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Politics

  • 23rd January 2007

    Labour MEP-led organisation calls for Kelly resignation 18

    Ruth Kelly should resign say GALHA

    10:22 AM — The Gay and Lesbian Humanist Association, (GALHA) whose Vice President is the former EastEnders star turned Labour MEP Michael Cashman, has called on the Communities Secretary Ruth Kelly to resign.Ms Kelly, who is a devout Catholic and a member of Opus Dei, has yet to clarify if she will allow the Catholic Church to opt out of adoption of children by gay couples.

  • 22nd January 2007

    Human rights group tell Tatchell to back off

    Mr Tatchell concluded that better communication is needed in the international LGBTI movement.

    2:00 PM — Calls last week from gay rights group OutRage! to pile international pressure on the Nigerian government have been blasted as unhelpful and counterproductive by New York-based NGO Human Rights Watch.On Friday, Peter Tatchell urged gay and lesbian people to contact the Nigerian goverment to show their opposition to draconian new laws aimed at outlawing same-sex marriage and restricting other gay rights.

  • Eagle speaks out against the “very, very few”

    Ms Eagle refused to comment on reports that there was a row between Prime Minister Tony Blair and MPs at a meeting of the Parliamentary Labour Party last Wednesday.

    1:39 PM — PinkNews.co.uk exclusive The vice-chair of the Parliamentary Labour Party has said that "very, very few" of the party's MPs want a change to the Sexual Orientation Regulations.Angela Eagle, the MP for Wallasey, spoke out after the Independent on Sunday reported that Communities Secretary Ruth Kelly wants to allow adoption agencies controlled by the Roman Catholic Church to turn away gay or lesbian couples.

  • Gay MPs lambast Kelly opt-out

    Mr Bryant, a former Anglican priest, said that although other churches and faith groups run adpotion agencies, “I have not heard of any other religions are asking for an exemption.“

    11:15 AM — Labour politicians and gay rights activists have responded to press reports that Communities Secretary Ruth Kelly wants to grant exemptions to the new Equality Act.The Independent on Sunday reported that Kelly wants to give Roman Catholic adoption agencies an opt-out from the Sexual Orientation Regulations, which outlaw discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation when accessing goods and services.

  • Online suicide bid highlights trans isolation

    Several NHS trusts in England have announced they are cutting gender reassignment surgery in an effort to balance their books.

    10:50 AM — A Welsh transsexual woman took an overdose of pills, then sent emails to health groups and media outlets, protesting at the way in which gender reassignment surgery is regarded.The unnamed woman, from Llanelli, swallowed a large quantity of painkilling medication and then sent the email suicide note.A friend of the woman called the police when he read the contents of her email.

  • Ruth Kelly in new row over gay adoption

    It is thought that Tony Blair supports Ms Kelly over the exemptions from the SOR for Catholic adoption agencies.

    10:10 AM — Communities Secretary Ruth Kelly has ignited another cabinet row over the Sexual Orientation Regulations.The new rules, which protect gay, bisexual and lesbian people in England and Wales from discrimination when accessing goods and services, are due to come into force in April.It emerged over the weekend that Kelly and Prime Minister Tony Blair want to exempt Roman Catholic adoption agencies from the regulations.

  • 19th January 2007

    Tutu stands up for gays 2

    Dr Tutu told journalists that gay hate was the same as racism. photo: Benny Gool

    5:12 PM — Legendary anti-apartheid campaigner Archbishop Desmond Tutu has urged his fellow Anglicans to focus on the problems facing Africa and stop obsessing over gay issues.Dr Tutu told a conference in Nairobi that the God he worships does not consider the position of homosexual clergy to be more important that AIDS.The former Archbishop of Cape Town is attending the World Social Forum in Kenya.

  • Prescott reveals a fear of gays 2

    Ben Summerskill, chief executive of gay rights lobby Stonewall, was clear that he for one does not think Mr Prescott was being anti-gay.

    4:36 PM — Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott has spoken to BBC Radio 4 about his days as a merchant seaman, and revealed that he was uncomfortable sharing a cabin with gay crew.The 68-year-old, who is due to stand down as Labour party deputy leader later this year, worked as a steward on the Cunard Line in the 1950's.A documentary about his time at sea, called Prescott At Your Service, has been made by the BBC radio station.

  • Matthew Shepard’s mum nominated for award

    Anyone can vote for Judy Shepard and the foundation at www.volvoforlifeawards.com

    4:13 PM — Gay activists in America are urging people across the world to vote for Judy Shepard, who has been chosen as a finalist in the fifth "Volvo For Life" awards.Mrs Shepard, Executive Director of the Matthew Shepard Foundation, has become one of America's most vocal advocates for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality.The foundation was created by Dennis and Judy Shepard in memory of their 21-year old son, Matthew.

  • Homophobic Muslim preacher faces police probe 2

    The controversial preacher was caught on camera at Green Lane Mosque in Birmingham.

    11:21 AM — The Birmingham mosque exposed in a Channel 4 documentary as a Mecca for extremist Muslims is being investigated by police after calls from an MP for police to intervene.The Dispatches programme, broadcast on Monday, showed undercover footage of preacher Abu Usamah calling for gay people to be executed.The controversial preacher was caught on camera at Green Lane Mosque in Birmingham.

  • 18th January 2007

    Controversial gay ex-MP demands pension

    Olexander claimed his expulsion was as a result of homophobia within the party.

    4:45 PM — The Australian former Liberal party MP Andrew Olexander is in the limelight once again.He is applying for an exemption to allow him to access a pension paid for by the taxpayer.Mr Olexander was a controversial figure in the Liberal party, roughly equivalent to the Conservatives in the UK.

  • Education Secretary stands up for gay song 1

    Alan Johnson, a candidate for the deputy leader of the Labour party once John Prescott stands down, stood up for gay rights during the recent Cabinet row over the Sexual Orientation Regulations.

    12:11 PM — Alan Johnson, Secretary of State for Education and Skills, has told BBC Radio 4 listeners that he would be happy if the song (Sing If You're) Glad To Be Gay is included in a book for schoolchildren.The Daily Express reports that the comments have "sparked a major row."

  • Gay homeless charity gets new chief

    16 year old Albert Kennedy fell to his death from the top of a car park in Manchester whilst trying to escape a car load of queerbashers.

    11:30 AM — The Albert Kennedy Trust (AKT), a charity that works with and supports homeless LGBT teenagers, has a new chief executive.Tim Sigsworth has joined AKT from the Lesbian and Gay Foundation in Manchester.Mr Sigsworth replaces Richard McKendrick, who left AKT at the end of 2006 to take up a new role as Director of Operations at Addaction.

  • 17th January 2007

    THT get £1.5m Lottery grant for youth project 2

    THT plans to establish boards of young people aged 13 to 18 in seven regions in England.

    5:56 PM — HIV and sexual health charity Terrence Higgins Trust has been awarded close to £1.5m by the Big Lottery Fund.The grant will be used to establish a sex and relationships education (SRE) project for young people across England.The three-year project will be launched in April with the title "Young Leaders," and will be directed entirely by the young people involved.

  • Gay-friendly Obama to run for President 2

    As well as being anti-war, Obama is pro-choice, favours civil unions for lesbian and gay couples and supports universal health care.

    10:24 AM — Senator Barack Obama took the first step on the road to the White House yesterday.The 45-year-old junior Senator from Illinois announced that he is forming an exploratory committee, which allows him to raise funds and put together a campaign.Obama is the only African-American in the Senate, and his candidacy is already being compared to that of President John F Kennedy.

  • 16th January 2007

    Arnie faces pressure from gay Republicans 1

    The Austrian-American has a poor record on gay rights.

    6:09 PM — The Governor of California, Arnold Schwarzenegger, is under pressure from gay activists in his own party to approve a gay marriage bill.The former action star is seen as a moderate Republican who learned to work with the Democrat-controlled state legislature since he took office in 2003.Now members of the Log Cabin Republicans, an LGBT lobbying group, are calling on the governor to treat gay rights as a civil rights issue.

  • Sir Ian to launch LGBT History Month 3

    The History Month seeks to reclaim the position of LGBT people in the curriculum and in wider society.

    10:05 AM — Actor and activist Sir Ian McKellen will be the featured speaker at the launch of LGBT History Month next month.The launch will form part of the annual Schools Out conference, on Saturday 3rd February at the Drill Hall theatre in London.Schools Out is one of the oldest gay campaigning groups in the UK.

  • 15th January 2007

    ENDA on the agenda as Congress returns to work

    The White House has already indicated that the President will veto ENDA if it makes it through the Senate.

    3:20 PM — As US legislators return to work in Washington today, gay rights activists are hopeful that hate crimes and workplace protection legislation will move forward in the coming session.The Democrats are in control of both the House of Representatives and the Senate.While politics watchers are immersed in the Presidential campaigns, all of the House and a third of the Senate are also up for re-election in November.

  • Gay Democrats unhappy with Leadership choice 1

    In 2004, with his eye on his failed bit for the Senate, Harold Ford reversed his past opposition to an amendment to the United States Constitution.

    2:17 PM — The National Stonewall Democrats today spoke of their deep concern that former Congressman Harold Ford, Jr has been named as Chair of the Democratic Leadership Council (DLC).NSD said the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community should closely scrutinise the record of Congressman Ford in light of the development.In 2004, with his eye on his failed bit for the Senate, Harold Ford reversed his past opposition to an amendment to the United States Constitution.

  • Gay unions in South Africa delayed by bureaucracy 57

    In the UK, churches are specifically barred from performing civil partnerships.

    2:17 PM — Lesbian and gay couples in South Africa hoping to get married in church are facing delays because of a backlog of people waiting to take a qualification exam.Government "registrars," called marriage officers, were all trained about the Civil Unions Act last year, before the Act became law.

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