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Current Affairs

  • 30th April 2007

    Gay rights on the agenda as elections called in Ireland

    The Labour party's Civil Unions Bill was debated in the Dáil in February and was well received by all political parties represented.

    11:00 AM — Irish Prime Minister Bertie Ahern asked the country's President to dissolve Parliament yesterday.A general election will be held on May 24th. It is expected to be a close race.Last week a website was launched to raise awareness among the gay community of the forthcoming election.

  • US gay hate crime bill moves forward 7

    Most US states recognise the problem of hate violence.

    10:46 AM — Last week the Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act passed out of the Judiciary Committee.The legislation now makes its way to the floor of the United States House of Representatives for consideration by the full chamber."Law enforcement is now one step closer to getting the extra tools they need to combat hate violence," said Joe Solmonese, President of the Human Rights Campaign.

  • Discrimination protections become law 5

    After weeks of debate Tony Blair announced that faith-based adoption agencies have until the end of 2008 to comply with the regulations.

    10:28 AM — The Sexual Orientation Regulations come into force in Britain today.It is now illegal to discriminate on the grounds of sexual orientation when providing goods, services and facilities.Heterosexual people are also covered by the new law, meaning that it is now illegal to refuse them entry into gay bars.

  • 28th April 2007

    Police raid closes gay club for rest of the weekend

    PinkNews.co.uk has heard criticism of the police for taking photographs of clubbers (but not taking their names).

    8:10 PM — PinkNews.co.uk ExclusiveFire, the club raided by police in the early hours of Saturday morning has confirmed that they will be closed for the remainder of this weekend but will re-open for next week's bank holiday long weekend.Megan Jones promotions manager for Orange Club, who run Fire told PinkNews.co.uk : "The raid was civilised and with the full cooperation from staff and security personnel."

  • Clubbers filmed raid on gay club

    The A:M night at fire, taken at an earlier date (promotional photograph)

    4:00 PM — PinkNews.co.uk ExclusiveGay clubbers captured the police raid that resulted in the Fire gay nightclub being shut down by Lambeth police in the early hours of Saturday morning. Witnesses claim hundreds of police were involved in the raid.PinkNews.co.uk has heard criticism of the police for taking photographs of clubbers (but not taking their names). One reader pointed out that this was a particular worry for those not yet openly gay.

  • Concerns raised over police tactics during gay club raid

    Nine people were arrested in the raid that followed a three month long intelligence led operation into Class A drugs- codenamed Pivot.

    2:30 PM — The Fire gay nightclub has been temporarily closed following a raid by Lambeth police in the early hours of Saturday morning. Witnesses claim hundreds of police were involved in the raid.PinkNews.co.uk has heard criticism of the police for taking photographs of clubbers (but not taking their names). One reader pointed out that this was a particular worry for those not yet out.Nine people were arrested in the raid that followed a three month long intelligence led operation into Class A drugs- codenamed Pivot.

  • Gay nightclub Fire shut down after raid by police

    The A:M night at fire, taken at an earlier date (promotional photograph)

    1:50 PM — The Fire gay nightclub has been temporarily closed following a raid by Lambeth police in the early hours of Saturday morning.Nine people were arrested in the raid that followed a three month long intelligence led operation into Class A drugs- codenamed Pivot.Officers armed with a search warrant raided the club in Vauxhall at 2:15 am on Saturday. Suspects are being held in a central London police station.

  • 27th April 2007

    Gay MEP questions Tory tactics on homophobia

    Mr Cashman represents the West Midlands and is one of only two out gay MEPs.

    5:34 PM — Labour MEP Michael Cashman has strongly condemned the actions of Conservative MEPs who sided with extreme-right political groups in an attempt to suppress a debate on homophobia.On Wednesday the European Parliament voted to send a fact-finding mission to Poland to investigate a new laws that seek to suppress discussion of gay issues in schools.The extreme-right Union for Europe of the Nations (UEN) Group attempted to suppress the debate.

  • Gay bishop plans civil union

    Bishop Robinson lives with his partner of eighteen years, Mark Andrew, a state health care administrator.

    3:21 PM — Gene Robinson has welcomed the introduction of civil unions in the state where he is bishop, and said he hopes to take advantage of his new rights as soon as possible.His election as Bishop of New Hampshire in 2002 made him the first openly gay man to reach such a high position in the Anglican church.His elevation also caused an ongoing row within the church.

  • Edinburgh gays not reporting hate crimes

    The gay equality organisation are calling on LGBT Scots to use their votes in the elections for the Scottish Parliament next Thursday.

    2:59 PM — A new report has found that the majority of violent homophobic attacks in Edinburgh are not reported to police.The survey by Queen Margaret University found that only 37% of such crimes are brought to the attention of law enforcement.Gay rights groups cited an historic mistrust of police in a community where homosexuality was not decriminalised until 1980.

  • Welsh Tory candidate in gay row 3

    The Tory leader is campaigning in Wales ahead of elections for the 40-member Assembly next Thursday.

    2:41 PM — A Labour candidate for the Welsh Assembly claims his Tory opponent said homosexuality is a sin at a public meeting.Conservative leader David Cameron has defended the party's candidate in Clywd West, Darren Millar, claiming his remarks have been taken out of context.A party spokesman told the BBC that Mr Millar was merely pointing out that religious texts say homosexuality is a sin.

  • Polish PM backs “Section 28″ law

    For the first time Mr Kaczynski has spoken in favour of repressive new laws that would affect schools.

    11:58 AM — The Prime Minister of Poland has rejected the European Parliament's censure of his government's homophobia.For the first time Jaroslaw Kaczynski has spoken in favour of repressive new laws that would affect schools.He said that gay people did not face discrimination in Poland, but reiterated his view that homosexuality is bad for society.

  • Gay police will march in uniform at Pride

    Hampshire officers will be marching in uniform in this year's Brighton Pride parade on August 4th.

    11:20 AM — The ban on LGBT police from Hampshire marching in uniform at Brighton Pride has been lifted.The decision relfects a chance of heart by the Chief Constable of Hampshire Police, Paul Kernaghan.He previously banned all of his officers from gay Pride events over concerns that the impartiality of the police might be compromised.

  • Lesbian polygamist on the run 1

    Homosexuality is illegal throughout Nigeria.  photo: zouzouwizman@flickr.com

    10:55 AM — A Nigerian woman has gone into hiding after holding a sumptuous wedding ceremony.Aunty Maiduguri, 45, reportedly married four women at a ceremony in the city of Kano.The multiple marriage was witnessed by 2,000 guests and was followed by two days of feasting.

  • Brian Paddick to leave the Met early

    For all the controversy, Mr Paddick will be remembered for inspiring many other police men and women to be open about their sexuality.

    10:15 AM — The most senior gay police officer in the UK is to retire more than a year early.Brian Paddick, who is currently a Deputy Assistant Commissioner in London's Metropolitan Police, is understood to have asked to be allowed to stand down before the end of his current contract.He is to leave the force at the end of May. He has completed 30 years' service and will be entitled to a full pension.

  • 26th April 2007

    New Hampshire gets same-sex unions

    Today the Senate approved the bill by 14 votes to 10.

    6:45 PM — The New Hampshire Senate has approved a civil unions bill, which has now been sent to the state's Governor.Last week he indicated that he will sign the bill into law and it is set to come into force on January 1st 2008.The state will become the fourth in the USA to allow such unions. The bill previously passed the state's House of Representatives by a margin of 2 to 1.

  • Notre Dame lesbian wedding protesters fined one euro 1

    In June 2005 a lesbian couple in wedding dresses walked up the aisle of Notre Dame cathedral in Paris. photo: jswieringa@flickr.com

    4:26 PM — Gay activists in France who staged a mock wedding in the country's most famous church have been fined one euro (68p) by a court.In June 2005 a lesbian couple in wedding dresses walked up the aisle of Notre Dame cathedral in Paris and an activist dressed as a priest conducted a mock ceremony.In front of shocked tourists, the lesbian couple exchanged rings and kissed.

  • Gay bishop’s election “a great blessing” 1

    Bishop Jefferts Schori's appointment as head of the US Anglican communion last year caused even more tension.

    4:00 PM — The head of the Anglican church in the United States has praised the ordination of an openly gay man as Bishop of New Hampshire.While acknowledging that it may take many years to bring the worldwide Anglican communion to a common position on the issue of gay clergy, Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori compared the struggle for gay acceptance to slavery and female ordination.

  • No 10 petition asks for gay question on census 5

    Final decisions on the content of the 2011 Census will not be made until the consultation and testing programme is complete

    3:35 PM — Gay people are being asked to add their names to a petition calling for a question on sexual orientation to be included on the census.The petition is on the Prime Minister's website. The next national survey will take place in 2011.It is conducted every 10 years by the Office of National Statistics who announced last year that they did not think a question about sexual orientation would not be suitable.

  • Comment: Was Ted Heath gay? 4

    It is well known that many people deny their sexuality when it is inconvenient or illegal; such I believe was the case with Ted Heath.

    2:34 PM — Jeremy Norman, a successful gay businessman who founded the iconic London nightclub Heaven, was a friend of former Prime Minister Sir Edward Heath.In his autobiography No Make Up published last year, he devoted an entire chapter to Heath.Here he gives us his view on the current discussion of his old friend's sexuality. 

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