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Law

  • 15th February 2007

    Gang of teenagers sentenced for gay abuse 1

    Bromley Youth Court heard how the youths shouted words like “batty boy“ and “queers“ at the men.

    11:18 AM — Four teenage boys who subjected a gay couple to a sustained harassment and abuse have pleaded guilty to public order offences.The children, aged between 14 and 16, followed the two men around a branch of Marks Spencer in Beckenham, Kent, hurling abuse at them and threatening them with physical violence.A magistrate has given one of the boys a conditional discharge and another a referral order. Two await sentencing.

  • 14th February 2007

    Transgender summit a first for Ireland 2

    The conference was organised by the Belfast Butterfly Club, a support network for transgendered people and their families.

    12:28 PM — An event being held in Belfast today aims to increase awareness of the existence of transgender and transsexual people in Ireland.The Transgender Symmetry conference is the first time such a gathering has been seen on either side of the Irish border.Richard O'Brien, presenter of TV show The Crystal Maze and star and writer of musical The Rocky Horror Picture Show, is attending the event.

  • Gaydar founder died of multiple injuries

    Mr Frisch, originally from South Africa, established Gaydar with his business partner and then-boyfriend Henry Badenhorst in 1999.

    11:00 AM — An autopsy was carried out yesterday on Gary Frisch, the co-founder of gay dating website Gaydar.Mr Frisch was discovered in the street on Saturday afternoon outside his eighth floor Battersea apartment. It is thought he either fell or jumped from the balcony.The autopsy found that the cause of death was multiple injuries.

  • 12th February 2007

    Gay harassment victim awarded £120,000 1

    Ms Cape called the behaviour of Mr Paul malicious and oppressive.

    4:19 PM — An employment tribunal in Glasgow has awarded huge damages to a gay man victimised at work.32-year-old Jonah Ditton was a media sales manager for CP Publishing Ltd for only eight days, yet the nakedly homophobic behaviour of his boss is reflected in the compensation of almost £120,000 he was awarded.This is the largest award ever for a case of sexual orientation discrimination.

  • Russia says it backs gay rights 4

    Patricia Prendiville, the executive director of the European branch of the International Lesbian and Gay Association, welcomed Russia's statement.

    3:03 PM — Despite banning Moscow Gay Pride last year, the Russian government has sent out a message of commitment to the rights of sexual minorities.In its capacity as current Chairman of the Committee of Ministers for the Council of Europe, the Russian Federation has stated that sexual minorities do have the right to freedom of expression and assembly, according to RainbowNetwork.com.They added that the police have a duty to protect such demonstrations when they take place.

  • Court bans gay partner health insurance

    Massachusetts is the only American state that can legally marry same-sex couples. It has been doing so since May 2004.

    1:22 PM — An appeals court in Michigan has banned public organisations from providing health insurance to partners of gay employees.The decision has caused outrage amongst American gay rights organisations.Last Friday Michigan amended its voter-approved ban on gay marriage to incorporate a ruling that prohibits universities and government bodies from recognising same-sex unions in the provision of health benefits. It is the first US state to do so.

  • Canadian cops seek out gay recruits

    Others attending the session said they were concerned their sexuality would be more valued than their qualifications.

    10:50 AM — Toronto police held a recruiting session in the city's gay village Saturday afternoon in an effort to diversify its ranks.According to the Canadian Press, the city's police service has made efforts to diversify by recruiting officers who reflect the variety of ethnic, religious and cultural backgrounds found across the city.Constable Gail Steed of the police employment unit told CP that the information sessions for the gay community are a natural extension of that outreach.

  • 9th February 2007

    Kids Pride supporter gets email death threats 2

    Hekma has lodged a complaint with the police against five people who sent specific death threats by email to him

    12:31 PM — An academic who supported the rights of kids under 16 to take part in Amsterdam's Gay Pride parade has received a flood of death threats.Gert Hekma, Professor of Gay Lesbian Studies at the University of Amsterdam, was not involved in the plan to allow gay kids to take part in the annual boat parade."I had only expressed my opinion as an academic that it seemed to me to be crazy that the legal age of consent is 16 years when children so much younger are now coming out the closet," he said.

  • New anti-bullying guide launched

    Workplace homophobia has been in the news this week.

    11:28 AM — Gay equality organisation Stonewall has produced a guide to help employers stop homophobic bullying and harassment in the workplace.It features practical examples of good practice currently being developed by a range of Stonewall's partner organisations including BT, Accenture, Manchester City Council, the Royal Navy and Barnado's.The guide explains the difficulties gay employees can face when reporting bullying.

  • 8th February 2007

    Lesbian lovers lies land them in jail

    Mr Mytton added that his client never thought Mr Austin would be remanded in custody.

    4:02 PM — Two former lesbian lovers have been jailed for making false claims against a man who subsequently spent two weeks in custody last August.25-year-old Kerry-Ann Austin, of Leyfields in Lichfield, was sentenced to two months in jail after lying to the police about her husband, Paul, breaching a restraining order not to contact her.Her lesbian partner Louise Howes, 29 - sister of Paul - was also given the same sentence.

  • Colombian court recognises same-sex rights

    It is still not clear how far the court's decision will go in recognising same-sex partner rights.  photo: dweekly@flickr

    10:58 AM — For the first time, the Constitutional Court in the South American state of Colombia has acknowledged the rights of same sex partners.Although homosexual relationships were decriminalised in the 1980s, serious human rights violations against LGBT people are commonplace.The country has been the scene of social unrest for decades, with powerful drug cartels challenging the authority of the government.

  • 7th February 2007

    £17,000 payout in discrimination case

    The tribunal found that the company did not deal with the complaints of homophobia correctly.

    2:10 PM — A gay man who was suspended for complaining about anti-gay graffiti has been awarded over £17,000 compensation by an employment tribunal.Chris Martin won his case against Parkam Foods last September. The West Yorkshire company supply pre-packaged meats to many of the major UK supermarkets.Since the introduction of the Employment Equality (Sexual Orientation) Regulations in December 2003 only a small number of cases have been brought to a tribunal.

  • Be confident to avoid attacks, advises charity 1

    If you feel at all threatened by someone, take evasive action. Move away, cross the road etc. and move towards somewhere where there are other people.

    11:23 AM — The Suzy Lamplugh Trust, a leading authority on personal safety issues, has said that LGBT people should develop techniques that help them to appear more confident and assertive in public.The trust says that confidence is a key weapon in avoiding hate crimes."Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people often rely upon 'being invisible' to remain safe," says the trust's chief executive Julie Bentley.

  • Man denied asylum for not having teenage sex 2

    Mr Orozco's lawyer argues that as his client is alone, uneducated and the victim of abuse he should be treated as a vulnerable person.

    10:58 AM — A refugee from Nicaragua has been denied asylum in Canada because he could not prove he is gay.The Immigration and Refugee Board said that as Alvaro Antonio Orozco was not sexually active as a teenager, it was impossible to verify his sexuality.Mr Oroxco's lawyer accused the IRB of stereotyping gay teenagers as more sexually active than their heterosexual counterparts.

  • Gay marriage banned again by Australian government 4

    In June 2006 the ACT government brought forward legislation to allow gay and lesbian couples the right to civil unions.

    10:29 AM — The attorney-general of Australia has confirmed that the federal government will block plans by one of the country's territories to legalise same-sex civil partnerships.Philip Ruddock said that the traditional marriage ceremony would be threatened by granting marital rights to gay people, an argument used repeatedly by Liberal party politicians.He also said that the Australian Capital Territory law would be a threat to minors.

  • 6th February 2007

    Clerk’s Valentines protest at gay inequality

    The constitutionality of California's current law banning gay marriage is currently before the state Supreme Court.

    10:48 AM — A county clerk-recorder in California is to hand out "certificates of inequality" to gay couples on Valentine's Day.United Press International reports that Freddie Oakley designed the certificates herself.She said she believes she should be able to give gay couples marriage licences.

  • 5th February 2007

    Gay policeman speaks out for LGBT History Month 2

    When Insp. Moore first became a police officer he did not feel confident enough to come out.

    2:05 PM — A gay police officer has given a newspaper interview about his sexuality in an effort to make the force more accessible to Bexley's gay community.40-year-old Phil Moore is an inspector responsible for 20 neighbourhood officers in the Bexley area of London.Moore joined the Metropolitan Police as constable in 1988 but did not tell his colleagues that he was gay until 10 years later.

  • Woman injured by letter bomb

    An area stretching from Westminster Abbey to Scotland Yard remains closed to the public.

    11:43 AM — Part of central London has been cordoned off after an explosion in an office building.What is thought to be a letter bomb detonated in the Capita building near well-known gay venue The Stag in Victoria.London Ambulance confirmed they had taken one person to hospital.

  • Trans rapist complains of jail prejudice

    Prison officers told Jessica to make a formal complaint.

    10:02 AM — A prisoner at the high security Whitemoor prison has complained that she is the victim of harassment by staff and inmates because he is transsexual.Jessica Winfield, formerly known as Martin, is serving a sentence for rape.Whitemoor prison, near March in Cambridgeshire, houses around 500 of the UK's most dangerous prisoners.

  • Nepal grants dual gender citizenship

    Sexual identity is complex in Nepal.

    9:40 AM — A 40-year-old in Nepal has been granted citizenship as both a man and a woman. It is thought up to 400 other Nepalese are seeking the same dual recognition.Chanda Rani received the official government document last week, where Rani's gender is listed as both male and female, announced the Blue Diamond Society, a gay rights group in Nepal."This is a landmark victory in our struggle," said Sunil Panta, president of the society.

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