3rd January 2008
Interview: David Heath on incitement to homophobic hatred 5
10:40 AM — As Lib Dem spokesperson on Justice, David Heath is a comforting contrast to the Cleggs and Huhnes of the party.Big, bearded, thoughtful yet jocular, the 53-year-old is a substantial politician in more ways than one, and in his present role he shadows one of the remaining big beasts of the Labour party, Jack Straw.Heath is very much of his constituency, Somerton and Frome. He was born in the Mendip Hills of Somerset and was leader of the county's council at the age of 31.
2nd January 2008
Police chief’s drugs stance attacked by MP 1
4:40 PM — Labour MP Chris Bryant has attacked as "dangerous" views expressed by North Wales Police chief constable Richard Brunstrom that ecstasy is safer than tobacco, alcohol and aspirin.Mr Brunstrom told BBC Radio 4's Today programme that the scare mongering around ecstasy was not borne out by fact."If you look at the government's own research you will find that ecstasy by comparison to many other substances, legal and illegal, is a comparatively safe substance," he said.
Minister to attend Schools OUT conference 8
1:45 PM — Kevin Brennan, a junior minister at the Department for Children, Schools and Families, will be one of the keynote speakers at an LGBT education event next month.The Schools OUT annual conference will be held on February 2nd in the Drill Hall in central London.Founded in 1974, Schools OUT Works towards equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans people in education.
PinkNews.co.uk list highlights lack of female representation 55
11:50 AM — A snapshot of gay, lesbian, bisexual and trans people in British politics has revealed that women are seriously under-represented.Just one female, the Labour MP and minister Angela Eagle, made it into the top 10, with another four in the top 50.Margot James, the Conservative prospective parliamentary candidate for Stourbridge and party vice-chair, is at number 17, while Margaret Smith, the Liberal Democrat MSP for Edinburgh West, is at number 32.
Stonewall welcomes honours for gay rights activists 1
11:20 AM — The former director of Stonewall has been recognised in the Queen's New Year's Honours List.Angela Mason, who headed the gay equality organisation from 1993 to 2003, becomes a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE). She was previously awarded the OBE.Earlier this year she retired as head of the government's Women and Equality Unit. She now works as an adviser to the Improvement and Development Agency.
English Cardinal attacks gay people in New Year message 21
10:20 AM — The leader of the Roman Catholic church in England and Wales has linked gay people to drug and alcohol abuse and claimed that parents want their children to be taught that marriage is superior to all other "lifestyles."Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor's message, which was read out at church services across the Diocese of Westminster, marks the Feast of the Holy Family.It has been interpreted as an attack on the government's stance on equality for gay people.
1st January 2008
“Murder squad” make arrest in connection with Kevin Greening’s death 2
4:00 AM — Police from the Specialist Crime Directorate, dubbed by some the "murder squad" have arrested a man in connection with the death of the gay radio DJ Kevin Greening.The unamed man in his 50s was arrested at the address that Greening's body was found on Saturday evening. Police say he was questioned under suspicion of possession with intent to supply Class A drugs and has been bailed pending further investigation.
31st December 2007
Paddick launches personal attack on London rival 1
5:50 PM — The Liberal Democrat candidate for Mayor of London has branded his Tory opponent a "clown" and questioned his suitability for the job.Londoners will vote for their next Mayor on May 1st. Henley MP Boris Johnson is the Conservative candidate.Brian Paddick, formerly the most senior out gay policeman in the UK, is the Lib Dem candidate. Incumbent Ken Livingstone is running again for the Labour party.
‘Jesus is a fag’ controversy raised in House of Commons 7
4:40 PM — The Northern Ireland Parades Commission is to meet with the organisers of Belfast Pride over a placard displayed at this year's event that outraged Christians.Democratic Unionist MP Nigel Dodds raised the issue in the Commons earlier this month.The Minister of State for Northern Ireland, Paul Goggins, told Mr Dodds that the Parades Commission has written to Pride organisers and asked for a meeting "to discuss the matter further."
Gay man’s killer to be sentenced
4:15 PM — A 42-year-old man who pleaded guilty to the manslaughter of the managing director of a research consultancy specialising in gay and lesbian issues will be sentenced next week.Tony Hoare, 49, was attacked in September as he walked his two Jack Russell dogs in Charlton Park, south east London.He was found unconscious and died shortly after being taken to hospital.
LGBT fire conference attacked by councillor 1
2:30 PM — A local Bristol politician has generated headlines by attacking a highly-successful conference held in the city by the fire authority earlier this year.Councillor Albert Murphy, known as 'Spud,' branded October's Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals and Transgender Equality in the Fire Service - An Absolute Taboo? event a waste of money.The chair of Avon Fire Authority, who hosted the event, has defended the conference and branded the councillor ignorant.
Service with gay clergy may have broken canon law
12:01 AM — The Archbishop of Canterbury's recent communion with lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered (LGBT) clergy was so secret that the Bishop of London did not even know about it, despite it being held within his diocese, The Times claims.The communion took place on the 29th November 2007 with 80 LGBT priests, monks and nuns by the Clergy Consultation support group.Canon law states that only a bishop can authorise services that take place in his diocese.
30th December 2007
Gay DJ Kevin Greening dies 2
9:40 PM — The gay former BBC Radio 1 DJ Kevin Greening has died, his agent said tonight.The 44 year old died in his sleep last night, although no details relating to the cause of death have been made public.Greening co-presented Zoe Ball's breakfast show on Radio 1 between 1997 and 1998. He later worked on Radio 5 Live and Smooth Radio.
29th December 2007
Sir Ian McKellen and Kylie on Queen’s New Year honours list
11:30 AM — Sir Ian McKellen, the actor and founding member of the gay rights charity, Stonewall has been made a Companion of Honour.Sir Ian joins the exclusive order of the 65 leading figures in the arts, science and industry, founded by George V. He was recognised for services to drama and to equality.The Lord of the Rings star said: "I am honoured to join an Order which includes such distinguished practitioners in the arts."
28th December 2007
Legal drug that turns into GHB on rise in gay club scene
12:01 AM — The Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs may recommend reclassifying gamma butyrlactone (GBL) to a class-C drug after a rise in use in the club scene.Unlike, gamma hydroxybutyrate, (GHB), which is illegal, GBL is perfectly legal and turns into GHB once in the blood stream. Both drugs are increasingly used in the gay club scene but while GHB is sold by drug dealers, illegally, GBL is found in products such as nail varnish remover.
27th December 2007
Profile: The most powerful gay man in British politics 55
12:01 AM — Spencer Livermore is one of the least-recognised names on the PinkNews.co.uk Top 50, but he wields a level of influence most politicians could only dream of.As Director of Political Strategy at Number 10, he is planning the next election and the direction of the government and the Labour party next week, next month and next year.
Brown aide named most powerful gay person in Britain 55
12:01 AM — PinkNews.co.uk, Europe's largest gay news publication, has published its list of the fifty most powerful openly LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered) people in British politics.Gordon Brown's Director of Political Strategy, Spencer Livermore tops a list that contains 17 Labour party members, 11 Conservatives, seven Liberal Democrats, three greens and one Plaid Cymru. The list contains five senior civil servants and special advisers.
The 50 most powerful LGBT people in British politics 59
12:01 AM — As we look forward to another year, we cannot help but ponder the fact that if Gordon Brown had called an autumn election we could have been hearing a very different Queen's Speech last month.But if the Conservatives or even the Liberal Democrats had won the election, there would be gay people at the heart of government.The purpose of this PinkNews.co.uk Top 50 list is to demonstrate the presence of gay and lesbian people at the highest levels of British politics.
26th December 2007
David Beckham loves being a gay icon
12:30 AM — Former England captain, David Beckham has confessed that his wife, Victoria, likes to dress him and that he loves being a gay icon.The 32-year-old told BBC Radio 2's Lines of Enquiry: "I'm very honoured to have the tag of gay icon...Maybe it's things like (the fact) I like to look after myself, I like to look smart and presentable most of the time."He also said: "Without a doubt Victoria has a huge part in the way I look these days."
23rd December 2007
Simon Hughes says Blair conversion isn’t news
12:01 AM — The openly bisexual, Christian, Liberal Democrat MP, Simon Hughes has criticised the media for overstating the importance of the conversion of former prime minister Tony Blair to Catholicism.Mr Hughes said: "In the 21st century the news that a former prime minister has moved from one branch of the church to another should not rate major headlines...If Tony Blair had changed from Christianity to Buddhism, Islam or Judaism it would be much more significant."