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Politics

  • 12th March 2007

    Gay rights activists rally in Rome 4

    Pope Benedict XVI said in a Vatican speech that the family “shows signs of ceding to lobbies capable of negatively eroding the legislative process. “

    2:46 PM — Thousands of Italians marched on Rome on Saturday to demand legal rights for unmarried same sex couples.50,000 activists, including leftists from Prime Minister Romano Prodi's coalition, took to a Roman piazza and rallied in support for a bill that would offer greater legal protection to unmarried couples.Some demonstrators wore bishop's mitres with slogans that attacked the Vatican.

  • 9th March 2007

    Gains for anti-gay party in Northern Ireland elections 1

    The only truly non-sectarian party, the Alliance,  has so far gained three seats.

    5:19 PM — The results of the elections for the Northern Ireland Assembly show big gains for Ian Paisley's Democratic Unionist Party.The DUP tried to overturn the Sexual Orientation Regulations, which outlaw discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation when accessing goods and services.The regulations came into force in the province in January.

  • Gays to march for their rights in Rome

    Famous figures such as Nobel literature prize winner Dario Fo, and his actress wife and senator Franca Rame plan to attend the demonstration.

    3:35 PM — Up to 50,000 Italian gay activists will campaign this weekend in Rome in support for same-sex unions.The campaigners will gather in the Piazza Farnese to voice their enthusiasm for the Dico Bill, which will grant gay and lesbian couples the right to make their relationships official, as well as to mutual assistance and inheritance.The bill is strongly opposed by the Catholic and right wing parties.

  • Republican activist defends porn career 1

    “I don't like porn, it reduces the mind, flattens the soul,“ Sanchez wrote on his blog and on Salon.com.

    3:26 PM — An ex gay porn performer seems to have repented his wicked ways - with a vengeance.Marine Corporal Matt Sanchez, formerly known as 'Rod Majors' and 'Pierre LaBranche,' has expressed conservative views about his eventful past."I don't like porn, it reduces the mind, flattens the soul," Sanchez wrote on his blog and on Salon.com.

  • Quebec DJ sacked for “club of fags” comment

    The Parti Quebecois advocate independence from Canada and the formation of their own French-speaking state in Quebec. photo: CKRS

    1:35 PM — A Canadian shock jock has been pulled from the airwaves for making homophobic comments about the Parti Quebecois and its local candidates during an election campaign.Saguenay radio host Louis Champagne fell foul of the authorities at popular radio station CKRS when he described the Parti Quebecois as a "club of fags."Champagne also said that local factory workers would not vote for gay candidates.

  • 8th March 2007

    Rapper’s documentary prompts MPs on bullying 1

    The rapper said he was delighted that the programme had been noticed in Parliament.

    5:58 PM — The Channel 4 Schools documentary Coming Out To Class has generated interest at Westminster.The programme, presented by gay rapper QBoy, talked to young people who had come out of the closet while still at school.Lib Dem education spokesman Stephen Williams was inspired to table an Early Day Motion in the House of Commons after the documentary.

  • Analysis: Nigeria attacks the heart of human rights

    Simply taking part in a gay or lesbian club or support group would be illegal.

    5:37 PM — Legislation proposed by the Nigerian government last year designed to ban and criminalise same sex marriages and those who assist with it, is expected to be enacted by the National Assembly before the April 2007 elections.The Same Sex Marriage Prohibition Act 2007 in its current form provides that persons of the same sex and those who marry them or is a witness thereto will be committing a crime with a mandatory sentence of five years imprisonment.

  • Blood donation and insurance companies get regulations opt-out 3

    The regulations already in force in Northern Ireland made no mention of blood donation or insurance companies.

    2:50 PM — The new Sexual Orientation Regulations contain an opt-out for insurance companies and blood donor clinics that allows them to continue to discriminate on the grounds of sexual orientation.The SORs, published yesterday, protect gay, lesbian and bisexual people in England, Scotland and Wales from discrimination when accessing goods and services.Regulation 27 provides an exception to the SORs where a person is treated less favourably on grounds of his sexual orientation.

  • MPs vote for an elected House of Lords

    The government plans to allow the 26 bishops and archbishops of the Church of England to retain their seats in the reformed Lords.

    12:25 PM — The House of Commons last night voted by a wide margin to have a fully elected House of Lords.The vote was not on an Act of Parliament and therefore will not immediately become law.It is thought that many traditional-minded MPs voted for the most radical proposal in order to scupper plans to elect a proportion of peers.

  • Catholic Church attacks gay rights bill 2

    Under the legislation couples would have be together for at least five years and sign a registry.

    12:11 PM — A conference of bishops has said that new legislation which will grant rights to unmarried straight and homosexual couples will weaken marriage.The new law was a manifesto commitment by the ruling leftist coalition of President Tabare Vasquez.The government of Uruguay has brought forward the new law, and it will be voted on by the lower house of parliament later this week.

  • Regulations will come into force on April 30th 1

    Catholic adoption agencies have until the end of 2008 to comply with the new laws.

    11:00 AM — New laws protecting lesbian, gay and bisexual people from discrimination when accessing goods and services will come into force at the end of next month.The Sexual Orientation Regulations will be subject to a vote in both Houses of Parliament before they can be implemented.The regulations were published by the government yesterday after months of political argument.

  • 7th March 2007

    Sexual Orientation Regulations published today 57

    The regulations come into force on the 30th April

    11:37 AM — The Government has today published the Sexual Orientation Regulations for Great Britain.Communities Secretary Ruth Kelly published the new regulations, which outlaw discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation in the provision of goods and services.The regulations come into force on the 30th April.

  • Government confirms protection but ends gay only bars 5

    Ruth Kelly said: “The Government, over the last decade, has done more than any other to build a decent and cohesive society“

    11:37 AM — The Communities Secretary Ruth Kelly earlier today published the government's planned regulations to protect from discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation.While it protects the LGBT community from discrimination, it means the legal end of gay or lesbian only bars.Ms Kelly, who despite being the combining her role as Communities Secretary and Minister for Equality has yet to vote in favour of gay rights.

  • 6th March 2007

    White House gay activist dies

    When President Clinton took office he appointed Hattoy to the Presidential Commission on HIV/AIDS.

    4:55 PM — An HIV+ man who worked as a White House aide to President Bill Clinton and spoke out against government indifference to AIDS has died aged 56.Bob Hattoy made a memorable speech to the Democratic National Convention in 1992, in which he told America that he did not want to die.He had just learnt that he had AIDS, and he castigated then-President George Bush senior for doing nothing about the disease.

  • Italian government split on gay partnership law 4

    The bill goes before Parliament today, and will also guarantee rights to unmarried heterosexual couples.

    2:22 PM — The Italian government stands divided over a bill which would give inheritance and healthcare rights to gay couples.The centre-left coalition government covers a variety of views on the subject, many of which are swayed by the country's staunch Catholicism.One opponent of the bill is senator Paola Binetti, a member of the conservative Catholic group Opus Dei.

  • Canadian leader tearful over anti-gay abuse

    Bosclair was elected as the sixth leader of the Parti Québécois in November 2005.

    11:24 AM — A homophobic attack by a radio host left Andre Boisclair, the Parti Quebecois party leader, clearly emotional while giving a speech on Sunday.Bosclair, an openly gay candidate for local election in the region of Saguenay in Quebec, choked up while talking about the importance of tolerance.

  • Hillary Clinton quietly courts the gay vote

    Senator Hillary Clinton spoke at a lunch hosted by Human Rights Campaign, the leading gay rights advocacy group in America.

    10:49 AM — The only female contender for the Presidency of the United States made an unpublicised appearance at a gay event on Friday.Senator Hillary Clinton spoke at a lunch hosted by Human Rights Campaign, the leading gay rights advocacy group in America.However, her office did not publicise her comments and yesterday she dodged questions as to why she spoke so warmly in favour of gay rights.

  • Riga Mayor backs Gay Pride march

    photo: robertpaulyoung@flickr

    10:19 AM — The new Mayor of the Latvian capital has backed gay rights march in the city later this year.In an interview with Diena newspaper, Janis Birks said he was ashamed at events last year, when bags of human excrement were thrown at gay marchers.Last month London Pride announced they would be "twinning" with Riga Pride as a sign of solidarity.

  • 5th March 2007

    Polish government rapped by EU over gay views 1

    He angered Kaczynski last week by asking the European Union to stop “homosexual propaganda“ and ban abortion.

    5:44 PM — Polish Prime Minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski summoned his deputy Roman Giertych for talks on Monday after he spoke out against homosexuality and abortion.Giertych is the leader of the League of Polish Families, a far-right party currently enjoying coalition with Kaczynski's ruling Law and Justice party.He angered Kaczynski last week by asking the European Union to stop "homosexual propaganda" and ban abortion.

  • Spain grants new identity rights to transsexuals

    The legislation follows the approval of same-sex marriages by the Socialist government in 2005.

    5:44 PM — The Spanish government has passed legislation allowing transsexuals to officially change their name and gender without needing to undergo gender reassignment surgery first.Despite opposition from the conservative Popular Party, the law progressed through the country's lower legislative chamber last week.The new legislation asks transsexuals to obtain and present an official medical diagnosis outlining a clinically proven case of gender dysfunction.

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