8th November 2007
Dutch focus on international gay rights abuses
12:55 PM — LGBT rights organisation COC Netherlands has welcomed research initiated by the Dutch minister of Foreign Affairs and Development Cooperation into gay rights.The report, published yesterday, found that homosexuality is still a punishable crime in half of the 36 countries that have a development relationship with The Netherlands.Penalties in those countries range from imprisonment to death penalty.
US workplace protection bill passes 3
12:35 PM — After weeks of delay, the Employment Non-Discrimination Act has been passed by the US House of Representatives.It passed by 235 to 184 - 35 Republicans joined 200 Democrats and voted for the bill.159 Republicans were joined in voting against by 25 Democrats, many of whom were angry that protections for trans people had been removed from the bill.
Republican candidate advertised on gay dating site
11:30 AM — Being the Presidential hopeful with the heaviest Web advertising presence can be a difficult position to be in - sometimes it means your campaign ads will show up in unexpected places.Republican candidate Mitt Romney is finding that out the hard way, according to a recent article in The New York Times. Apparently, banner ads saying "Mitt Romney for President — Vote Team Mitt!" appeared on website gay.com for two days in August, appearing at least 32,000 times.
7th November 2007
Australian leader concedes gay equality in superannuation 13
4:29 PM — A leading member of the Australian Liberal party who is fighting to retain his parliamentary seat has announced a small change in policy in an attempt to win vital gay votes.Malcolm Turnbull last night promised that if re-elected his party will allow interdependent gay couples to share each other's public pensions and super benefits.It may prove to be too little too late for the minister, who is fighting to retain the Sydney seat of Wentworth in the November 24th general election.
NY politician wants gays at St Patrick’s Day parade 1
1:01 PM — New York City Council speaker Christine Quinn, who is openly gay, has said that the city's St. Patrick's Day parade next year should include gay people and representatives from Northern Ireland.The New York City parade is organised by the Ancient Order of Hibernians, an Irish-Catholic fraternal organisation.They have refused to allow gay and lesbian groups to march in the parade since 1991.
Gay MP questions David Cameron over incitement law
12:45 PM — The Leader of the Conservative party has been challenged on his position on a proposed new law to make incitement on the grounds of sexual orientation an offence.Yesterday the government announced that the proposal would extend to trans and disabled people.Chris Bryant, the MP for Rhonnda, tackled David Cameron during yesterday's debate on the Queen's Speech.
Lesbian couple push for full marriage rights in Ireland
11:01 AM — A lesbian couple from the Republic of Ireland who married in Canada yesterday renewed calls to have the same legal rights as those in heterosexual marriages.Dr Katherine Zappone and Dr Ann Louise Gilligan took part in the first expert meeting on the recognition of married same-sex couples at the European Parliament in Brussels.They joined couples from across Europe who are seeking recognition of their marriage.
Dutch politician calls for ban on gays holding office 1
10:50 AM — A leading member of the ChristenUnie party, the third group in the Dutch ruling coalition, has demanded that practising homosexuals should be expelled from administrative positions in the party.Yvette Lont, councillor for Amsterdam South-East, announced that she would be proposing a motion for the exclusion of practising homosexuals from senior party and government posts at the forthcoming party congress on November 17, according to Dutch newspaper Trouw.
6th November 2007
Homophobic Prime Minister of Poland leaves office
7:01 PM — Jaroslaw Kaczynski has handed in the resignation of his cabinet, officially bringing an end to the Law and Justice-led government who had been in power in Poland since autumn 2005.Prime Minister Mr Kaczynski handed his resignation documents to his twin brother President Lech Kaczynski, during a ceremony at the Presidential Palace in Warsaw yesterday.His resignation follows his party's defeat in elections held last month.
Lib Dems accuse government over equality legislation
5:25 PM — A Liberal Democrat spokesperson has accused the government of dragging its heels over equality issues.Jo Swinson claimed that discrimination law is in a mess and that the proposed Single Equality Bill is "long overdue."A spokesperson for the Government Equalities Office said that work on the bill has not fallen behind and that it will be introduced in this parliament as promised.
Interview: New equality commissioner on gays as sinners 39
4:41 PM — This interview was first published in June 2006"Why is anything which is not from the gay position defined as homophobic," asks Joel Edwards, general director of the Evangelical Alliance, a Christian charity and lobby group in its 160th year of using a commitment to Christ and the Bible to engage with society.My view of evangelicalism has often been megaphone-wielding preachers in Oxford Street telling shoppers to accept Jesus, or having leaflets shoved into your hand telling you homosexuality is a one way route to hell.
Anti-gay Christian appointed to equality body 39
4:31 PM — The general director of the Evangelical Alliance has spoken of the "huge challenge for Christians" living in a liberal democracy after his appointment as a commissioner to the Equality and Human Rights Commission.Joel Edwards was a controversial choice for some gay rights groups.The Evangelical Alliance are one of the most strident voices against gay rights in the UK. Just last month they gave evidence against a new crime of incitement to violence on the grounds of sexual orientation.
Incitement law will extend to trans people 5
2:35 PM — The government will introduce a new offence of incitement to violence on the grounds of sexual orientation in the new Criminal Justice and immigration Bill, it has emerged.The Queen made no mention of the proposed new law in her Speech this morning, but a Ministry of Justice briefing document said that that they would be in the bill.Transgender and disabled people are to be included in the new law.
US Congress to vote on workplace protection law
2:11 PM — After weeks of delay, the Employment Non-Discrimination Act will be voted on today by the US House of Representatives.It is unclear if an amendment to re-introduce protections to trans people along with lesbians, bisexuals and gay men will be considered by lawmakers.The decision to remove trans people from the scope of the legislation caused anger among the LGBT community in the US, with many demanding an "all or nothing" stance on ENDA.
Rising gay populations in America’s “red states”
1:40 PM — An American sexual orientation think-tank has released a report that reveals a "gay demographic explosion" in some of America's most conservative regions.The Williams Institute for Sexual Orientation Law and Public Policy at UCLA released the report yesterday.The report used data from the 1990 and 2000 censuses and the US Census Bureau's American Community Survey (ACS) from 2002 to 2006.
Scottish Parliament considers gay hate crime law
1:10 PM — Scotland's lawmakers will today discuss new laws making violence towards gay and disabled groups be treated as seriously as violence incited on religious or ethnic grounds.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.
The Queen’s Speech in full
12:39 PM — My Lords and Members of the House of CommonsMy Government will take forward policies to respond to the rising aspirations of the people of the United Kingdom; to ensure security for all; and to entrust more power to Parliament and the people.My Government's programme will meet people's aspirations for better education, housing, healthcare and children's services, and for a cleaner environment.
Legal recognition for same-sex parents in Queen’s Speech
12:23 PM — The government has announced in the Queen's Speech a major change in the status of gay and lesbian couples who have a child through donated sperm, eggs or embryos.Her Majesty opened Gordon Brown's first session as Prime Minister this morning, and also revealed plans for a draft bill on citizenship and the establishment of a new agency to increase the number of affordable homes.The new Human Tissues and Embryos Bill, one of 28 bills announced today, has angered "family values" campaigners.
5th November 2007
Howard declines to say who would “turn him” gay 2
12:32 PM — The Prime Minister of Australia was asked an unusual question on the election campaign trail yesterday: Who would you turn gay for?68-year-old John Howard was campaigning at a shopping mall in Gosford, New South Wales, when "jeans shop worker" Danielle tackled him about that particular big issue.The PM laughed off the question, but his consistent refusal to grant equal rights for gay and lesbian Australians has been less easy to avoid.
4th November 2007
Former Equality Minister apologises for misspending public money 2
11:20 PM — Transport Secretary, Ruth Kelly, formerly Tony Blair's controversial choice as Equality Minister has been forced to apologise after misspending taxpayer's money on Labour party publicity.MPs are allowed to spend £10,000 of public funds on neutral leaflets but are not allowed to use them to make party political statements. A newsletter published this Autumn distributed to constituents in Ms Kelly's marginal Bolton West seat and paid for from her allowance, repeatedly refereed to 'Labour', 'Labour Party' and 'Labour Government'.