29th January 2007
Report reveals extent of anti-gay taunts in schools
12:13 PM — Research by the National Union of Teachers has revealed that the vast majority of their members hear the word gay used pejoratively on a regular basis.Many felt that sexist and homophobic language was institutionally tolerated.The study also revealed the high levels of sexist language being used in schools and that many female teachers are sexually harassed by pupils.
Tory leader rejects Catholic adoption exemption
9:22 AM — David Cameron has said there can be no opt-out for Roman Catholic-run adoption agencies from the Sexual Orientation Regulations.The Conservative party leader said there should be an adjustment period of three to four years for adoption agencies to allow them to adjust to the new rules, which outlaw discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation when accessing goods and services.
26th January 2007
Lib Dem MP calls for adoption opt-out 8
6:07 PM — A Roman Catholic Liberal Democrat MP has tabled an Early Day Motion in the House of Commons calling on the government to exclude Catholic adoption agencies from the Equality Act.Richard Younger-Ross' motion has been signed by only six other MPs.The Liberal Democrats have been very critical of the proposed opt-outs for Catholic adoption agencies.
Jewish adoption agency open to gays 3
4:47 PM — The only registered Jewish adoption and fostering agency in England has told PinkNews.co.uk that they are not seeking an exemption from the Sexual Orientation Regulations.Norma Brier, who is chief executive of the agency, Norwood, confirmed that they will comply with the regulations, which are designed to protect gay lesbian and bisexual people from discrimination when accessing goods and services.
Ruth resignation rumours rubbished 3
2:10 PM — A spokesman for Communities Secretary Ruth Kelly has dismissed rumours that she on the brink of resigning from the Cabinet.Ms Kelly has been the focus of much of the criticism the goverment has faced after it was revealed that they are considering granting exemptions to anti-discrimination legislation to Roman Catholic adoption agencies.
Tories comment on adoption row 3
1:44 PM — PinkNews.co.uk exclusive Eleanor Laing, The Conservative shadow minister for Women and Equality, has called on the government to find a solution to the row over exemptions from equality legislation for Roman Catholic adoption agencies.Ms Laing, the MP for Epping Forest, also criticised those who have attacked Ruth Kelly for her religious beliefs.
Scottish prelate pledges to defy the law 3
1:21 PM — The Archbishop of Glasgow has said that Catholic adoption agencies in Scotland will continue to turn away gay couples in defiance of the Equality Act.Archbishop Conti, who has been consistently hostile towards gay rights, has taken the hardline stance as the row over gay adoption looks set to become a major issue in the upcoming elections for the Scottish Parliament.
Gay rapper highlights school bullying 4
12:02 PM — British rapper QBoy is to present a schools programme for Channel 4 in which he talks to children who have come out while still at school. Coming Out To Class is one of a series of programmes in the channel's Gay Week which starts on February 26th.QBoy told PinkNews.co.uk, "I am happy that this programme has been made as I hope it will shed light on a much ignored issue."
Tribunal told gay parents are bad for kids 2
11:12 AM — An employment tribunal in Yorkshire has heard evidence from an American academic who claims that placing children with same-sex couples damages them.Former magistrate Andrew McClintock is claiming the Constitutional Affairs department were acting unlawfully by not allowing him to opt out of ruling on cases where gay and lesbians were seeking to adopt children.
Noel Edmonds plays gay 2
10:01 AM — Fans of the television comedy show Little Britain are in for a treat tonight as a familiar face will step into the role of "only gay in the village" Daffyd.TV veteran Noel Edmonds will don the tight lycra and give us his unique take on the much-quoted character this evening when he appears as a guest on the Channel 4 show The Friday Night Project.
25th January 2007
Greens attack Catholic adoption “opt-out” in Scotland 1
5:47 PM — The Scottish Green Party has spoken out against Labour and the Scottish National Party over rumours of an opt-out for Catholic adoption agencies in the country.On the day that the London press is reporting a defeat for the Roman Catholic Church in England and Wales, the two largest parties in Scotland appear to be supporting the denial of gay and lesbian couples in Scotland to equal treatment by Catholic adoption agencies.
John Reid says gay rights a matter of principle 1
5:20 PM — The Home Secretary has told a Westminster audience that the fundamental principle of equality must not be undermined.Reid, a Roman Catholic, is considered one of the only members of the Cabinet who could mount a serious challenge to Gordon Brown in the contest for Labour party leader, due to take place after Tony Blair leaves office later this year.
COMMENT: Archbishops suffer from flawed reasoning 6
3:54 PM — The Prime Minister announced today that, despite press reports to the contrary, he is still thinking about whether or not to grant Roman Catholic adoption agencies an exemption from legislation to protect gay people from discrimination.Perhaps he, like commentator Nicolas Chinardet, is trying to unravel the flawed logic of the senior churchmen who have been writing to him this week.
Lawyers launch free employment advice DVD 2
3:38 PM — The Law Centres Federation has launched a free DVD that informs lesbian, gay and bisexual people about their employment rights. Pride Not Prejudice focuses on discrimination and harassment at work on the grounds of sexual orientation.It explains the Employment Equality (Sexual Orientation) regulations which were introduced in December 2003 and describes how they protect people in the workplace.
Exhibition focuses on gays in the press
3:20 PM — The London Borough of Barnet will celebrate LGBT History Month next week with an exhibition at the Church Farmhouse Museum in Hendon.1967 and All That will showcase press items about gay and lesbian issues from the past forty years.The Lesbian and Gay Newsmedia Archives has loaned its extensive collection for the exhibition.
PM – no final decision made about gay adoption
1:43 PM — An official statement from Downing St says that a final decision has not been made on whether or not Roman Catholic adoption agencies will be allowed to refuse to consider gay or lesbian couples as potential parents.It has been widely reported this morning that the Prime Minister has caved in to pressure from many Labour MPs and Cabinet ministers who argue that granting exemptions to any group betrays the spirit of anti-discrimination legislation.
Tory website abuzz with opinions on gay adoption
12:15 PM — While Conservative MPs have been silent on the issue of gay adoption, grassroots members have made their feelings clear on Tory discussion boards.Despite the positive approach towards LGBT people favoured by party leader David Cameron, comments posted on a Tory supporters website demonstrate that many activists disagree with him.Conservativehome.com contains some lively debate on the gay adoption row.
Gay father praises Catholic agencies and defends Ruth Kelly 57
11:14 AM — PinkNews.co.uk exclusive A gay Anglican priest who has fostered a child for 15 years has defended the staff of Catholic adoption agencies and criticised the way in which Communities Secretary Ruth Kelly has been pilloried for her religious beliefs.Fr Martin Reynolds, who is a prominent member of the Lesbian and Gay Christian Movement, said that everything must be done to preserve the "outstanding work" that social workers and other staff in Catholic agencies do to help vulnerable children.
Catholic adoption opt-out ruled out 1
10:01 AM — Adoption agencies run by the Roman Catholic Church will have to consider gay couples as potential parents or close down, it has emerged.After meeting with MPs and the Cabinet yesterday, Prime Minister Tony Blair has bowed to strong criticism from his own party over a suggested exemption from the Sexual Orientation Regulations for Catholic providers of adoption services.
24th January 2007
No 10 website hosts anti gay-rights petition 1
5:24 PM — Gay rights activists have expressed concern that one of the most popular petitions on the Prime Minister's official website is anti-gay.The website hosts a facility for members of the public to create a petition topic and invite others to sign up.One such petition calling on the government to rescind the Sexual Orientation Regulations has attracted more than 8,000 signatures.