31st March 2009
LGBT discrimination ‘widespread’ throughout EU 13
10:45 AM — Discrimination, harassment and violence against LGBT people is 'widespread' across the European Union, an EU report has claimed. The report, published today by the Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA), cited issues of hate speech, bullying in schools and discrimination in employment or healthcare for lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans people.
30th March 2009
Equality watchdog under pressure as three executives quit 1
9:07 PM — The Equality and Human Rights Commission, chaired by Trevor Phillips, has lost its chief executive and two commissioners in the last week. Nicola Brewer, the chief executive, has left to begin a new job, although her new position has not yet been disclosed.
Gay firefighter ‘killed himself after 15 years of bullying at work’ 6
4:36 PM — A man is seeking damages from a fire service after his civil partner killed himself after allegedly suffering 15 years of homophobic bullying and harassment at work. The man, who cannot be named, committed suicide on January 28th, days before his hearing was due to start.
Zurich elects lesbian mayor
1:55 PM — Zurich has elected its first female and first openly lesbian mayor, Corine Mauch. A member of the centre-left Social Democrats, Mauch has been elected with a lead of 11,000 votes over her opposition following the surprise resignation of previous incumbent Elmar Ledergerber late last year.
Bishop of Rochester to resign 14
1:19 PM — The Bishop of Rochester, Dr Michael Nazir Ali, has announced his intention to resign from his post to help Christians living in Islamic areas. The bishop, who has been outspoken on the topic of homosexuality, is 59 and was expected to serve until the age of 70.
Obama administration delays changes to military gay ban 19
11:06 AM — US Defence Secretary Robert Gates has said that the military's 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' policy regarding gay and lesbian service members is unlikely to be changed any time soon.
Comment: False hope – LGBT rights in the Middle East 7
10:29 AM — Omar Hassan explores the issue of LGBT rights in a Middle East ruled by conservatism.
27th March 2009
Japan gives citizens the green light for gay marriage abroad 2
5:56 PM — Japanese nationals can now wed their same-sex foreign partners in countries where same-sex marriage is permitted. According to reports, an unnamed government official said today that the justice ministry has instructed local authorities to issue documents pertaining to marriage to gay couples planning to wed abroad.
‘Sex predator’ fears block trans rights bill in New Hampshire 2
4:37 PM — The New Hampshire House yesterday rejected a measure aimed to extend discrimination provisions to trans residents after opponents dubbed it 'the bathroom bill'.
‘High number’ of gay and bisexual domestic violence victims in Northern Ireland 8
2:09 PM — The gay and bisexual community in Northern Ireland is suffering from disproportionate rates of domestic violence, an official report has claimed. The paper, published this week by the Northern Ireland Policing Board, concluded that a high percentage of those experiencing domestic violence are gay or bisexual men and women.
The Lancet: Pope ‘distorted science’ with condom comments 9
1:16 PM — Respected medical journal The Lancet has criticised Pope Benedict XVI over his recent comments on condoms and AIDS and demanded he make a retraction.
Melbourne Catholic Church to ‘test’ potential priests for homosexuality 35
11:12 AM — Melbourne Catholic Church has confirmed it is following Vatican recommendations to test would-be priests to ensure they are not gay. The head of the Vatican committee which released the guidelines has also stated that celibate gays must also be banned because homosexuality is ‘‘a type of deviation’’
26th March 2009
MP blames AIDS on ‘promiscuous men’ 28
11:36 PM — A Tory MP has said the "true case" of HIV/AIDS is "sexually promiscuous" men in developing countries. Speaking during Commons question time on Wednesday, Gary Streeter, the MP for Devon south-west added that there was more to the fight against the disease than access to drugs and condoms.
Elton John drops his legal case with the Guardian over spoof diary 5
7:13 PM — Gay icon Sir Elton John has dropped his libel claim against the Guardian over a spoof diary that joked he held fundraising events in order to meet celebrities.
Man accused of killing ex-boyfriend ‘phoned co-defendant repeatedly before attack’
7:01 PM — A Staines man accused of killing his ex-boyfriend by setting him on fire allegedly bombarded his co-defendant with phone calls in the weeks leading up to the attack, a court has heard.
New Hampshire House votes to approve gay marriage
6:49 PM — The New Hampshire State House today voted to approve gay marriage. The bill, if passed, would make it the third US state to allow gay couples to marry.
French Senate votes to recognise British civil partnerships 6
1:59 PM — France may soon recognise British civil partnerships if an amendment to the law is passed. Currently, British recognises French partnerships, known as Pacs (Pacte Civil de Solidarité) but France does not reciprocate this recognition.
Mayor Bloomberg shows support for gay marriage in New York 2
1:17 PM — New York mayor Michael Bloomberg has urged the state to pass a bill legalising gay marriage. Speaking last night at the annual dinner of the Lesbian, Gay Bisexual and Transgender Community Center in Manhattan, he said lawmakers must "do the right thing".
Vermont governor to veto gay marriage 12
10:13 AM — Governor Jim Douglas has announced his intention to veto the gay marriage bill if it passes the Legislature. At a news conference yesterday, the Republican governor said that the state's current civil partnership provision gave gay couples adequate rights and added that marriage should "remain between a man and a woman".
25th March 2009
New York Senator’s U-turn on gay marriage 1
5:02 PM — New York Senator Charles Schumer has revealed that after years of opposing gay marriage, he now supports it. The Democrat made his announcement at a meeting in a Manhattan restaurant but did not release news of his change of opinion until after it was reported by Empire State Pride Agenda this week.