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Author photoMaryam Omidi

  • 13th November 2007

    Birmingham police criticised over gay pub raid 3

    The police have been particularly criticised because their only justification for the raid was an anonymous letter.

    10:50 AM — Police in the West Midlands have failed in their efforts to get a gay pub's licence revoked.Their request followed an earlier attempt to raid The Fountain Inn for pornography and drugs after receiving an anonymous tip-off.Police bungled the raid when they went to an Irish family pub, The Fountain, a mile down the road. The pub's drinkers were highly amused by the blunder.

  • Stonewall Cymru community liaison officer honoured 1

    Ms Porter works with the police and criminal justice agencies in Wales.

    10:10 AM — A Stonewall officer has won an award for "outstanding commitment to diversity" in her work tackling issues of homophobic hate crime.Jenny Porter, Stonewall Cymru's community liaison officer, received the award at the North Wales Criminal Justice Board Volunteer and Justice Awards Ceremony this week.Ms Porter works with the police and criminal justice agencies in Wales to develop ways of dealing with homophobically motivated hate crimes

  • 12th November 2007

    Life sentence for teenager guilty of homophobic murder 1

    Mr Kerr was found badly injured by a woman walking her dog in the park early on Sunday 22 April this year.

    3:19 PM — A teenager was sentenced to life imprisonment today for murdering a gay council officer in a homophobic attack.David Meehan, 19, admitted to murdering James Kerr, 51, in South Inch public park and leaving him for dead while he and his accomplices went to a party.According to Mr Meehan, the three walked past Mr Kerr on their way back but ignored their victim who was still breathing.

  • Americans warm to same-sex unions

    55 per cent of Americans approve of legalising civil unions and giving same-sex couples the same rights as those who are married.

    12:45 PM — More than half of Americans support civil unions according to the latest ABC News/Washington Post polls.In total, 55 per cent approve of legalising civil unions and giving same-sex couples the same rights as those who are married in matters such as insurance, inheritance and pensions.The latest figures are up from 45 per cent in the same poll in 2006.

  • New Polish PM pressed on civil unions

    The first test for the new government will be November 17th when the March of Equality in Poznan is planned.

    11:40 AM — Gay rights activists in Poland have asked incoming Prime Minister Donald Tusk to discuss legalisation of civil unions, the introduction of comprehensive sexual education in schools and the ban of discrimination based on sexual orientation.Mr Tusk is head of the centre-right Christian-democratic Civic Platform Party (PO), which won the election on 21st October.According to Catholic World News PO member Stefan Niesiolowski said: "I will not agree to homosexual marriage."

  • 6th November 2007

    Gay rabbi hits out at Bible-inspired homophobia 4

    Mr Greenberg is a symbol for the growing Jewish gay movement.

    10:10 AM — An Orthodox American rabbi spoke out against using the Bible to justify prejudice in a sermon yesterday.Steven Greenberg, America's first openly gay rabbi, shared his belief that the Bible is open to interpretation and should not be used to condemn homosexuality.According to The Columbus Dispatch, Mr Greenberg said: "No one can say, 'It says in the Scripture,' to ground any policy."

  • 5th November 2007

    Lesbian group’s transgender ban challenged

    The group only allows those who were female at birth to join.

    4:01 PM — An Australian transgender psychotherapist has taken a lesbian support group to an equal opportunities tribunal on the grounds of discrimination.Tracie O'Keefe in Sydney, claims that she was refused an invitation to an event organised by the gay organisation Sappho's Party because of their strict policy excluding transgender people.The group only allows those who were female at birth to join.

  • Army sexual orientation discrimination tribunal begins 2

    Ms Fletcher is claiming sex discrimination and discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation.

    2:15 PM — A lesbian soldier's life was made hell by a male sergeant who vowed to "convert" her, an employment tribunal will be told.According to Lance Bombardier Kerry Fletcher, 30, the senior officer told her that she had not yet experienced a "real man."He also added, "You don't know what you're missing."Her case is being heard at an employment tribunal in Leeds today. The Ministry of Defence said: "We take allegations of sexual discrimination seriously."

  • Daughter of homophobic activist is out and proud 1

    Ms Contrada is also starring in a high school production of The Laramie Project.

    12:54 PM — The daughter of a vehemently anti-gay activist has revealed that she is a lesbian.Claudia Contrada, whose mother Amy Contrada forms one half of the US hate group MassResistance, has stood up for young people struggling with homophobia in their homes or communities.In 2005, Mrs Contrada attended a conference which advocated sending gay teenagers to conversion camps. MassResistance is a homophobic organisation in Massachusetts, which has campaigned zealously against all pro-gay developments since its inception in 1995.

  • Gay teenagers are homecoming couple 1

    Principal Michael Cawley, who declined to comment on the election, only said that he hoped the issue would remain “low-key“.

    11:45 AM — A gay couple have made school history in the United States by being the first-ever elected homecoming prince and prince.Brandon Raphael and Kiernan Gatewood, both 16, wore sashes proudly proclaiming their royalty as they rode through the city of Davis, California, in the school's annual homecoming parade.According to the Sacramento Bee, "They stood in the back of a pick-up truck, arm-in-arm, smiling warmly despite the rain."

  • 30th October 2007

    Film to depict gay love of two Spanish icons

    Although their intimacy has been alleged, Dali repeatedly told interviewers that he rejected Lorca's attempts to seduce him. photo: Carl Van Vechten.

    10:14 AM — A gay love affair between two of Spain's most celebrated creative luminaries, painter Salvador Dali and playwright Federico Garcia Lorca, will be depicted in the new film, Little Ashes.Named after a Dali painting, the film chronicles the 18-year-old Dali's arrival in Madrid in the 1920s and his subsequent friendship with the dramatist Lorca.As the relationship between the two intensifies, the sexually repressed artist is unable to consummate the affair and instead watches as Lorca sleeps with a female friend.

  • 29th October 2007

    Candidate drops out of election over nude photos on gay sites 4

    A spokeswoman for the party said that Quah has been expelled because he “does not share the party's values.“

    5:45 PM — An Australian campaigner for family values has been dumped as a candidate by the Family First Party after nude photos of him were discovered on gay websites.Although Andrew Quah, 22, admitted that it was possible he had posed for two of the images, he claimed that a third had been digitally manipulated.Several websites are running the pictures, with one describing him as "Australia's Smallest Loser."

  • MP welcomes removal of “gay panic” defence

    Charles Chauvel said that the “gay panic“ defence was unacceptable.

    2:31 PM — A Gay Labour MP in New Zealand has praised the decision by the country's Law Commission to remove the "gay panic defence."Charles Chauvel said that the defence, which allowed a person charged with murder to claim that they were driven into a state of violent temporary insanity by a sexual advance from the victim, was unacceptable.The defendant rarely wins acquittals but if pleaded successfully the murder charge is reduced to manslaughter.

  • United Nations to host LGBT rights panel

    The Yogyakarta Principles refer to the application of international human rights law in relation to sexual orientation and gender identity.

    12:35 PM — Following the launch of the groundbreaking Yogyakarta Principles earlier this year, the United Nations will be hosting a panel discussion next month to explore discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.The event, which will bring together non-governmental organisations, UN representatives and state delegates, is an initiative co-sponsored by Argentina, Brazil and Uruguay.The Yogyakarta Principles refer to the application of international human rights law in relation to sexual orientation and gender identity.

  • Liverpool hosts a celebration of queer culture

    The event, the biggest to date, has a diverse and eclectic programme of art, theatre, music, dance, comedy, photography, debate, film and cabaret.

    12:05 PM — homotopia, Liverpool's annual celebration of gay culture, returns to the city this week for the fourth year in a row.The event, the biggest to date, will incorporate a diverse and eclectic programme of art, theatre, music, dance, comedy, photography, debate, film and cabaret.Highlights include the National Theatre of Scotland's Liverpool debut with their critically acclaimed performance of Venus As A Boy. 

  • 23rd October 2007

    Requiem concert to mark World AIDS Day

    World AIDS Day originated in 1988, at the World Summit of Ministers of Health on Programmes for AIDS Prevention.

    10:41 AM — The London Oratory School's Schola and a host of star soloists will mark World AIDS Day 2007 with a concert to raise funds and awareness.The internationally-acclaimed boy's choir will be performing the Gareth Valentine and Durufle versions of Requiem as well as the world premiere of a new commission by Colin Mawby entitled A Song of Hope. All proceeds will go to Terence Higgins Trust, the UK's leading HIV and AIDS charity, and SOS Children's Villages for children orphaned through AIDS.

  • 22nd October 2007

    Brazilian senator uses paedophilia to condemn gay rights 1

    In Brazil homophobia is widespread and activists claim that 2,680 gay people were murdered between 1980 and 2006.

    6:53 PM — A Brazilian politician has caused outrage by comparing homosexuality to paedophilia.Senator Magno Malta made the comment during a speech opposing a proposed new law which will classify homophobia as a criminal offence.Mr Malta said that allowing homosexuals to be openly affectionate in public would be the same as legalising paedophilia.

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