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UK

  • 26th November 2007

    Catholic adoption agencies seek ways round gay rules 18

    The Church was given 18 months to adjust its practices so that it can allow gay couples to adopt from its agencies or close them down.

    11:15 AM — Claims by the Roman Catholic Church that the government would be offering money to help them avoid new regulations in their adoption agencies have been dismissed by the Department for Children, Schools and Families.In a statement issued last week on the Catholic Bishops Conference of England and Wales website, they claim the government will "pay for further work to be done to explore whether within the law there might yet be ways found which will enable the adoption work to carry on and for our agencies to continue."

  • Man sues police over hammer attack

    Gareth Jeffrey had bombarded him with text messages threatening to kill him, which Mr Smith said he reported to officers.

    11:00 AM — A Brighton man is suing Sussex Police after he claims they did not protect him from the violence of his former partner.Stephen Smith, 38, was attacked with a hammer by a man he had met on the internet after he made it clear he did not want a committed relationship.Gareth Jeffrey had bombarded him with text messages threatening to kill him, which Mr Smith said he reported to officers before the attack took place in March 2003.

  • Government “split” over homophobic incitement law 5

    The Times reports that Baroness Scotland is concerned the homophobic incitement proposals will be blocked in the Lords.

    10:45 AM — The government's chief law officer does not support a new offence of incitement to hatred on the grounds of sexual orientation, according to a report in The Times. Baroness Scotland, the Attorney General, has privately clashed with Justice Secretary Jack Straw over the proposals, which form part of the Criminal Justice and Immigration Bill which is before Parliament.The Times reports that Baroness Scotland is concerned the homophobic incitement proposals will be blocked or watered down by the House of Lords.

  • Interview: Maria Eagle defends homophobic incitement law

    “People just think of us as “the Eagles.“ Sometimes I wish I had a pound for every time I get mixed up with my sister, because I'd be very rich.“

    10:00 AM — The government's proposal to create a new offence of incitement to hatred on the grounds of sexual orientation has not been met with approval by some leading gay commentators.Well-respected opinion-formers such as Times columnist Matthew Parris and Independent journalist Johann Hari have questioned the need for new laws.Parris said that the gay community does not need protection from ridicule.

  • 23rd November 2007

    “Gay for pay” woman convicted 1

    Yvonne Lesley Butler received a suspended sentence

    6:18 PM — A woman was convicted of benefits fraud against the Department for Work and Pensions and Swansea Council after she claimed she was a lesbian and had split from her husband.Yvonne Lesley Butler from Swansea claimed almost £20,000 in income support, housing benefit and council tax benefits between 2003 and 2006. She said that her husband Islwyn Butler had left her after she came out.

  • Greens launch campaign for Mayor of London

    Among the Green pledges unveiled at the launch of her campaign at City Hall was a “living wage“ of £7.20 an hour.

    2:09 PM — Sian Berry today launched her campaign to become Green Mayor of London.Earlier this year the 33-year-old won 45% of the party member's votes to become her party's candidate.Among the Green pledges unveiled at the launch of her campaign at City Hall was a "living wage" of £7.20 an hour for all Londoners working for public employers, cuts to off-peak travel fares and an increase in affordable housing across the capital.

  • Police investigate suspicious death of trans woman 15

    The police are treating the death as suspicious, and have asked anyone who saw Telesford between the 15th and 21st of November to contact them immediately.

    1:45 PM — A forty-year-old trans woman has been found dead at her home in south-east London, according to reports.Kayiode Dexter Telesford, who had been living for several years under the name of Kellie Telesford, died of strangulation at her home on Leander Road in Thornton Heath.The police are treating the death as suspicious, and have asked anyone who saw Telesford between the 15th and 21st of November to contact them immediately.

  • Undercover mission for gay millionaire 1

    Mr George was born and brought up on a Leeds council estate and now lives in a £3m castle in Calderdale.

    1:20 PM — Gay entrepreneur and mutli-millionaire Terry George will feature on an upcoming episode of Channel 4's The Secret Millionaire.The owner of Bent magazine and the 118 G-A-Y directory enquiries service admitted that when he was first approached to do the show he was sceptical but "cried his eyes out" when he watched the first series on DVD.In the show, participants agree to give £30,000 to people who they deem worthy of needing the money.

  • Mark World AIDS day with cycling and champagne at St Pancras

    After a drink at the Europe's longest champagne bar, which has just opened in the station, the fun moves to St Pancras Church. photo: alaskan dude@flickr.com

    1:01 PM — A cycling campaign group is planning to hold a ride to coincide with World Aids Day on December 1st.Southwark Cyclists' bike trek will start at the newly refurbished St Pancras International rail station. It is being held is in association with voluntary group The Food Chain, who deliver meals to men, women and children who are very ill as a result of HIV-related illnesses.Those who are taking part are being asked to contribute a donation of £10. All money goes to The Food Chain.

  • Zoo hosts anti-bullying event

    Young Anti-Bullying Alliance (Young ABA) is hosting a special event at London Zoo today to mark Blue Friday. photo © ZSL - Daniel Sprawson

    12:45 PM — The Young Anti-Bullying Alliance (Young ABA) is hosting a special event at London Zoo today to mark Blue Friday, the day when all children and young people are encouraged to dress in blue for the day in support of the anti-bullying message.Young ABA (YABA) is a recently established advisory board of nine Diana Anti-Bullying Award holders - one from each government region.This week is Anti-Bullying Week 2007, run by the Anti-Bullying Alliance (ABA).

  • Tatchell to celebrate 40 years of activism 2

    He was assaulted while taking part in a Pride demonstration in Moscow, and was detained by Russian police.

    12:40 PM — One of the best-known gay rights advocates in Britain will soon be celebrating his 40th year of human rights campaigning.Peter Tatchell began his first campaign in 1967 in his native Australia against the death penalty and opposition to conscription and the Australian and US war against the people of Vietnam."It is a great honour and privilege to have been part of the international human rights movement," said Mr Tatchell.

  • New gay HIV infections at highest rate ever 20

    In 2006, an estimated 31,100 men who have sex with men (MSM) were living with HIV in the UK.

    12:40 PM — The latest figures released today from the Health Protection Agency reveal that the number of gay and bisexual men diagnosed with HIV in the UK is at its highest rate since the start of the epidemic.2,700 gay and bisexual men were newly diagnosed last year, the highest number ever.Across the UK 1 in 20 gay and bisexual men are now living with HIV and estimates suggest this figure is as high as 1 in 10 in London.

  • 22nd November 2007

    Labour peer defends lesbian sister’s parental rights 20

    On Monday a peer was taken seriously ill in the House just after speaking in the debate on the Human Fertilisation and Embryology bill.

    5:05 PM — The House of Lords continued its debate on the second reading of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology bill yesterday.During the debate a leading Labour peer revealed that his sister is a lesbian who had a child with her partner.Conservative elected hereditary peer Lord Elton said it was "extraordinary" to remove the need for a father. "It seems to me grotesque and unpleasant," he said.

  • Army sergeant denies sending texts to lesbian soldier 3

    The staff sergeant described how Miss Fletcher had often been late for duties and insubordinate towards him.

    4:10 PM — An employment tribunal has heard an Army sergeant deny sending texts to a lesbian soldier claiming he could "convert" her.Lance Corporal Kerry Fletcher, 31, claims she was picked on because of her sexuality and that the staff sergeant sent her text messages indicating he wanted to have sex with her when she was working at an army stables in North Yorkshire.The sergeant, who cannot be named for legal reasons, has maintained his innocence.

  • Police warn child about homophobic abuse 1

    PC Helen Seymour, Hate Crime Officer for Stroud, Stonehouse and Dursley, said her force take incidence of hate crime “very seriously.“

    4:00 PM — An 11 year old boy in Gloucestershire has been given a final warning from police for using homophobic language.The child shouted three times towards his 49-year-old victim as he walked down the street in Dursley.PC Helen Seymour, Hate Crime Officer for Stroud, Stonehouse and Dursley, said her force take incidence of hate crime "very seriously."

  • EastEnders actress wins damages over lesbian story

    Ms Janus joined the EastEnders cast in May.  photo: BBC Publicity

    12:30 PM — Actress Samantha Janus has won substantial damages from a claim that she had engaged in a "three hour drug fueled lesbian orgy."She sued the Sunday Sport after story entitled "Sam's sex and drugs shame" hit newsstands on 22 July this year.Two topless photos of Janus, taken by her ex boyfriend Doug Harwood, accompanied the article.

  • Warning over poppers link to HIV infection 1

    The re-emergence of syphilis and chlamydia indicate that the sexual health of gay men is a cause for concern.

    12:03 PM — Poppers usage could increase a gay mans susceptibility to HIV transmission during unprotected sex, a new UK study has found.The use of the drug facilitates longer and rougher sex, as well as increasing the body's uptake of fluids.The research, published in the online edition of Sexually Transmitted Infections, shows gay men are still the highest risk group in terms of UK HIV infection.

  • 21st November 2007

    Catholic MPs to vote for same-sex parent rights 20

    Roman Catholic MPs such as cabinet minister Ruth Kelly could face a dilemma if asked to defy the church and vote in favour of the bill.

    5:10 PM — Labour MPs will not be given a free vote on the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill, it has emerged.Traditionally members are given a free vote on issues deemed to be a matter of conscience.However, growing backbench unease about the proposals has led government sources to confirm that the bill will be subject to a three-line whip, meaning all Labour MPs must vote in favour of it.

  • Gay hate preacher’s BBC blasphemy case 7

    Mr Green was arrested last year for handing out leaflets at Cardiff Mardi Gras which included quotes saying homosexuality is wrong.

    4:45 PM — An evangelical minister who came to prominence for his protests at gay Pride events has gone to the High Court in an attempt to bring a private prosecution for blasphemy against the director general of the BBC.Reverend Stephen Green's actions relate to the screening of the acclaimed production Jerry Springer - The Opera on BBC2 in 2005.An attempt to bring a private prosecution in January was dismissed by a district court.

  • Ministers lend support to LGBT History Month 5

    The minister for equality Barbara Follett will speak at the event.

    3:45 PM — Senior politicians, broadcasters, legal professionals, teachers and gay rights advocates will gather in central London later next week to raise awareness of next year's LGBT History Month.The pre-launch event will be hosted by the London Crown Prosecution Service, the London Criminal Justice Board and Channel 4 at the Royal Courts of Justice.The fourth Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans (LGBT) History Month just over three months away.

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