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February 2008

  • 13th February 2008

    Rainbow flag flies over police headquarters

    LGBT History Month is being celebrated with hundreds of events across the country throughout February.

    5:15 PM — A police force named as the best employer for gay, lesbian and bisexual people in Scotland is celebrating LGBT History Month by flying the rainbow flag.The public display of support at Lothian and Borders Police headquarters in Edinburgh has been welcomed by gay rights organisation Stonewall, who compile the list of top employers.However, not everyone was pleased.

  • Census question is about sexuality not sex 5

    Information about individuals collected from the census is secret for 100 years and only the aggregate statistics are published.

    4:50 PM — A proposal to include a question on sexuality in the next UK-wide census has been backed by trade unionists and the Green party, but caused confusion among some people.A senior researcher who is an expert on LGBT issues told PinkNews.co.uk that any question must focus on sexual identity and not orientation.The academic, who asked not to be named, explained: "Some have put forward the argument that such a question involved someone's private sexual behaviour.

  • Copenhagen Pride threatened by financial crisis 1

    Copenhagen Pride is a week-long festival attended by tens of thousands of people.

    4:10 PM — The city authorities in the Danish capital Copenhagen have turned down a funding application from gay Pride organisers, which could threaten the week-long event."We need to find a more suitable solution, a spokesman for the mayor's office told leading Danish LGBT media outlet PrideRadio.dk."We had to turn down the Copenhagen Pride 08 application due to new procedures. It is important that no-one sees this rejection as discrimination towards the Danish gay community."

  • Heavy metal star encourages fans to come out

    Rob Halford came out in 1998 in an interview with MTV.

    3:00 PM — The lead singer of legendary British heavy metal band Judas Priest has spoken about being a role model to his gay fans.Rob Halford came out in 1998 in an interview with MTV. The band, nicknamed "Metal Gods," have sold more than 35 million albums.Halford left Judas Priest in 1993 after 20 years, but rejoined in 2003.He said coming out was like "freeing yourself" and said that his action had helped other metal fans to do the same.

  • Germany criticised by EU over gay discrimination 2

    The EU commissioner said that the partnership registration scheme available to German same-sex couples do not represent equal rights.

    2:25 PM — The European Union commissioner for employment, social affairs and equal opportunities has started an infringement procedures against Germany and eleven other member states for failing to implement EU equal opportunities legislation correctly.Vladimir Spidla said that the German government has failed to bring provisions on equal treatment of gay and lesbian partnerships in line with EU directives.He said that the partnership registration scheme available to German same-sex couples do not represent equal rights.

  • Spanish opposition leader targets gay adoption 2

    PP has promised to establish a new “family“ ministry if they win the elections next month.

    12:20 PM — The man who wants to be the next Prime Minister of Spain has said he will move to ban gay adoption in the country.Mariano Rajoy, who leads the conservative Partido Popular, said in an interview that he is ready to take away the right to adopt from gay couples.Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero has called a general election for March 9th.

  • Obama sweeps to victory in latest primaries 1

    In Washington DC Senator Obama took 75% of the vote, in Virginia 64%.

    11:35 AM — Presidential hopeful Senator Barack Obama won primaries in Virginia, Maryland and Washington DC yesterday, as his rival for the Democratic nomination faced serious questions about her campaign.Senator Hillary Clinton flew to Texas, a key state, as analysts pored over data that suggests her support among women, Hispanic and older voters may be weakening in the face of Obama's string of wins.

  • Lesbians sue in Colorado for right to marry

    The couple were arrested when the office closed for the day and issued with citations for trespassing.

    11:10 AM — A lesbian couple are asking a court to rule that an amendment to a US state constitution banning same-sex marriage is unconstitutional.Kate Burns and Shiela Schroeder argues that the voter-approved amendment is religious in nature.They are due to appear in court this week charged with trespassing. The couple were arrested in September last year.

  • Brighton walk will raise money for Stonewall

    Last year 300 people took part and the walk raised more than £40,000.

    11:01 AM — Gay and lesbian people and their friends have been signing up for a major gay day out in Brighton during the May bank holiday.The 5th Annual Equality Walk is a demonstration of solidarity against hate crime, a nice day out, a good bit of exercise and an opportunity to do a bit of star-spotting.The 10km stroll begins at the Pavilion Gardens at 2pm on Sunday May 4th.

  • Academics to discuss gay identites in eastern Europe

    LGBT rights have become a major political issue in countries such as Poland, Latvia, Russia, Romania and Slovakia.

    10:50 AM — A conference to be held in London is to examine the emergence of LGBT identities in central and eastern Europe.School of Slavonic and East European Studies at Universtiy College London is to hold a one-day conference on Friday 11th April.Since the fall of the Iron Curtain in 1989 new gay communities have emerged in many countries, and led to social and political unrest regarding their rights and visibility.

  • 12th February 2008

    New York tabloid’s “dehumanising” trans story

    The story is now inaccessible from the Daily News website.

    4:30 PM — American tabloid newspaper the New York Daily News has been condemned by gay activists for its reporting of the murder of a trans woman.On Sunday the paper published the headline Fooled John Stabbed Bronx Tranny. The story referred to the murder a 25 year old transgender woman named Sanesha Stewart.The Gay Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) complained to the paper.

  • South African police to act against homophobic officers

    Last week human rights groups and gay activists launched the 07-07-07 Campaign.

    4:02 PM — South Africa's Police Inspectorate has promised "decisive action" against officers who ridicule gay people or ignore homophobic hate crimes.Last week human rights groups and gay activists launched the 07-07-07 Campaign.On that day last year two lesbian women, 34 year old Sizakele Sigasa and 23 year old Salome Masooa, were raped, tortured and killed in Meadowlands, Soweto.

  • Gay rights leader attacked in Brazil 1

    Activists estimate that more than 2,680 gay people were murdered in Brazil between 1980 and 2006.

    3:40 PM — The President of Sao Paulo's Gay Pride Association was hospitalised after he was attacked at their offices yesterday.Alexandre Peixe dos Santos was gagged, hooded and beaten by an unknown number of attackers.The association organises one of the largest gay rights parades in the world. Last year three million revellers packed the streets of the Brazilian city in what officials have called the largest party in the world.

  • New gay travel portal launched

    www.gaypedia.com, kick-starts its campaign on Valentines Day.

    2:10 PM — A new online travel information and social networking portal launches this week with the aim of becoming the largest database of destinations, venues and events specifically designed for the gay and lesbian community.gaypedia.com provides top five destinations, venues and events; review, rating and blogging capabilities alongside member profiling and social networking tools.It is a user-generated and editorially produced travel information website that allows gays and lesbians to search for venues.

  • Clinton tries to lock down gay voters 11

    The former First Lady is facing a serious and sustained challenge for the Democratic party nomination from Barack Obama.

    2:05 PM — Presidential hopeful Senator Hillary Clinton has given an interview to an American gay newspaper in an attempt to portray herself as the obvious candidate for LGBT votes.The former First Lady, who is facing a serious and sustained challenge for the Democratic party nomination from Barack Obama, spoke to the Washington Blade on Sunday about issues such as workplace protection and hate crimes legislation.Her comments came just two days ahead of today's primaries in the states of Maryland and Virginia and Washington DC.

  • Rugby star Cohen backs gay players

    Cohen, 29, has a following in the gay community and has appeared at events in gay venues. photo: ben-cohen.com

    1:10 PM — England rugby union player Ben Cohen has spoken out about the absence of any openly gay players in the sport.Cohen, 29, who has a following in the gay community and has appeared at events in gay venues, last year moved to French club Brive after 11 years at Northampton Saints.Speaking to OutSports.com the winger said that in his opinion it "would be fine" for a rugby player to come out as gay.

  • Irish mostly comfortable with gay family 11

    The Irish government is expected to bring forward proposals for a form of civil partnerships in the EU nation at the end of March.

    12:45 PM — A new survey published ahead of proposed legislation to legally recognise same-sex relationships has found that more than half of Irish people would be unconcerned if their child or sibling is gay.The Sunday Independent/Millward Brown IMS poll did find that significant proportion of people would be "concerned."The high figures of acceptance, 53% unconcerned about a gay child and 56% a gay sibling, highlight the growing acceptance of LGB people in a society that only decriminalised homosexuality 15 years ago.

  • Unions demand gay question on 2011 census 25

    Final decisions on the content of the 2011 Census will not be made until the consultation and testing programme is complete and Parliament gives formal approval in 2010.

    12:20 PM — The General Secretary of the Trades Union Congress Brendan Barber has joined with gay equality organisation Stonewall's chief executive Ben Summerskill to ask for questions on sexual orientation to form part of the census.The next national survey will take place in 2011.It is conducted every 10 years by the Office of National Statistics (ONS), who announced last year that they did not think a question about sexual orientation would not be suitable.

  • Huckabee challenges result in Washington

    Huckabee defeated McCain by a narrow margin in the Louisiana Republican primary and beat him by a large tally in the Kansas caucuses.

    12:05 PM — Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee is refusing to concede a loss to Arizona Senator John McCain in the Washington Republican caucuses.The Huckabee campaign is asking for a full recount of the caucus votes in order to determine the true winner of the contest.McCain believes he won the race, but has conceded to Huckabee's right to ask for a recount.

  • 11th February 2008

    Romania moves to exclude same-sex marriage

    Romania only joined the EU at the beginning of 2007, at which time it was required to recognise same-sex couples registered in other member states.

    7:30 PM — A leading human rights group has condemned an attempt by Senators in the Romanian parliament to change the country's Family Code on marriage.The far-right Greater Romania Party's amendment, which defines marriage as between a man and a woman, was passed unanimously by the Senate Judicial Committee.It will need full Senate approval before it moves to the Chamber of Deputies.

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