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December 19, 2014

Campaigners say this is the last step to stopping Chinese people thinking being gay is a disease

A Chinese court has ordered a clinic that shocked a gay man to 'cure' him to pay compensation.

This ruling is being considered as China's first case involving 'conversion therapy', with campaigners saying it could lead to people to stop thinking homosexuality is a disease.

Beijing's Haidian District People's Court ordered the clinic to pay 3,500 yuan ($560, €458) to 30-year-old Yang Teng, who said he was 'very satisfied with the results'.

December 19, 2014

Trailblazing activists reach out to queer community in Southeastern Europe

It has been called the most anti-gay country in Europe – after last year's European Social Survey (ESS) indicated that over 53% of people there opposed homosexuality.

However, a gay rights group in Albania has broken boundaries by opening the first LGBTI shelter in the country.

The project, founded by queer gay rights groups Alenaca LGBT and ProLGBT, will help queer victims of violence, domestic abuse and homelessness.

December 19, 2014

More than 40% of MPs vote in favor of the draft bill

Polish lawmakers has voted against putting a gender-neutral civil unions bill on the agenda of this parliamentary session.

MPs on Wednesday (17 December) voted down the bill proposed by the Your Movement party by 235 ballots to 185, with 18 absentations.

This is the third time parliament has rejected the legislation, which was first introduced in 2012.

December 19, 2014

A 23-year-old woman no longer 'fears death' after being given reprieve from deportation

A Ugandan lesbian who was tortured to 'cure' her will not be deported from the UK - for now.

Judith Twikirize, 23, is walking free after a sudden decision to release her from Yarl's Wood detention centre last night (18 December).

While she has not been granted asylum, the UK government has agreed to look at new evidence before they make their next decision.

Twikirize has told GSN she feels like the 'fear of death' is no longer on her back.

December 18, 2014

Prosecutors refer the case to trial unusually quickly

Twenty-six men arrested in a much publicized raid on an alleged gay bathhouse in Cairo will stand trial for 'debauchery' on Sunday.

Prosecutors refered the case to trial yesterday, less than two weeks after the raid. This is unusually quick as some wait up to a year to go to trial in Egypt's backlogged judicial system.

Police raided the bathhouse on 7 December after a tip-off from a journalist.

December 18, 2014

Poll finds significant change in attitudes over the past decade

The majority of South Korea still opposes gay marriage although there has been a significant changes in attitude over the past decade, according to a new survey.

A Gallup poll released last week (12 December) found that 35% of respondents were in favor of legalizing gay marriage, more than double the proportion 13 years ago.

In the same period, opposition to gay marriage fell from 67% from to 56%.

An overwhelming 85% of respondents said they were in favor of equal opportunities for gay people in the workplace.

December 18, 2014

'The school should not acquiesce to the discriminatory suppression of student group activities'

A Taiwanese university's decision to tear down a poster for a lecture by a gay speaker because it was 'afraid everyone would turn homosexual after listening' has sparked online debate in the country.

The openly gay director of the Alliance to End the Death Penalty, Miao Po-ya, last night (17 November) gave a lecture at Fu Jen Catholic University in Taipei entitled My Coming Out Experience.

December 18, 2014

And, according to a new study, don't be a gay guy

Want to get paid more than your colleagues? The key, apparently, is to be a lesbian.

A new study has showed a person's sexual orientation affects how much they earn, and while it's good news for the lady-loving woman, it's not for gay men.

In the US alone, the pay premium rises to 20% for lesbians compared to straight women while gay men can expect to be paid 16% less than straight men.

December 17, 2014

Free app launches next week

A new 'mind-blowing' dating app for lesbians is set to launch next week.

Scissr was 'designed by lesbians for lesbians [and] is tailor-made for all – dyke, queer, gay, lesbian, bisexual, and bi-curious.'

Creator Allison Ullrich, 36, said the free app was location-based gay like Grindr – 'only classier.'

The general manager of an indoor climbing facility said the app was borne out of her frustrations with dating after moving to Chicago one and a half years ago.

December 16, 2014

And they fail miserably

The 'gay cure' group behind the debunked billboard in Richmond, Virginia has attempted to defend themselves, and have of course failed miserably.

The erected billboard showed what it claimed was a photo of identical twins, one gay and one straight, to prove 'nobody is born gay'.

It was paid for by Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays and Gays (PFOX).

But then, the stock-photo model in the poster came forward, saying he doesn't actually have a twin sibling and he is openly - and proudly - gay.

December 16, 2014

She is among the 80 lawmakers demanding ban be replaced with a policy based on individual risk factors

A coalition of federal lawmakers called on the US government to end its lifetime ban on gay men donating blood.

The letter to the federal Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) was led by the first openly gay US senator - Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin - as well as fellow Senate Democrats Tom Harkin of Iowa and Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Democratic members of the US House of Representatives Barbara Lee of California and Mike Quigley of Illinois.

December 16, 2014

Kathryn Knott, Philip Williams and Kevin Harrigan will be tried as a group for on aggravated assault, criminal conspiracy and other charges

Two men and the daughter of a local sheriff were ordered to stand trial Tuesday (16 December) in connection with the September beating of a gay couple in Philadelphia.

Kevin Harrigan, 26, Philip Williams, 24, and Kathryn Knott, 24, are to be tried for aggravated assault, criminal conspiracy and other charges.

The trio cannot be charged with a hate crime, however, because sexual orientation is not covered in the stat of Pennsylvania's current hate crime law.

December 16, 2014

This happened in February, and the effects are still being felt today

The Sochi Winter Olympics 2014 will go down in history as the event that made gay rights not just an issue to discuss, but the center of a civil rights firestorm.

Even though it happened in February, the reverberations of the protests are still being felt as we reach the end of the year.

December 16, 2014

Has rid himself of voice inside saying: 'You're a fag. You're a queen. You're undeserving of love'

When Tom Luchsinger won the 200m Butterly at the US National Championships in June of 2013, the pressure of being a closeted gay man multiplied.

All of a sudden he was projected to make the 2016 Olympic Team and was getting attention from fans, had a sponsor, and felt a new responsibility to keep the swimming community updated on the majority of his life.

It was a life that was dominated by something other than swimming: a fear of being outed.

December 14, 2014

Figures also show that lesbian couples are more likely to get married or be in a registered relationship than gay male couples

New research conducted by the Williams InstituteNot only are same-sex couples generally as good as or better at parenting than their straight counterparts as studies have shown, a new study says they are no worse or even better at marriage.

New research conducted by the Williams Institute, at the University of California, Los Angeles, has found that same-sex couples end their marriages at a lower rate than straight couples.

December 13, 2014

Model Kyle Roux: 'I was obviously quite shocked'

Imagine Kyle Roux's surprise when he learned photos of him are being used on a billboard erected in Virginia by an 'ex-gay' group.

The billboard on I-95 in Richmond by Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays and Gays (PFOX) reads: 'Identical twins. One is gay, one is not. Nobody is born gay.'

Roux, who is gay, does not have a twin.

Both images are from a portfolio shot of him about a decade ago for use in commercial and corporate ads and other materials. He signed away his rights to the photo and has had no control over how they are used.

December 12, 2014

Marchers denounce the EU's withdrawal of aid over the country's anti-gay law

Thousands of Gambians on Tuesday (9 December) marched through the capital Banjul denouncing the EU for withdrawing foreign aid over the country's new anti-gay law.

President Yahya Jammeh joined protesters, who held placards and banners reading, ‘Homosexuality is inhuman,’ ‘Even cows don’t do it!’ and ‘Homosexuality is forbidden in Islam.’

The European Union withdrew millions of euros in aid after the west African country passed a law to punish 'aggravated homosexuality' with life imprisonment in September.

December 12, 2014

'I’ve always felt the correct retort to “It’s a choice” is “Prove it. Suck my dick'"

Controversial sex columnist Dan Savage has never been one to sugarcoat his words and that was the case in a new interview in which he told Republican Mike Huckabee to 'suck my dick.'

In the interview published today in Playboy magazine, the LGBTI activist laid into others in the media who offer sex advice.

'Dr Laura is a vile piece of shit,' he said.

What about Dr Phil?

December 12, 2014

And it might just surprise you

Listening to a gay person talking about how they want to get married is the best way of getting a former homophobe to change their minds, a new study has found.

Researchers from Columbia University and the University of California has found a gay person is far more effective than straight person in shifting voters' views towards supporting marriage equality.

December 12, 2014

Recriminalization of homosexuality leads to an increase in anti-gay violence

More than 500 LGBTI activists yesterday attended a hearing in New Delhi on the consequences of India's recriminalization of gay sex.

The Supreme Court reinstated Section 377 of the penal code on 11 December 2013, which organizers India HIV/AIDS Alliance (Alliance India) said has led to an increase in anti-gay violence, stigma and discrimination and adversely affected the uptake of HIV services.

December 12, 2014

Nigerian pastor explains why Jesus loves gays but African Christians do not

To win the struggle to change men and women’s hearts and minds, one must consider what the Bible calls strongholds – ideologies, views or thinking that have been held on to for a long time.

When that thinking is wrong, the challenge is great.

Many African strongholds include the view that homosexuality is paganistic and paganism is bad. The second is that gay white men want to pollute black children (see the justifications for Uganda's anti-gay laws).

December 11, 2014

Another one has come back to the fold

Another 'ex-gay' leader has come out as gay and proved once again that 'cures' do not exist and are detrimental to a person's health.

Christian Schizzel, who spent seven years as the poster boy for the young generation of 'ex-gays', has said he was manipulated and 'molded' by his religious peers.

But now he is out, repenting his past and apologizing if he has influenced anyone to believe that it is possible to 'cure' your sexuality.

December 11, 2014

Andrew Barr says he will campaign to marry his partner of 15 years

Andrew Barr today became the first gay government leader after he was sworn in as chief minister of the Australian Capital Territory (ACT).

He won yesterday's leadership ballot unopposed after the incumbent leader quit last week and said he would use his position to advocate for gay marriage.

During his emotional acceptance speech at the ACT legislative assembly, the Labor politician turned to his partner in the gallery and said, 'Anthony, I love you.

'I look forward to the day when we can legally marry in this country.'

December 11, 2014

You will not believe what happened in conservative Korea

A Korean middle school student's response to a survey on homosexuality has gone viral in the conservative country after their former teacher posted it online last week.

The principal heard a rumor that two students were in a lesbian relationship and created a survey to find out who they were and punish them.

Students were assured their answers were anonymous and their honesty would help create a 'safe and healthy school environment.'