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Author photoJoe Roberts

  • 26th October 2007

    DVD Review: Poltergay is a camp Halloween treat 1

    What follows is a kind of supernatural Queer Eye For The Straight Guy.

    2:46 PM — When young couple Marc (Clovis Cornillac) and Emma (Julie Depardieu) move into their new home, a huge, run-down house that's been empty for years, all is not what it seems.For a start, there's the loud disco music that wakes Marc up every night, although Emma can't hear it.Giant images of winged penises begin to appear on the walls and a Polaroid camera photographs Marc showering, seemingly of its own accord.

  • 19th October 2007

    Policeman fined for homophobic remarks 6

    O'Kane was suspended from work following the incident.

    3:40 PM — A officer from Cleveland Police has been found guilty of making homophobic and racist remarks.At Teesside Magistrates' Court on Wednesday PC Peter O'Kane, of Queens Drive, Billingham was fined £600 and £950 costs after he was convicted of two public order offences, reports the Newcastle Evening Gazette. 25-year-old Mr O'Kane was overheard making the remarks on December 28th while out with a group of friends at the Oak Pub, in Middlesbrough, which has a predominantly gay clientele.

  • Bahamas police accused of harassing gay tourists 8

    Mr Xavier reported the incident to the US embassy and is now preparing to make his request to police.

    1:40 PM — A gay cruise-ship operator is demanding a public apology from the Royal Bahamas Police after they raided a party for LGBT tourists.DaJuan Xavier, Executive Director of Ebony Pyramid Entertainment, called the incident, which happened on Saturday October 6th at the Hard Rock Café in Nassau, an attempt "to harass, intimidate, and frighten."According to the Nassau Guardian, Mr Xavier reported the incident to the US embassy and is now preparing to make his request to police.

  • Dancing boys a mark of prestige in Afghanistan 4

    The practice of “bacha baazi“, meaning “boy-play“, is enjoying a resurgence in the North of Afghanistan.

    12:01 PM — Young boys are being sexually abused in Afghanistan in line with a tradition where they are bought by older men to dance at parties.The practice of "bacha baazi", meaning "boy-play", is enjoying a resurgence in the North of Afghanistan where ownership is seen as a status symbol by militia leaders according to Afghan news site, e-Ariana.While condemned by clerics and human rights groups, authorities are doing little to end it.

  • 12th October 2007

    Leading gay commentators question incitement law 100

    Gay equality organisation Stonewall hit back, saying there is a lot of misunderstanding about the proposed new offence of incitement to hatred on the grounds of sexual orientation.

    5:30 PM — Prominent gay journalists have expressed concern at proposals from the government to introduce a new offence of inciting hate against gay, lesbian and bisexual people.They believe it will undermine freedom of speech, adds little to existing laws and even plays into the hands of homophobes and bigots by allowing them to become martyrs.However, gay equality organisation Stonewall hit back, saying there is a lot of misunderstanding about the proposed new offence.

  • Young Tory resigns over homophobic Facebook group 6

    Bowman had posted comments on the relating homosexuality to the HIV virus and claiming he hates Jews.

    12:02 PM — A young Conservative student leader has been thrown out of the party and suspended from his university after making homophobic and anti-Semitic remarks on Facebook.Fergus Bowman, 22, a second-year politics and religion student at the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan), had earlier resigned as chairman of the student union's Conservative Future branch.Conservative Future is an under-30s organisation that plays an active role in recruiting young people into the party.

  • 8th October 2007

    Newcastle plans Pride 2008 3

    Northern Pride will be launched in July 2008 and aims to attract 3,000 people from the region and beyond by offering a wide-range of entertainment.

    10:12 AM — An annual celebration of the North East's lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities is being planned.Northern Pride will be launched in July 2008 and aims to attract 3,000 people from the region and beyond by offering a wide-range of entertainment.Run by a team of LGBT volunteers from the North East, organisers hope it will grow to become a mainstay of the region's cultural calendar in the same way as other Pride events in Manchester and Brighton.

  • 5th October 2007

    Prescott rejects Russian church leader’s gay hate

    Prescott joined parliamentarians from all the assembly's major political groups saying that any dialogue between cultures and religions must be based on mutual respect and tolerance.

    6:03 PM — John Prescott, the former British Deputy Prime Minister, joined European Parliamentarians yesterday in petitioning the head of the Russian Orthodox Church about his homophobic views.The petition read: "We urge Patriarch Alexy to avoid the use of language inciting intolerance and to respect, rather than seek to deny, the fundamental rights of sexual minorities."Russian Orthodox Patriarch Alexy II had called homosexuality an "illness" and attacked what he called "homosexual propaganda."

  • Conservative anger over cruising ground firefighters 41

    Avon Fire and Rescue Service is holding a conference in Bristol next week on lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) equality in the fire service.

    12:49 PM — A Conservative councillor is seeking to overturn the punishment of four firefighters from Avon Fire and Rescue Service who were reported after shining torches on gay men cruising in Bristol Downs.Bristol city councillor Spud Murphy labelled the decision to discipline the men for misuse of fire equipment and bringing the service into disrepute after the incident in June as "barmy", echoing outrage already shown by the tabloids.One of the men caught in the firefighter's torchlight later filed a complaint under advice from charity Terrence Higgins Trust.

  • THT launches drugs awareness campaign

    A free one-to-one counselling service for substance misuse and addiction is also available with drug councilors in their London offices.

    11:50 AM — Sexual health charity Terrence Higgins Trust has launched a new campaign this week to provide support and information to gay men about drugs, HIV and sex.The new scheme offers outreach work, one-to-one counselling and a series of information booklets examining how different drugs affect health, sexual behaviour and HIV medication.The Gay Men's Sex Survey (2005) showed that drug use was widespread amongst gay men. Men who use drugs were more likely to have unprotected anal sex.

  • 28th September 2007

    Congress may split workplace protection bill 21

    The two bill proposal from Congressman Barney Frank would rescue the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) from defeat in the House of Representatives.

    6:20 PM — Efforts by American lawmakers to protect LGBT people from employment discrimination are under threat from Congressmen not convinced of the need for gender identity protection.In a compromise, it has been proposed that two bills be introduced - one extending civil rights based on sexual orientation and another for gender identity.The upshot of this would be the defeat of the trans protections that are not supported by some Democratic lawmakers but the likely success of workplace protections for gay, lesbian and bisexual Americans.

  • Three months in prison for homophobic abuse 1

    Despite denying charges, Mr Makemson was convicted of common assault and threatening behaviour.

    5:21 PM — An Essex businessman has been sentenced to three months in prison after drunkenly threatening and shouting homophobic abuse at his neighbours.43-year-old asbestos contractor Stuart Makemson of Twelve Acres, Braintree, brandished a snooker cue at Andrew Morrison saying: "I'm going to take that nose off your face with this."Mr Morrison and his wife had been woken earlier by Mr Makemson verbally abusing their gay son and his boyfriend, reported the Essex Chronicle. 

  • Archbishop claims condoms are infected with HIV 7

    AIDS campaigners called the Archbishops comments 'nonsense' and defended the use of contraception.

    3:45 PM — The head of the Roman Catholic Church in Mozambique has claimed that some European-made condoms and anti-retroviral drugs are deliberately infected with HIV.Maputo Archbishop Francisco Chimoio's remarks, made at celebrations to mark 33 years of Mozambique's independence, have angered the country's many AIDS campaigners.Talking to a BBC reporter, the Archbishop Chimoio said: "Condoms are not sure because I know that there are two countries in Europe, they are making condoms with the virus on purpose."

  • Candidates OK with gay-themed children’s books 3

    The frontrunners for the Democratic party nomination for President in the 2008 election were speaking at an MSNBC candidates debate.

    1:50 PM — Presidential hopefuls John Edwards and Barack Obama have said they would be happy for their children to read stories featuring same-sex couples.Hillary Clinton was less enthusiastic, calling it a matter for "parental discretion."The frontrunners for the Democratic party nomination for President in the 2008 election were speaking at an MSNBC candidates debate.

  • Catholics call for boycott over SM apostles 1

    The Catholic League is asking a group of over 200 religious organisations, including Buddhists, Hindus, Muslims, Jews and Protestants to boycott the Miller brand.

    12:05 PM — A Roman Catholic pressure group is calling for a boycott of a brewing company's products after their logo appeared on a gay advert.Bill Donaghue, president of the Catholic League For Religious and Civil Rights, called for the boycott of Miller on US breakfast show Fox and Friends this morning.The move follows Miller's sponsorship of the Folsom Street Fair, which takes place on September 30th, during San Francisco's Leather Pride Week.

  • 29th June 2007

    Thai transvestites call for hotel boycott

    Thailand is usually considered to be quite tolerant of homosexuality and transexuality. photo: victoriapeckham@flickr.com

    4:15 PM — A gay rights group in Thailand is calling for a boycott of the Novotel hotel chain, after door staff refused a transvestite entry to their nightclub.Rallying under around the slogan, "Novotel - No Homosexual", the campaign is being led by the Bangkok Rainbow Organisation.They are urging gays, lesbians and katoeys, or ladyboys, to stay away from the hotel.

  • Poll shows next generation relaxed about gay marriage 1

    62% support a government financed national health-care system, compared with 47% of the general public.

    3:09 PM — Young Americans are much more likely to support gay marriage than their parents, a new poll by The New York Times, CBS News, and MTV has shown.The survey asked participants questions on a wide range of cultural and political issues. 44% of the 17 to 29 year olds surveyed believed gay couples should be allowed to marry.This is compared with 28% of the public at large.

  • Church weddings for Swedish gays a step closer 3

    Currently gay and lesbian couple can only register their partnership through a civil ceremony.

    1:23 PM — Sweden may become the first country to allow gays and lesbians to marry within a major Church.Under current laws, dating back to 1987, marriage is defined as being between a man and a woman.A new piece of proposed "gender-neutral" legislation however, may soon remove this distinction allowing anybody to marry in the Lutherian Church.

  • Ex-gay survivors speak out 1

    The Ex-gay Survivor Conference, which takes place at the University of California this weekend, has sent an open letter inviting Exodus leaders to attend.

    1:00 PM — As Exodus International, the network of "ex-gay" ministries which promotes "freedom from homosexuality through the power of Jesus Christ," finishes its annual conference in California today, former ex-gay survivors line-up to tell their own stories.The Ex-gay Survivor Conference, which takes place at the University of California this weekend, has sent an open letter inviting Exodus leaders to attend.

  • 27th June 2007

    Strong support for gay partnerships among Czechs

    The Czech Republic was the first post-communist to embed homosexual partnership.

    4:39 PM — Nearly 70% of adults in the Czech Republic believe that registered partnership should be available to gays and lesbians according to a CVVM poll conducted last month.This figure is up from 62% two years ago.The news comes almost a year after registered partnership, endowing inheritance, maintenance and hospital rights to same-sex partners, was made legal.

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