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Current Affairs

  • 1st October 2007

    Church of Norway votes to allow gay pastors 1

    The Bishops voted six to five for the measure

    5:37 PM — Bishops of Norway's Lutheran church voted on Tuesday by a close majority to allow gay pastors, a church official told a press conference.The Bishops Conference, a seven-man and four-woman panel of 11 Norwegian bishops, voted six to five for the measure, said their official representative, Olav Skjevesland.Theological doctrine currently followed in the Norwegian church officially excludes people living in a homosexual union from officiating at services.

  • UK Peer challenges Russian Patriarch over gay rights 1

    Homosexuality is “an illness“, according to the Russian Patriarch

    5:37 PM — Lib Dem peer Lord Russell-Johnston fought back today when Russian Patriarch Alexy II called homosexuality an "illness" at an international human rights conference.Addressing international MPs at well-respected human rights watchdog the Council of Europe, the Patriarch said: "This [homosexuality] is an illness, a change, a distortion of a human person."

  • Doctors acquitted on charges of infecting thousands with HIV

    Over 20,000 Canadians were infected with Hepatitis C and HIV because of the blood product

    5:37 PM — Monday morning in Alberta,. Canada and a judge acquits four doctors, a New Jersey company and a former Red Cross official of criminal charges regarding a tainted blood scandal in the 1990's.Because of improper screening, over 20,000 Canadians were infected with the Hepatitis C and HIV virus from a controversial medical blood product.

  • Scotland considers new law to protect gays 1

    Green MSP Patrick Harvie lodged the private members bill yesterday

    5:37 PM — Scotland's lawmakers are set to consider new laws to protect gays after a private members bill was lodged in Holyrood yesterday calling for violence towards gay and disabled groups to be treated as seriously as violence against religious or ethnic groups.The Sentencing of Offences Aggravated by Prejudice (Scotland) Bill, proposed by Patrick Harvie, a Scottish Green MSP, would bring Scotland into line with England and Wales, where courts have been able to impose tougher sentences for offences committed due to the victims disability or sexual orientation since April 2003.

  • Police adopt softly-softly approach on public orgies 17

    The fair, a celebration of sadomasochism, attracts around 40,000 visitors

    5:37 PM — American police adopted a distinctly relaxed approach to this year's Folsom Street Fair in San Francisco, taking little notice of the hundreds of men baring their genitals on every street corner.Orgies of men fellating and fondling each other in the street provoked laughs and photographs from curious onlookers but no police action, according to reports.Two reporters for Americans for Truth about Homosexuality documented prevalently older men walking down the street completely naked.

  • Massive march for lesbian rights hits South Africa

    The lesbian march took place in the township of Soweto, an urban area in Johannesburg

    5:05 PM — A massive march calling for greater protection for South African gays has erupted on the streets of Soweto following the murder of two lesbians last July.The women, 34 year old Sizakele Sigasa and 23 year old Salome Masooa were raped, tortured and killed in Meadowlands, Soweto.Their hands were tied up using their underwear and their tied ankles using their shoelaces. Both had been shot several times.

  • Ken: UK anti-discrimination law ‘not working’ 3

    “Britain's anti-discrimination law needs a major shake up“

    4:43 PM — London's Mayor, Ken Livingstone, has launched an attack against Britain's anti-discrimination law on the day the new Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) is established.The Commission brings together a number of anti-discrimination commissions into one equality body designed to enforced anti-discrimination legislation and offer employers, public sector bodies and individuals practical advice.But the mayor claims that the current level of legal protection is inadequate.

  • Child welfare unaffected by lesbian parents, study finds

    Lesbian mothers are more likely to be satisfied with their partner's parenting skills

    3:22 PM — The children of lesbian parents have similar levels of well being and child adjustment as those of heterosexual parents, a Dutch study has confirmed.Researchers from Amsterdam University looked at a hundred heterosexual couples and a hundred lesbian couples with children between the ages of four and eight who had been raised by couple since birth.While the child's well being remained identical in lesbian or heterosexual couples, the researchers discovered that several other factors were surprisingly different.

  • Irish government criticised by own Equality Authority over gay teachers

    90 per cent of teachers are employed in religious schools (photo: Flickr/ dave_mcmt)

    2:13 PM — The Irish Equality Authority has accused the Irish Government of hypocrisy over its commitment to gay rights after claims it is refusing to change laws that discriminate against gay teachers.The 1998 Employment Equality Act gives religious schools an exemption over discrimination law if employing someone will in it's view undermine the school's religious ethos. More than ninety per cent of teachers are employed by Catholic and other religious schools.

  • Killer Huntley on hunger strike over “gay lover” 1

    Ian Huntley has tried to commit suicide three times

    1:13 PM — The murderer of 10-year olds Holly Wells and Jessica Chapman, Ian Huntley, has gone on hunger-strike after prison authorities denied him access to his gay lover, a convicted killer by the name of Dean Wood.Wakefield prison authorities have so far denied four of the pair's requests for a visit, and the 33 year old has now decided to raise the stakes."I have not eaten and I will not," Mr Huntley said.

  • Top Tory: BNP voters ‘legitimate views’ 10

    David Cameron has defended Baroness Warsi's comments

    12:10 PM — The Conservative shadow secretary for community cohesion has caused outrage in political circles by claiming that BNP voters hold some "very legitimate views."Baroness Sayeeda Warsi, a Muslim, was one of David Cameron's most celebrated appointments to the front bench earlier this year, but her comments have reopened accusations of a drift to the right on the eve of Mr Cameron's vital leader's speech at the party conference.In an interview with the Independent, Baroness Warsi said: "There are a lot of people out there who are voting for the British National Party and it's those people that we mustn't just write off and say 'well, we won't bother because they are voting BNP or we won't engage with them'.

  • Nearly half of Brits face discrimination

    Trevor=Phillips will chair the new body

    10:49 AM — Research conducted for the new Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) indicates that 46 percent of Brits believe they have faced some form of discrimination.The new commission, which incorporates the Commission for Racial Equality, the Disability Rights Commission and the Equal Opportunities Commission, is being launched today.Its Chair, Trevor Phillips, said: "We live in an age of difference where most of us believe that people must be judged on their abilities, not their age, what they look like, their disability or their families and private lives."

  • 30th September 2007

    Will Cameron make it three in a row for Stonewall? 3

    Shadow Cabinet member Theresa May is scheduled to speak at tomorrow night's Absolutely Equal event in Blackpool - but will Mr Cameron make it three in a row for Stonewall and put in an appearance?

    6:40 PM — As the Conservative party conference began in Blackpool today, speculation about whether or not Prime Minister Gordon Brown will ask the Queen to dissolve Parliament and call a general election continues to mount.While election fever grips the press, PinkNews.co.uk is just as interested in whether Mr Cameron will find time to attend the "gay disco" in Blackpool tomorrow night, more formally known as the Absolutely Equal reception.

  • 29th September 2007

    Will shamed Senator Larry Craig resign tomorrow? 7

    Senator Craig promised to resign by tomorrow

    9:30 AM — Tomorrow, is the day by which Senator Larry Craig said he would resign from office after he was arrested in an airport bathroom sex sting, but it appears the embattled Republican isn't necessarily going anywhere any time soon.Shortly after Craig pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct, the Idaho senator said he would try to clear his name before the proposed resignation date. If he could accomplish that task, he suggested at the time, he may reconsider that decision.

  • Gay NYPD officer suing for discrimination

    While serving with the 79th Precinct, he took his partner to a work Christmas party.

    9:22 AM — An gay police office has claimed that he was threatened with violence and verbally abused by fellow officers and was treated unfairly by supervisors at the New York Police Department (NYPD).Michael Harrington, 30, made the claims in a lawsuit filed with the Manhattan Supreme Court.Other officers called him a "faggot" and one said he would hurt Mr Harrington if confronted, he claims.

  • 28th September 2007

    Congress may split workplace protection bill 21

    The two bill proposal from Congressman Barney Frank would rescue the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) from defeat in the House of Representatives.

    6:20 PM — Efforts by American lawmakers to protect LGBT people from employment discrimination are under threat from Congressmen not convinced of the need for gender identity protection.In a compromise, it has been proposed that two bills be introduced - one extending civil rights based on sexual orientation and another for gender identity.The upshot of this would be the defeat of the trans protections that are not supported by some Democratic lawmakers but the likely success of workplace protections for gay, lesbian and bisexual Americans.

  • Three months in prison for homophobic abuse 1

    Despite denying charges, Mr Makemson was convicted of common assault and threatening behaviour.

    5:21 PM — An Essex businessman has been sentenced to three months in prison after drunkenly threatening and shouting homophobic abuse at his neighbours.43-year-old asbestos contractor Stuart Makemson of Twelve Acres, Braintree, brandished a snooker cue at Andrew Morrison saying: "I'm going to take that nose off your face with this."Mr Morrison and his wife had been woken earlier by Mr Makemson verbally abusing their gay son and his boyfriend, reported the Essex Chronicle. 

  • Tory leader’s wife spoke up for gays 2

    A close friend of David and Sarah Cameron has revealed that the party leader's wife persuaded her husband to support the abolition of Section 28.

    5:05 PM — An out gay Conservative who is a close friend of David and Sarah Cameron has revealed that the party leader's wife persuaded her husband to support the abolition of Section 28.Speaking to The Guardian Nick Boles, founder of the Policy Exchange thinktank, said that David Cameron's change of heart on gay issues was in part due to Sarah.Referring to Mr Cameron's previous support for Section 28, Mr Boles said: "I think she had a much stronger sense of how unacceptable that piece of legislation was."

  • Lord Browne bounces back with board appointment

    Lord Browne is to join the board of Foster + Partners as a non-executive director.

    4:30 PM — The former chief executive of BP who was forced to resign after allegations made by his ex-boyfriend became public is to join the board of a leading architects firm.The Mail on Sunday newspaper was responsible for exposing that Lord John Browne lied in court documents about where he met his former lover, Jeff Chevalier.Lord Browne is to join the board of Foster + Partners as a non-executive director.

  • Harman’s attack on Tories fuels election fever

    Ms Harman's crowd-pleasing closing address did nothing to quell election fever.

    4:15 PM — Secretary of State for Equality Harriet Harman attacked Tory attitudes to gay couples in her closing speech to the Labour party conference yesterday.In an address to the party faithful that set the tone for a general election widely tipped to be called next week, she called the Conservatives the "nasty party," a phrase first used by Tory frontbencher Theresa May.Ms Harman attacked the opposition party's plans for a tax system that rewards married couples and civil partners above single or unmarried parents.

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