31st March 2008
Cameron backs Boris at launch of London campaign
1:30 PM — Conservative leader David Cameron has publicly backed the party's candidate for Mayor of London as officially launched his campaign this morning.He said Boris Johnson would be a "brilliant" mayor, claimed that "London's real problem is a lack of leadership" and said incumbent Mayor and Labour candidate Ken Livingstone had lost touch with the voters.Londoners go to the polls on May 1st to elect a Mayor and the 25-member London Assembly.
No complaints over Bounty Killer concert says Met 4
10:40 AM — The Metropolitan police have responded to criticism that it let a homoophobic singer perform in London.In a statement to PinkNews.co.uk, a spokeswoman said that meetings have been held between police, the venue's management and lesbian and gay groups to discuss this issue."It has been agreed that the artist would not perform songs that contain what could be considered to be homophobic lyrics," she said.
Northern Ireland gay rights group welcome bill of rights
10:20 AM — The Coalition on Sexual Orientation (CoSO) has welcomed the handover of the final Recommendations of the Bill of Rights Forum to the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission.The group said that the Yogyakarta Principles were used to inform the drafing of the bill.The principles were adopted by a meeting of experts in international law in Yogyakarta, Indonesia in 2006.
29th March 2008
Coronation Street adds gay character as Emmerdale axes two 1
2:30 PM — Coronation Street is to become the latest British soap opera to add a gay character, following EastEnders which is about to air a bisexual storyline. But fellow ITV drama Emmerdale will lose two gay characters.The popular ITV drama will soon feature Michael Byrne playing Ted Paige, the long lost gay father to long suffering character Gail Platt.
28th March 2008
Met Police criticised for allowing gay hate concert 4
5:30 PM — The Metropolitan Police have allowed a concert by artist Bounty Killer to go ahead, despite his lyrics inciting homophobic hatred and violence.The Jamaican reggae and dancehall DJ, born Rodney Basil Price, has already had two concerts cancelled in Bradford and Birmingham following protests by the gay human rights group Outrage!The Met have previously stated that artists would not be allowed to perform unless they sign the Reggae Compassionate Act (RCA).
Scottish campaign aims to stop deportation of gay teenager 5
12:50 PM — A campaign has been launched to save a teenager from Syria being deported to his homeland.Jojo Jako Yakob, 19, claims he will be executed if he is returned.He has been held at Polmont Young Offenders in Falkirk, Scotland for the last 12 months after being arrested for possessing a fake Belgian passport. His lawyers say an asylum application for his stay in the UK was mistakenly withdrawn.
‘Blogfather’ joins Paddick campaign as nominations close 5
12:45 PM — A second American political strategist has been appointed to Brian Paddick's campaign to become the first Lib Dem Mayor of London.Nominations for Mayor close today and the election will be held on May 1st.Jerome Armstrong, sometimes called the Blogfather, will be the campaign's web strategist. He was instrumental in US Presidential hopeful Howard Dean's grassroots campaign in 2004, regarded as the first major campaign to effectively use the internet to fundraise and win support.
INTERVIEW: Pi, mythology and the black male form
12:05 PM — A church is not the sort of place one would expect to find a celebration of male sexuality.But next month, St Pancras Church Crypt will play host to the 'Reverie' exhibition by London artist Charlie Pi, showcasing his interpretation of masculinity and sex.Known for his paintings of the black male form, the Deptford-based artist will premiere a selection of 50 new oil paintings of black male iconography displayed on unconventional canvases, such as old table tops and bread boards.
2,630 gay men diagnosed with HIV in 2007 4
11:30 AM — The Health Protection Agency has revealed that there were an estimated 6,840 new HIV diagnoses in the UK last year, more than a third of them gay men.It is the third successive year that new diagnoses among gay men have risen above 2,600, the highest levels since records began.Increased testing is likely to have contributed in part to these recent high numbers of HIV diagnoses. 2,630 gay men were diagnosed as HIV positive last year.
Homophobia claims rejected by police complaints body 16
11:10 AM — Sixteen allegations of homophobia made against the eight Devon and Cornwall police officers have been rejected by the Independent Police Complaints Commission.The complaints were made in 2004 and 2005 by Malcolm Lidbury, a local LGBT activist.He claimed he was "treated poorly" because of his sexuality and claimed that the Devon and Cornwall police have an "inherently homophobic" attitude.
27th March 2008
Gay ‘wedding’ planners to sponsor London Falcons
6:30 PM — London's newest gay-friendly football club is landed a major sponsor.Perfect Partnerships promote and specialise in co-ordinating civil partnerships, gay and lesbian stag and hen weekends, commitment ceremonies, gay honeymoons and overseas gay weddings.London Falcons Football Club, which fields teams in both 5-a-side and 11-as-side competitions, was founded less than two years ago but already boasts more than 100 members.They recently reached the final of the Yorkshire Terriers 5-a-side tournament.
Tributes paid to legendary gay DJ
3:02 PM — One of London's best known scene figures has died. DJ Tallulah had been a club DJ for forty years and was a regular at Heaven.Born in 1948 in Hamburg to English parents, he returned to live with his grandmother in Bexley three years later.He immersed himself in London's underground gay scene as a teenager, and by the early 1970s was established as a leading DJ. In 2007 he became the first inductee into the House Of Homosexual Culture's Hall Of Fame.
UK asylum system “not fit for purpose”
1:55 PM — A commission established to examine asylum policy and practice in the UK has concluded that it falls below the standards of a civilised nation.The 12-member Independent Asylum Commission's findings have been rejected by the Border and Immigration Agency, who claim they treat people with "care and compassion."The volume of people seeking asylum in the UK has fallen sharply and last year there were just over 23,000.
INTERVIEW: My short career as a gay Apprentice
12:45 PM — Last night the new series of The Apprentice started on BBC1.PinkNews.co.uk spoke to Sir Alan Sugar's first victim, 23 year old Nick De Lacey, about being booted out in the first week, his fear of chavs, and what how homophobia still exists in the workplace.You had to compete with over 20,000 people to get on to The Apprentice, how did it feel to get on the show?It felt really good!
Activist calls on people to ditch LGBT labels 3
12:20 PM — An ambitious campaign that aims to change the ways in which young people label themselves was launched last week in the form of a funky teen-oriented website.The website Ditch the Label (www.DitchtheLabel.com) was 'virtually' launched last Saturday night in a co-ordinated browsing of the new site, after being advertised via its original Myspace and the founder's personal Myspace sites.The founder of DitchtheLabel is 17-year old student, activist and part-time model, Liam Hackett.
26th March 2008
Paddick still favourite with gay voters 47
6:20 PM — The results of the second PinkNews.co.uk Mayor of London poll show that Lib Dem candidate Brian Paddick still leads among respondents.225 people who live in the London area took part in the poll. Mr Paddick, who until last year was the most senior out gay police officer in the UK, won 43.5%, or 98 of the first preference votes.He was followed by incumbent Mayor and Labour candidate Ken Livingstone, with 29.4% (66 votes). Tory candidate Boris Johnson won 12% (27 votes).
Fundraising auction lots range from Take That to Tate Modern
5:10 PM — Stonewall has launched its 2008 silent auction. All proceeds will go toward funding the gay equality organisation's charitable work, including the Education for All campaign, which aims to stamp out homophobic bullying in schools.Up for grabs is an array of rare and unusual prizes, including a chance to be a VIP guest to the stars of Strictly Come Dancing, an afternoon in the studio with BBC Radio 2's Paul Gambacinni and snowboarding lessons for four with the UK's number one snowboarder, Jo Chastney.
New England captain has learnt from past mistakes
4:40 PM — Rio Ferdinand's appointment as the new captain of the England football squad has been accompanied by a pledge from the player that he has learnt from past mistakes.The 29-year-old stirred controversy in 2006 during an interview with Radio 1 DJ Chris Moyles, in which he used the word "faggot."In 2003 he failed to appear to give a drugs test and was suspended from club and international games for eight months and fined £50,000.
INTERVIEW: How the internet changed gay society 2
3:01 PM — Channel 4 News technology correspondent Benjamin Cohen spoke to PinkNews.co.uk about what his report into how the gay dating site Gaydar changed the lives of the gay community.The report, one of a series of three marking ten years since the dot.com boom for More 4 News, will be broadcast this evening.Ownership and Control, to be broadcast tomorrow evening, compares the development of the internet to the division of land into enclosed, private areas, controlled by the few to control the masses.
Lords debates illustrate objections to gay equality 17
12:45 PM — The Prime Minister's decision to allow Labour MPs a free vote on three clauses of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill has surprised many Westminster watchers.The issues surrounding so-called 'saviour siblings,' human-animal embryos and the requirement for doctors to consider 'the need for a father' when deciding on whether to agree to carry out fertilisation or fertility treatments were all discussed at length in the Lords.Those debates should give us a flavour of the debate in the Commons, which is not expected until after the local council elections in May.