13th March 2008
Brighton and Manchester Pride want you
11:50 AM — Two major gay celebrations in England are inviting people to get involved.Pride in Brighton and Hove is holding an open meeting for anyone who is interested in joining the parade, applying for a grant or having a stall at this summer's event.Manchester Pride, celebrating its 18th year, is urging people who wish to take part in 2008 to submit applications as soon as possible.
12th March 2008
Tory MP hostile to gay rights is sacked from party 3
5:50 PM — A Conservative MP who has attempted to fight gay rights laws is at the centre of a bizarre series of events in the Commons today.Bob Spink has had the whip withdrawn after threatening the Chief Whip with resignation. He accused the party of not doing enough to stop him from being deselected from his Castle Point seat.Since entering the Commons in 1992 Mr Spink has consistently opposed gay rights.
G-A-Y venue cannot be saved says Ken
4:30 PM — A report from the Mayor of London released today has confirmed that London venue The Astoria will close as part of a redevelopment of the Tottenham Court Road area.The Astoria is best known as a live music venue and the home of popular club night G-A-Y.Despite protests from famous musicians and petitions signed by tens of thousands of people, the building will be pulled down as part of the construction of the new Crossrail project.
US ban on HIV+ travellers challenged by MEPs and Senators 6
3:40 PM — The Lib Dems are calling on EU members states to raise the current American policy on HIV+ visitors to the United States at tomorrow's meeting of justice and security ministers.On Friday the same issue will be raised in the US Senate.The Committee on Foreign Relations is due to discuss the ban after Senators John Kerry and Republican Gordon Smith added a provision to repeal the ban to Senate legislation to reauthorising PEPFAR, the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief.
Gay hate crime bill moves forward in Lords 100
3:02 PM — An amendment to the Criminal Justice and Immigration Bill that would make it an offence to link homosexuality to paedophilia was discussed in the House of Lords last week.The bill seeks to create a new offence of incitement to hatred on the grounds of sexual orientation.Liberal Democrat peer Lord Thomas of Gresford told the House: "We are concerned about the suggestion very frequently made by the British National Party and others that homosexuality and paedophilia are directly connected and that a person who is homosexual has a propensity to be a paedophile."
Candidates looking forward to gay hustings 1
3:01 PM — Two men vying to become the next Mayor of London have said they are looking forward to the Stonewall hustings event next month.The hustings, on Saturday 19th April, will give the capital's gay and lesbian community an opportunity to question the candidates ahead of polling day on May 1st.PinkNews.co.uk is proud to be the media partner for the Stonewall hustings, which will be held at the BFI Southbank.
Darling hits bars and cars in first budget
2:30 PM — The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Alistair Darling delivered his budget earlier today.Among other measures, he announced an increase in duty on alcohol and high polluting cars.Like the rest of the drinking industry, the gay scene will be hit by a six per cent increase in alcohol tax with a two percent rise each year until 2012.
Little Britain and Tracey Emin raise funds for THT 1
12:02 PM — The Lighthouse Gala Auction raised more than £200,000 for HIV and sexual health charity Terrence Higgins Trust on Monday night.A walk on part in Little Britain USA raised £9,000 and Tracey Emin's neon 'I promise to love you' raised £26,000.Tony Blair's last party conference speech as Prime Minister made £4,200.Now in its 12th year the auction, sponsored by Barclays, was attended by high profile supporters.
EU criticised over ‘pass the parcel’ asylum policy 21
11:44 AM — A London MEP has called for an end to the "shameful shuffling" of gay and other asylum-seekers between EU member states.Tomorrow the European Parliament will vote on an emergency resolution calling for an Iranian teenager currently in Holland not to be sent back to the UK.19-year-old Mehdi Kazemi had unsuccessfully applied for asylum in the United Kingdom, following the execution of his partner by Iranian authorities after being found guilty of sodomy.
11th March 2008
Gay peer speaks out against deportations to Iran 21
6:10 PM — A gay member of the House of Lords has demanded the government take action to stop a gay teenager being deported back to Iran where he could face the death penalty.Today it was revealed that 19-year-old Mehdi Kazemi, who was refused asylum in Britain and fled to Holland, will be deported back to the UK.He had unsuccessfully applied for asylum in the United Kingdom following the execution of his partner by Iranian authorities after being found guilty of sodomy.
Manchester police lose chief constable 1
5:45 PM — A police chief known for being gay friendly has died. As Chief Constable of Greater Manchester police, Mike Todd was in charge of the service when they joined the Stonewall Diversity Champions scheme.Manchester, the second-largest police force in the UK, was last year was placed joint 43rd on the list of top 100 employers for gay people in the Stonewall Work Equality Index.The city is home to one of the largest gay scenes in England.
Iranian gay teen loses appeal against deportation to the UK 22
4:55 PM — A 19-year-old gay man from Iran who was refused asylum in Britain and fled to Holland will be deported back to the UK, according to gay rights activists connected with his case.Mehdi Kazemi had unsuccessfully applied for asylum in the United Kingdom following the execution of his partner by Iranian authorities after being found guilty of sodomy.He faces possible execution by stoning if he returns to Iran. Activists have pledged to take his case the EU courts.
Tribunal hearing over civil partnerships on forms 11
3:45 PM — An employment tribunal has ruled that a Catholic couple from Scotland can pursue their claim of sexual and religious discrimination against Strathclyde Police over its definition of the term 'marital status.'Devout Catholics Lucille and Frank McQuade claim that Scotland's largest police force is guilty of religious discrimination after altering its civilian employee records to change their status from "married" to "married/civil partnership."Mr McQuade, 49, a communications officer with the force, said that no slur was intended on the gay community.
JK Rowling: Homophobia is a fear of people loving 7
3:15 PM — The author of the best-selling Harry Potter novels has given a wide-ranging interview to a student newspaper in which she defends her gay character Albus Dumbledore.JK Rowling also spoke out against fundamentalist Christians in the United States who are trying to ban her work.Speaking to Edinburgh University's Student newspaper Rowling, whose successful series of novels have made her the richest women in Britain, defended her decision to out Dumbledore last year.
Mehdi’s deportation to be raised in Euro Parliament 21
12:30 PM — MEP Michael Cashman has said he will raise the case of Mehdi Kazemi in the European Parliament in Strasbourg this week.The 19-year-old Iranian is currently being held in Holland and is fighting legal moves to return him to the UK, where he is likely to face deportation to his homeland.He had unsuccessfully applied for asylum in the United Kingdom following the execution of his partner by Iranian authorities after being found guilty of sodomy.
Gay hate preacher attacks Steps star 10
12:20 PM — The controversial fundamentalist Christian Stephen Green has compared Steps singer H to mass murderer Jeffrey Dahmer.Green, who is notorious for his protests at gay Pride events, was taking part in BBC Wales current affairs programme, Week In, Week Out. While being interviewed by H, also known as Ian Watkins, Green called him vile and said he would pray for him.
Lesbian sex guide launched in Manchester 1
11:59 AM — One of the UK's leading gay charities will be supplying free lube and a safer sex leaflet to women in Manchester.The Lesbian and Gay Foundation (LGF) has also launched Beating About The Bush, a 32-page sex guide and lesbian and bisexual women's safer sex leaflet.LGF is a health-based community charity based in Manchester working to "end homophobia and empower people."
I am not gay says Welsh Olympian
11:45 AM — Former Olympic athlete Colin Jackson has denied he is gay, but said he does not mind what people say about him.Jackson, 41, told The Voice newspaper that persistent rumours about his sexuality are "strange and bizarre."The former hurdler appeared on BBC show Strictly Come Dancing in 2005 and 2006.He has just released a book, Life's New Hurdles. He won a silver medal in the 100m Hurdles at the 1988 Seoul Olympics.
New London route for 10K Crusaid walk
11:15 AM — Crusaid's Walk for Life has announced a new and improved route for this years event.The sponsored walk, which last year raised £375,000, supports poor and marginalised people affected by HIV and AIDS in the UK and Africa.Europe's largest fundraising walk for HIV kicks off at the Event Village, based at Potters Fields Park, on the 1st June. The new 10 kilometre route will snake through London.
10th March 2008
Green candidate will attend Stonewall hustings 1
6:01 PM — Sian Berry has been confirmed as the fourth candidate for Mayor of London appearing at a hustings event organised by gay equality organisation Stonewall.The Green candidate will appear alongside incumbent Mayor Ken Livingstone, Tory candidate Boris Johnson and Lib Dem's Brian Paddick at the event at BFI Southbank on Saturday 19th April.The Stonewall hustings will be the last before Londoners go to the polls on May 1st. Ms Berry, 33, is the youngest candidate in the race.