19th November 2007
Former Tory leader attacks lesbian parents 35
1:15 PM — A leading member of the Conservative party has launched a full-frontal attack on the rights of lesbian and gay couples to equal parenting rights.The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill is due before the House of Lords today.It contains new rules that will allow the gay and lesbian couples to become the legal parents of a child conceived through donated sperm, eggs or embryos.
C4 cleared over Muslim gay-hate documentary 9
12:35 PM — The broadcasting watchdog has cleared Channel 4 over a documentary broadcast in January exposing homophobic preaching in UK mosques.The Dispatches programme portrayed a Birmingham mosque as a haven for extreme views.Today Ofcom ruled that Undercover Mosque had not misled viewers or offended Muslims. Undercover footage showed preacher Abu Usamah at Green Lane Mosque in Birmingham calling for gay people to be executed.
Stephen Fry’s panto special to raise HIV funds
12:15 PM — Dame Judi Dench, Elaine Page and Petula Clark are among the stars taking part in a special fund-raising performance of a panto classic next month.Theatrecares, a charity working to support those living with HIV AIDS within the arts, has announced a special gala performance of Stephen Fry's new Cinderella at the Old Vic Theatre on Friday 7th December.This special evening will be hosted by Theatrecares friend and Patron John Barrowman.
Mayoral candidate reveals first gay experience
11:51 AM — The recently-selected Lib Dem candidate for Mayor of London will divulge details of his first gay sexual encounter in his memoirs.Brian Paddick's autobiography Line of Fire is not due for publication until April 2008, just weeks before the election.Already there is widespread speculation about the contents of the book, which will almost certainly contain heavy criticism of London's Metropolitan Police commissioner Sir Ian Blair.
Murphy-O’Connor: plans for easier lesbian IVF “profoundly wrong” 4
12:01 AM — The Government's plans to allow lesbian couples to use IVF to bring up children without any lasting involvement from the father have come under fire from politicians and religious leaders.The leader of Britain's Catholic Church, Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor, criticised the planned Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill , saying that it is "profoundly wrong" to allow lesbian couples to conceive children in this way.
18th November 2007
Tutu hits out at Church of England over treatment of gays 6
1:00 AM — Archbishop Desmond Tutu has criticised the Anglican church for being "obsessed" with homosexuality, in a BBC radio interview to be broadcast on Tuesday. He said that if he believed that God was homophobic, he wouldn't be a Christian.The Nobel Peace Prize winner, said he was ashamed of his church because of its treatment of gays. He said that Rowan Williams has not demonstrated the attributes of a "welcoming God" to homosexuals.
16th November 2007
Minister launches anti-bullying week
12:45 PM — The Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families Ed Balls launched Anti-Bullying Week 2007 yesterday at the Victoria Apollo Theatre, home of WICKED the musical.Anti-Bullying Week 2007, from 19th to 23rd November, is run by the Anti-Bullying Alliance (ABA), who this year are focusing on 'bullying in the community.'Gay equality organisation Stonewall and LGBT education group Schools Out are members of the ABA, which is funded by the Department for Children, Schools and Families.
Tribunal told of lesbian encounter in Army stables 2
12:00 PM — A young soldier told a tribunal yesterday how he saw two lesbian colleagues sharing a passionate kiss, one with her hand down the others trousers.Gunner Ashley Yeats said he felt 'embarrassed' after catching Lance Bombardier Kerry Fletcher, 31, and Corporal Louise Ashman, 29, in the army stables of 40 Regiment Royal Artillery in Topcliffe, North Yorkshire, where they were all working in early spring 2005.
Barrowman backs theatrical AIDS day collection 4
11:10 AM — Following on from a hugely successful collection in 2006, which raised a record-breaking £120,000, Theatrecares is soon to launch their 2007 World AIDS Week Theatre Bucket Collection Appeal, again fronted by stage and screen stars John Barrowman and Connie Fisher.Each year, the vast majority of West End theatres participate in the appeal, which is reliant on the goodwill and support of actors, theatre management, crew and producers.In 2006, the Lyceum alone (home to Disney's The Lion King) raised over £13,000.
15th November 2007
Italy gay protection law moves forward 1
3:25 PM — The justice committee of the lower house of the Italian parliament has approved the text of a new bill that will outlaw homophobic crime.The measure is part of a larger legislative package designed to tackle violence against women, children and old people and gender discrimination.Yesterday the Minister for Equal Opportunities, Barbara Pollastrini, said: "every year, there are more women dying from violence than from diseases or accidents."
Xmas cards and a single to raise funds for GMFA
2:55 PM — A gay men's health charity has come up with some novel fundraising schemes just in time for World AIDS Day and Christmas.Lee Thomas (a.k.a. 4th Child) is releasing a World AIDS Day single with sales that will benefit gay men across London.The single, Lovers Best Friends, will be available for download only and is released on November 26th 2007. Profits will be donated to the gay men's health charity GMFA.
Interview: Clegg sets out his leadership credentials
1:31 PM — Since winning Sheffield Hallam in the 2005 general election, Nick Clegg has made a major impression on Liberal Democrats in Parliament and across the country.Tipped as a future leader before he even entered Westminster, in the wake of Sir Menzies Campbell's resignation he finds himself standing sooner than was imagined.Age did it for Ming, and 40-year-old Clegg is the frontrunner in the contest to replace him. Like his opponent in the leadership race, Chris Huhne, he attended the private Westminster School.
Scotland hug-in protests target Stagecoach buses 22
11:25 AM — Gay rights activists and members of the Scottish Socialist party are to travel on buses in several Scottish cities today in protest at the treatment of a gay couple on a bus earlier this month.Same-sex couples will hold hug-ins on Stagecoach buses in Dundee, Glasgow and Edinburgh. In Aberdeenshire protestors will join the couple in recreating their journey.Steven Black, 16, and Mark Craig, 19, were threatened with ejection from a bus and then made to sit separately after a fellow passenger complained about their behaviour.
Comment: Evangelical has no place on equality commission 41
10:35 AM — Simon Barrow of Ekklesia has a silver tongue when it comes to making excuses for the disgraceful behaviour of some of his co-religionists.Now he comes out in defence of the Evangelical Alliance and its leader Joel Edwards, who has been appointed as a commissioner to the Equality and Human Rights Commission.Give him time, says Simon, let's see how he behaves. He might change. Well, I was one of those who objected to Joel Edwards' appointment and I did so after observing years of efforts by him and his organisation to retard gay rights.
14th November 2007
London Mayor candidates differ on incitement law 5
6:10 PM — The three main party candidates for Mayor of London have spoken to PinkNews.co.uk about a new law that would make incitement to hatred on the grounds of sexual orientation an offence.Ken Livingstone, who has been Mayor since 2000, said that many lesbian and gay people in London experience high levels of violence, abuse, threats and insults and welcomed the proposed legislation."The sort of thing that should fall under such legislation, for example, would be the hatred incited by the far right when they assert that all homosexuals are paedophiles," he said.
Gay poets London residence to become museum 1
5:30 PM — Two of France's most admired poets are to be honoured with a museum in north London dedicated to poetry.Arthur Rimbaud and his lover Paul Verlaine fled Paris for London in 1872 amid controversy about their love affair.The 28-year-old Verlaine had abandoned his wife and child to elope with the 17-year-old Rimbaud. The couple had a short-lived relationship and stayed in London for less than a year.
Comment: Keep the EHRC door open to promote change 39
4:00 PM — Reactions to the news that the Rev Joel Edwards, general director of the Evangelical Alliance, had been appointed to serve as one of the commissioners on the new Equalities and Human Rights Commission (EHRC), were swift and predictable.There was acknowledgement but little immediate comment in the religious press (many there are nervous about the news, for the opposite reason to PinkNews.co.uk readers) and annoyance and incomprehension in LGBT communities and among civil rights and secular activists.
Stonewall criticises BBC’s gay representation
2:55 PM — The chief executive of the UK's leading gay equality organisation has told a diversity conference that gay and lesbian people are "massively underserved" by the BBC.Ben Summerskill said that £200m of the BBC's £3bn licence fee is paid by gay citizens, who were not getting proper representation on screen.Recent research by Stonewall found that gay people and their lives are five times more likely to be portrayed in negative terms on the BBC.
EXCLUSIVE: Clegg backs homophobic incitement law 1
1:25 PM — A candidate for the leadership of the Liberal Democrat party has told PinkNews.co.uk that he is "absolutely in favour" of a proposed new law to make incitement to hatred on the grounds of sexual orientation an offence.Nick Clegg, who is the party's home affairs spokesperson, dismissed concerns from some gay commentators that the law is unnecessary, saying there is a "real problem of overt homophobic incitement to violence."The party's 2005 manifesto promised legislation to tackle this issue.
13th November 2007
Lesbian solider denies sexual relationship with female colleague 3
5:22 PM — A supposed rendezvous between two lesbian soldiers in an Army stable was just a friendly cuddle, a tribunal heard yesterday.A male colleague had said that Sergeant Louise Ashman and Lance Bombardier Kerry Fletcher were engaged in a romantic encounter in the barn after one sent the other a text message saying "I feel randy", the Daily Mail has reported.But yesterday Miss Ashman insisted she was only comforting her colleague.