24th October 2007
“Homosexual” baby advertising campaign divides Italians 2
2:35 PM — An advertising campaign featuring a new born baby with a band on its wrist with the word 'homosexual' written on it has caused a row in Tuscany.The government of the Italian region is poised to display thousands of copies of the poster in public places and municipal offices as part of a campaign against discrimination.The tagline on the posters - Sexual Orientation Is Not A Choice - has divided gay people, while conservative politicians are outraged that public money has been spent on it at all.
Foster couple quit over refusal to “promote” being gay 6
10:01 AM — A Christian foster couple have had an 11-year-old boy removed from their care for refusing to condone homosexuality.The Daily Mail claims that Vincent Matherick, 65, and wife Pauline, 61, refused to sign a contract saying they would tell children it is "good" to be gay and take them to gay association meetings if they are curious.The couple, who have fostered 28 children through Somerset County Council, are to be struck off the list by social services.
23rd October 2007
Tories “missing the point” of gay questions for elderly 1
4:05 PM — Conservative MPs have attacked a social care authority for issuing forms to elderly care home residents which include a question about their sexual orientation.The Daily Express last week reported that thousands of the new "quality assurance" packs have been sent to every care home in England by the Commission for Social Care Inspection.An organisation that works for better services for older LGBT people told PinkNews.co.uk that the MPs have missed the point and are in denial that any old people could be gay.
Requiem concert to mark World AIDS Day
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
Gay activists picket Saudi embassy 9
12:39 PM — Students and members of OutRage! took to the streets of London last week to protest about the treatment of gays in Saudi Arabia.Fifty people picketed the Saudi embassy after it was reported that two men had been sentenced to 7,000 lashes for "sodomy."The London protest was organised by the National Union of Students(NUS) LGBT campaign and supported by OutRage! It came just over a week ahead of the state visit to the UK of the Saudi head of state King Abdullah bin Abdul Azaz al Saud.
THT promotes use of post exposure treatment
11:45 AM — HIV charity Terrence Higgins Trust (THT) is re-launching its PEP campaign today, this time urging gay men to "Act Fast" with PEP (post exposure prophylaxsis).PEP is a month long course of HIV treatment that may prevent HIV infection after the virus has entered the body.The faster it is taken after someone has put themselves at risk, the more likely it will work.
Interview: The inside story of gay life in the US Air Force 1
11:41 AM — No sooner did Reichen Lehmkuhl become an overnight symbol of success for the gay community when he and then partner Chip Arndt took home the million dollar prize on The Amazing Race than the tabloids turned on him.The picture of domesticity turned failed gay union, the reality show star turned wannabe actor/beefcake calendar pinup, the front burner romance with boy-bander Lance Bass that crumbled under a they said, Reichen said battle of accusations.
Scouts pay for ban on gays
10:10 AM — The Philadelphia chapter of the Boy Scouts of America is facing a heavy price, in the form of $200,000 (£97,680) in rent per year, for its National Council's stubborn stance against admitting gays.Previously the Boy Scouts of America's Cradle of Liberty Council paid $1 a year to locate its headquarters in a historic, city-owned building.According to reports in the Philadelphia Inquirer, city officials raised the amount charged to the organisation.
19th October 2007
Bahamas police accused of harassing gay tourists 8
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.
Train crash driver had HIV test
12:55 PM — An inquest into a fatal collision heard how a closeted gay man killed when his car hit a passenger train was "tormented" had taken an HIV test the previous day.Bryan Drysdale, a 48 year old year chef, was inside a Mazda which hit the Paddington to Plymouth train at 100mph near Ufton Nervet, Berkshire, in November 2004.It resulted in seven deaths and 138 injuries, 18 seriously, when the impact turned the carriages of the train and made it slide down an embankment.
US study reveals prevalence of gay domestic abuse
12:15 PM — It may not be called spousal abuse because gay marriage is still not considered legal in most US states, but according to a new study in the Journal of Urban Health: Bulletin of The New York Academy of Medicine, gay men experience partner abuse at almost the same rate as women in heterosexual relationships.It's a little documented area of abuse, but this new study, which looks at victims of intimate partner violence, found that 32 percent of gay and bisexual men have been abused by their partners.
Dancing boys a mark of prestige in Afghanistan 4
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.
18th October 2007
Trader suggests memorial toilet for cruising playwright
2:10 PM — Demand for new public toilets in the London Borough of Islington has been highlighted by a local trader who is suggesting they be dedicated in memory of famous resident Joe Orton.The gay playwright, who was murdered by his lover at the height of his fame in 1967, famously used to cruise for sex in public toilets all over Islington.The Angel area has a high concentration of bars and restaurants and a paucity of public facilities.
EXCLUSIVE: Firefighters not at LGBT conference 1
1:30 PM — A group of firefighters who were the subject of tabloid news reports about a Bristol cruising ground did not attend a national conference tackling lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality in the fire and rescue service as originally planned.The firefighters hit the headlines earlier this month when it was reported that they had been disciplined for "disturbing" men cruising.In fact they were punished for being away from their station for no operational reason.
US military recruited on gay website 1
12:10 PM — The American Armed Forces placed job adverts on a gay networking site despite the fact that people who are openly gay, bisexual or lesbian are banned from serving.A spokesman for the Army National Guard told USA Today he was unaware of the adverts running on GLEE.comThe Navy has ordered that 8,000 ads be removed from the site. The Marine Corps claimed that only civilian jobs, not covered by the "Don't Ask Don't Tell" policy were advertised.
Charity aims to tackle needs of black gay men 1
10:03 AM — Gay Men Fighting AIDS has been awarded a grant by the Big Lottery Fund for their work around peer education projects and deliver health promotion initiatives to the black gay community in London.Sigma Research data from December 2005 found that black gay men are more likely to be diagnosed with HIV compared to other ethnic groups in the UK - 11.1% compared to 6.4% white British gay men - or have a partner with HIV.
17th October 2007
Turkish authorities try to close gay group 5
4:15 PM — An attempt by the Governor's Office of Istanbul to close down Lambda Istanbul, an LGBT group, has raised questions about human rights in Turkey.A department responsible for non-governmental organisations alleges that the group violates Turkish laws on morality.The Governor had asked in early 2007 that the group be shut down.In July local prosecutors rejected the complaint but the Governor's Office then took the case to a higher court which heard the case in July 2007 and ordered a second hearing which begins tomorrow.
Comment: The complexities of lesbian life in rural Texas
1:15 PM — Sometimes I find it difficult to even relate to lesbians who live in well populated metropolitan areas.I live in a very rural area of east Texas, where there is no lesbian or gay public presence to speak of. If you want to go to a pride parade, you can drive 130 miles to Dallas and catch one.If you want to go to a lesbian bar - same drive. There is one gay bar only 60 miles away, but it's predominantly for gay men.
No resignations over gay personnel says Navy 11
10:10 AM — The Royal Navy's equality and diversity officer has said there is no evidence that anyone left the service in protest at gay men and lesbians being allowed to serve openly.In 2000, the government removed the ban on gay, lesbian and bisexual people in the Armed Forces.A document obtained under the Freedom of Information Act appeared to shed light on the worries some military personnel had.
16th October 2007
DC to host LGBT economic summit
10:55 AM — Washington D.C. will host its first Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Economic Development Summit later this year, according to Neil O. Albert, the city's deputy mayor for planning and economic development.The goal of the summit, which will take place on November 3rd, will be to ensure that LGBT business leaders and entrepreneurs continue to play an important role in leading the economic and creative development of the city.