Yosemite National Park on Monday marked 150 years since President Abraham Lincoln signed an act protecting the park for generations of visitors. The celebration included a groundbreaking to launch a project restoring the Mariposa Grove, which consists of 500 mature giant sequoia trees that are among the oldest living organisms in the world.

Compiled from wire reports.