18th March 2009
Obama to sign worldwide gay rights declaration 12
10:44 AM — The Obama administration is to endorse a UN declaration calling for the worldwide decriminalisation of homosexuality. President George W Bush had refused to sign the declaration during his office, making the US the only western state not to offer its support.
17th March 2009
Gays and lesbians banned from marching openly in New York St Patick’s Day Parade 67
5:31 PM — Gays and lesbians have once again been barred from marching openly in the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in New York. The annual parade attracts hundreds of thousands of spectators to the streets.
Pope claims condoms ‘could make African AIDS crisis worse’ 59
4:45 PM — Pope Benedict XVI today added to the controversy over the Catholic church's stance on condoms when he argued that they were not the answer to Africa's fight against HIV and Aids and could even make the problem worse.
European Parliament approves extension of LGBT discrimination protection 4
4:27 PM — A report recommending the extension of protection against LGBT discrimination has been approved by the European Parliament's Civil Liberties Committee. Currently, provisions only apply to discrimination on sexual orientation, age, disability or religion in the workplace.
Lib Dems: ‘Tories must clarify whether they plan to ally with homophobes’ 22
3:43 PM — The Liberal Democrats have called for the Conservative Party to clarify whether they intend to form an alliance with the Polish Law and Justice Party in the European Parliament. The Law and Justice Party has a reputation for anti-gay sentiment.
HIV/AIDS ‘epidemic’ in Washington DC 1
3:00 PM — Three per cent of Washington DC residents suffer from HIV or AIDS - a rate higher than in some African countries such as Uganda. According to a report from the city's health department, there has been a 22 per cent increase in rates of the disease since 2006.
Vermont deliberates over gay marriage 9
12:04 PM — A week of hearings began yesterday on a bill to allow same-sex couples in Vermont, US, to marry. If approved, the state would join Massachusetts and Connecticut as the only US states that allow gay marriage.
Oklahoma teacher resigns over gay film 9
10:36 AM — A teacher in Oklahoma, US, has lost her job after showing students The Laramie Project, a film about murdered gay teenager Matthew Shepard. Debra Taylor resigned from Grandfield High School after showing the film and allowing students to film their own short clips about it.
Lesbian student permitted to wear prom tux
10:09 AM — A lesbian student in Indiana, US, has been allowed to wear a tuxedo to her school prom. The anonymous student sued Lebanon Schools last week, complaining that the school's special dress code for prom required her to wear a formal gown, discriminating against her and violating her rights to expression.
16th March 2009
Mexican politician hopes to be first gay mayor
5:58 PM — An openly gay Social Democrat Party (PSD) politician is to stand for mayor of Guadalajara in Mexico. Miguel Galán, 31, will discover whether his party will put him forward as the official candidate at the end of this month, reports The Argentimes.
Interview: Britain’s gay Consul General to Cape Town 6
5:28 PM — Coming from Leeds polytechnic university, Richard Wood was always going to be an unusual diplomat. Currently, he heads the British Consulate in Cape Town and lives in the city with his partner, riding a red Vespa to work.
Opponents seek to repeal gay and trans protection provisions in Florida 6
3:18 PM — Voting has begun today on whether to repeal a Gainesville, Florida, ordinance that gives protection to LGBT citizens. If passed, the Charter Amendment 1 will make the ordinance conform to the Florida Civil Rights Act, cancelling the anti-discrimination protections Gainesville extends to gay, lesbian, bisexual and trans people.
Homophobic hate crimes ‘linked to Prop 8′ 5
2:25 PM — A surge in anti-gay hate crimes has been linked to Proposition 8, the initiative that banned same-sex marriage in California. Homophobic incidents accounted for more than half of hate crime cases last year - 56 per cent up frpm 15 per cent in 2007.
Lamba Legal urges court to reject Howard K Stern’s gay defamation claim
2:08 PM — LGBT charity Lambda Legal has filed a brief arguing that a federal court should reject Howard K Stern’s claim that being called gay is defamatory and entitles him to collect damages.
Nigerian Archbishop ‘wants gay wedding witnesses to be jailed” 26
1:47 PM — Archbishop of the Anglican Church of Nigeria, Peter Akinola, has said that gay marriage is "capable of engendering moral and social holocaust" and has called for those who attend gay weddings to be sentenced to a year in jail.
Portia de Rossi: ‘I cried when Prop 8 passed’
10:48 AM — Portia de Rossi has spoken of her sadness at the passing of Proposition 8, which banned gay marriage in California.
13th March 2009
Study to be released on poverty among gay Americans 8
5:48 PM — An analysis of poverty among lesbian, gay and bisexual Americans is to be presented to Congress next Friday. Its authors have said it undermines myth of gay affluence and demonstrates that lesbian, gay and bisexual citizens are as likely, or more likely, to be poor than heterosexuals.
Obama to decide on gay partnership rights 5
5:11 PM — US president Barack Obama is to decide whether the government must provide health insurance benefits to the same-sex partners of federal employees.
US Republican Party head: ‘I can’t deny gays their nature’ 12
4:49 PM — The new head of the Republican Party, Michael Steele, has spoken out on gay issues. However, he admitted being against marriage for same-sex couples but denied his view was homophobic.
Gay men in Jamaica ‘face higher levels of HIV due to discrimination’ 4
4:00 PM — Gay Jamaican men are suffering from high levels of sexually-transmitted diseases due to discriminaty barriers in accessing healthcare, it has been suggested. According to the Caribbean HIV & AIDS Alliance, gay men are reluctant to go to healthcare providers because of homophobic laws and attitudes in the country.