4th April 2008
Gay Iranian will be returned to UK as soon as today 6
11:20 AM — The Dutch Minister of Justice has told the country's parliament that she completely trusts the UK asylum system.Nebahat Albayrak, speaking in a debate about the plight of gay Iranian teenager Mehdi Kazemi, said she would not be asking the British counterparts for any assurances about his case.Boris van der Ham of the D66 party secured the debate with support from the Green party, the social democrats and other opposition parties.
3rd April 2008
Ian McKellen met Gordon Brown at gay ‘wedding’ 5
11:10 PM — Veteran gay rights advocate and award-winning actor Sir Ian McKellen has revealed that he has only met the Prime Minister once.Speaking at Stonewall's annual fundraising dinner at the Dorchester hotel in London, Sir Ian said the occasion was the celebration of the civil partnership ceremony of gay MEP Michael Cashman and his partner Paul Cottingham.He told the 540 guests that he had worked with Mr Brown, Tony Blair and John Major on gay rights.
Livingstone: I’m not gay but have 5 children with 3 women
6:45 PM — Ken Livingstone says he's not gay but has fathered five children with three different womenAs well as his two young children with his current partner Emma Beale, Mr Livingstone has three children from previous relationships. He fathered two daughters by one woman and a son with another. He told the BBC: "I don't talk about my private life; it seems like only yesterday the press was trying to imply I was gay."
Manchester gay foundation to auction off lesbians 1
5:33 PM — On Sunday 22nd June lesbian women of all ages, shapes and sizes will be auctioned off to raise funds for the Manchester-based Lesbian and Gay Foundation (LGF).The event will take place at the Vanilla bar in the city's gay village, and the foundation is seeking volunteers for the auction.Highest bidders from the evening will be sent on a date the following week with the lesbian of their choice.
PinkNews.co.uk editor to chair Stonewall hustings 1
5:10 PM — The editor of PinkNews.co.uk has said he is excited about the upcoming gay hustings with the Mayor of London candidates after it was announced he will chair the event.The incumbent Mayor and Labour candidate Ken Livingstone, Tory candidate Boris Johnson, the Lib Dem's Brian Paddick, Green party candidate Sian Berry and Lindsey German, the Respect - The Left List's candidate, have all confirmed their attendance.Hundreds of people have already contacted Stonewall to indicate they will be attending.
MPs amused by the Harriet and William show
4:40 PM — Secretary of State for Equality Harriet Harman made history yesterday when she became the first woman from the Labour party to answer Prime Minister's Questions.Ms Harman, who is responsible for gay rights issues, is also Leader of the House of Commons and Deputy Leader of the Labour party.Yesterday she was faced with former Tory leader William Hague, filling in for David Cameron. The Prime Minister was at a NATO summit in Bucharest.
COMMENT: Straight male machismo underpins all tyranny 3
1:30 PM — In a speech to the European Feminist Summit in London last month, activist and human rights advocate Peter Tatchell argued that by challenging traditional heterosexual masculinity, the queer emancipation movement can contribute to the liberation of all of humanity.Queer liberation is not a mere minority issue, nor purely a questionof personal lifestyle, civil rights or sexual freedom. It is, or canbe, socially transformative, with the potential to aid allemancipation struggles everywhere.Queers deviate from traditional masculinity. We reject the orthodoxmodel of what it is to be a man.
Booze ban on the tube is latest campaign pledge
1:05 PM — The leading contenders in the Mayor of London election have unveiled more eye-catching promises as the campaign moves into a more active stage.With four weeks to go, Tory candidate Boris Johnson has said that if elected he will ban the consumption of alcohol on the Tube to further crack down on anti-social behaviour and public disorder.Londoners go to the polls on May 1st to elect a Mayor and the 25-member London Assembly.
Bourne to debut Dorian Gray in Edinburgh 2
12:15 PM — One of Britain's most successful choreographers and the mastermind behind the all-male Swan Lake will premiere his latest production in August.Dorian Gray, is desrcibed as a "dark fairy tale that tells the story of an exceptionally alluring young man who makes a pact with the devil."Amongst London's beautiful people, Dorian Gray is the "It Boy" - an icon of beauty and truth in an increasingly ugly world."
Gay people not getting a fair deal says Paddick 2
10:01 AM — The Liberal Democrat candidate for Mayor of London has welcomed a report into perceived homophobia in British society.The Stonewall report is based on responses to a YouGov poll of more than 1,600 gay, lesbian and bisexual people across Britain.It found that respondents thought they would get worse treatment on the grounds of their sexuality in employment, political representation, housing, health, education, the police and the criminal justice system.
2nd April 2008
Arts Coucil finds sexual orientation controversy “ironic”
6:01 PM — Artists seeking funding for their work are being asked to reveal their sexuality.Any individual or group who apply for Arts Council funding will be asked whether they or any of their management committee are bisexual, gay, heterosexual or lesbian.The Arts Council is compiling the information so that they can report to the government the success rate of different applications.
Boris Johnson rejects BNP support 13
3:50 PM — The Conservative candidate for Mayor of London has slammed the British National Party after they told their supporters to choose him as their second preference candidate on May 1st."I utterly and unreservedly condemn the BNP and have no desire whatsoever to receive a single second preference vote from a BNP supporter," said Boris Johnson.Brian Paddick, the Liberal Democrat candidate for Mayor of London, told PinkNews.co.uk: "The BNP obviously recognise Boris' reputation for causing offence and creating division."
Gays embrace innovative car rental schemes
3:20 PM — Car Club schemes, a service popular among the gay community, have today been given support from Green Party candidate for Mayor of London Sian Berry.According to company City Car Club, a large amount of gay and lesbian drivers are signing up to the scheme, where members rent the use of a car by the hour.City Car Club has a fleet of more than 300 cars. It claims that once signed up to the scheme members cut down on unnecessary car journeys by as much as 35%.
Gay and lesbian groups awarded equality grants
12:25 PM — Ethnic minority and LGBT groups are among 286 organisations who have been awarded grants by the Equality and Human Rights Commission.The Equality Act 2006 allows the EHRC to give financial assistance to organisations concerned with promoting equality and diversity, good relations and human rights.Stonewall, the Bristol Lesbian Gay Bisexual Forum, the Consortium of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Voluntary and Community Organisations and The Lesbian and Gay Foundation are among the recipients.
Dutch MP questions deportation of gay teenager to UK 2
11:30 AM — A social-liberal MP in Holland has secured a debate in the country's parliament about Mehdi Kazemi, a gay Iranian teenager who is due for deportation back to the UK.Boris van der Ham of the D66 party is unhappy at the lack of assurances from the British government that Mr Kazemi will be allowed to remain in the UK.If he is returned to Iran he claims he faces execution.
1st April 2008
Start your engines for the gay rally across Europe 1
6:15 PM — A two thousand mile motor rally celebrating gay diversity will kick off in late June, the first race of its kind.The inaugural Rainbow Rampage takes place from June 28th to July 4th, is a twist on a traditional motor rally and more akin to a giant gay road trip.The rally downplays the racing aspect and is designed more to celebrate the cities that stretch along the race's route, some 2300 miles across Europe.
More gays need to put themselves forward says Tory 28
5:00 PM — Margot James, the Conservative candidate for the constituency of Stourbridge, has responded to a survey from Stonewall about perceived prejudice in the party against gay, lesbian and bisexuals who want to run for Parliament.Ms James said that in her experience as a lesbian, she has experienced no prejudice from party members, but quite a lot from the press."Gay people have to move on a bit," she told PinkNews.co.uk.
Online gay museum to be launched this month
2:35 PM — A series of public events on Monday 14th April will mark the launch of an online, interactive museum of gay, lesbian, bisexual and trans history.The Natural History Museum's Earth Gallery and Flett Theatre will host an unveiling of Proud Heritage, followed by a "no-holds barred and intimate interview" with gay rights activist Peter Tatchell, followed by questions from the audience.At the public event Proud Heritage will set out its future plans and unveil its first public phase.
LGBT Labour defend party’s record on gay candidates 28
1:50 PM — A group within the Labour party that pushes for equality for lesbian, gay bisexual and trans people has responded to a survey from Stonewall.A poll of more than 1,600 LGB people found that 61% think they would face barriers from the party because of their sexual orientation if they wanted to be selected to run for parliament.89% said the same about the Conservatives and 47% about the Liberal Democrats. 46% of Labour supporter thought they would face barriers if they wanted to stand for Parliament.
Pension victory for same-sex partners at Euro court 5
12:03 PM — Gay and lesbian activists today welcomed a ruling by the European Court of Justice (ECJ) in Luxembourg on the rights of same-sex partners to 'survivor pensions.'The court ruled that a German gay man is entitled to a payment from the pension of his dead partner.The insurer had rejected his claim to the allowance of €6,400 (£4,330) on the grounds they only make such payments to spouses and not registered partners.