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January 24, 2015

Conviction of Children-404’s Lena Klimova proves hideous law is alive and well

Lena Klimova, the founder of LGBTI kids’ support group Children-404 in Russia, is the latest victim of the country’s controversial ‘anti-gay propaganda law’.

The social worker has been fined 50,000 rubles ($780, €700) by the Russian courts for creating the online community group in March 2013.

The website encourages young people to share experiences of how it feels to grow up as an LGBTI person. It’s said Klimova, who was previously acquitted of the same charge, did not have access to legal counsel before her conviction.

January 23, 2015

'There was never a moment where I made an intellectual choice that I would be a supporter of gay civil rights'

Patrick Stewart, who plays a bisexual Juilliard dance teacher in the new film Match, was misidentified as a gay man by a British newspaper last year.

While some straight men might go into a bit of a panic over such a thing, Stewart insists he was 'utterly flattered' and told close friend Ian McKellen 'this is a very distinctive honor that I’ve been awarded.'

It's no surprise Stewart would be so enthusiastic about it all since he has long been a staunch supporter of equality for gays and lesbians.

January 22, 2015

Lesbian couple finds 'lesos,' 'sluts' and 'poofta' spray-painted in their home

A lesbian couple from Australia were the targets of a hate crime justs days after they were forced out of their home by severe flooding.

Lavinia Pike Tuesday (20 January) found their house in Sandford, Tasmania vandalized with anti-gay graffiti when she returned to feed their pets.

Pike, who suffers from chronic asthma and an acquired brain injury, said she was stunned to find hate speech such as 'lesos,' 'sluts' and 'poofta' spray-painted throughout the home she shares with her partner Kelly Kluga and daughter Bella Kenworthy, 13.

January 22, 2015

Proposed Manchester school would help support bullied and outcast LGBTIA kids

A campaign is being launched against plans to build the UK's first 'gay school' in Manchester.

LGBT Youth North West, based in the city centre, wish to take around 40 full time and 20 part-time LGBTI pupils and their allies.

It is hoped the school will help bullied and outcast kids that need additional support. It is currently in the 'consultation' stages of the planning.

January 22, 2015

Ellen tweets later: 'I can’t stop thinking about this father. I wish all parents could be like this'

In just one week, the YouTube video of gay twins Aaron and Austin Rhodes coming out to their dad has been viewed more than 14 million times.

Their courage got the attention of Ellen DeGeneres who welcomed the twins onto her daytime talk show this week along with their dad who, although caught by surprise, managed to say all the right things.

January 22, 2015

'It was a 20-minute ceremony with no witnesses and it cost £4'

Dominic Hannigan has become the first member of the Irish parliament to enter into a gay marriage.

The Labour MP for Meath East yesterday (21 January) announced he wed his partner of more than two decades, Chris, in London on New Year’s Eve.

'It was a 20-minute ceremony with no witnesses and it cost £4 ($6, €5.20),' he told the Irish Star.

Gay marriage is not yet legal in Ireland but a referendum on the issue will be held in May.

January 22, 2015

Calls it a 'slanderous' accusation

Japanese pro soccer player Riku Matsuda has denied he appeared in two gay porn films.

The 23-year-old Tokyo FC defender has responded to internet slueths who have compared stills of him and the actor who appeared in the videos, translated from Japanese, called 'At Last After Negotiating for 6 months the Active Duty Rugby Man Gave In!!' and 'Beast Premium Disc 097'.

Both feaure an actor called Takeyama Shotaro, a name which can translate into English as the 'boy snake', said to be Matsuda's stage name. 

January 22, 2015

Three LGBT business leaders, in Davos for the World Economic Forum, have taken part in a live, online discussion about LGBT workplace issues and the importance of senior-ranking role models

In a live discussion this afternoon from Davos, Switzerland, hosted by CNN’s Richard Quest, three senior business figures have voiced their thoughts on LGBT issues in the workplace, and offered an insight into their own personal journeys in the business world.

January 21, 2015

President Obama calls gay marriage a 'civil right'

US president Barack Obama made history today (21 January) by saying the words 'lesbian,' 'bisexual' and 'transgender' for the first in a state of the union address.

The president said that he pushed for LGBTI rights because 'as Americans, we respect human dignity.'

'That’s why we defend free speech, and advocate for political prisoners, and condemn the persecution of women, or religious minorities, or people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender,' he said.

January 21, 2015

Irish public will vote in May

The wording of the same-sex marriage referendum in Ireland is now agreed on, it was announced today (21 January).

The Irish public will vote on same-sex marriage in May, the first country in the world to put the issue to a public vote.

They will be asked whether they agree or disagree with the following: 'Marriage may be contracted in accordance with law by two persons without distinction as to their sex'.

The government will also enact legislative changes allowing same-sex partners to adopt children.

January 21, 2015

Recent murder of a transgender woman is blamed on state and police apathy

Transgender activists in the Indian city of Hyderabad have called for a panel similar to the Human Rights Commission, citing a rise in anti-trans violence in Telangana state.

The Telangana Hijra Transgender Samithi (THTS) collective made the demand on Monday (19 January) after the murder of one of their sisters.

Pavallika, 25, was found dead on a construction site in the early hours of Saturday (17 January) morning.

January 21, 2015

Following a TV debate on the issue of same-sex marriage, the Irish government has acted to clarify the bill relating to adoption by same-sex couples, and the specific wording of its marriage equality referendum

Ireland’s coalition government has confirmed that it plans to enact legislative changes allowing same-sex partners to adopt children before the country’s planned referendum on same-sex marriage in early May.

Currently, gay people can only apply to adopt as individuals. Changes allowing gay couples to jointly adopt will be outlined in the Children and Family Relationships Bill, which the government has confirmed will be published next month.

January 21, 2015

The Normal Heart, Transparent, Looking and How to Get Away With Murder get nods in crowded TV categories

Oscar best picture nominee The Imitation Game will compete against Love is Strange, Pride, The Skeleton Twins and Tammy for Outstanding Film (wide release) at this year's GLAAD Media Awards.

The awards, now in their 26th year, recognize and honor media for fair, accurate and inclusive representations of the LGBT community and the issues that affect their lives.

GLAAD announced 104 nominees Wednesday (21 January) in 21 English-language categories, and 40 Spanish-language nominees in 10 categories.

January 20, 2015

Openly gay director says men on the DL are 'killing African-American women'

Openly gay director Lee Daniels has said he wants to 'blow the lid off' homophobia in the African-American community in his new TV series Empire.

The Oscar-winning director of Precious said he was frightened by his own father's hostility towards homosexuality and the same attitude was depicted in the lead character's relationship with his gay son.

'Homophobia is rampant in the African American community, and men are on the DL,' he said at a press conference on Saturday (17 January).

January 20, 2015

Supreme Court rules in favor of two non-operative transgender women

Transgender Israelis are no longer required to undergo sex reassignment surgery (SRS) to change the gender designation on their ID cards.

The change comes after the Supreme Court ordered the ministry of interior to legally change the gender of two transgender citizens from male to female, Haaretz newspaper reported.

A petition was filed at the court by a lawyer and an ex-soldier who started transitioning during her compulsory military service.

January 19, 2015

New South Wales politician loses battle with cancer

Paul O'Grady, Australia's first openly gay state MP, died yesterday (18 January) in Sydney after a three-year battle with cancer. He was 57 years old.

The Labor politician was a member of the New South Wales Legislative Council from 1988 to 1996. He became the first parliamentarian in the state to publicly come out in 1990.

O'Grady went on to champion LGBTI issues in parliament and invited all MPs to march with him at Sydney Mardi Gras in 1992.

January 19, 2015

It was announced last week that England’s first ‘gay school', aimed primarily at LGBT pupils, is due to be launched in Manchester. Elly Barnes, CEO and Founder of Educate & Celebrate, explains why she would instead prefer to see all schools adopt LGBT-friendly practices

How do children learn about difference? They learn from their experiences and by who surrounds them.

Through our teacher training and resource program we recognize that those students in multi-cultural areas have a much greater understanding of difference as they are surrounded by people of different cultures, faiths, disabilities, genders, sexual orientations and gender identities.

Creating visibility around these differences increases understanding, acceptance and ‘usualizes’ diversity as a whole in our communities.

January 19, 2015

Feud continues in the Celebrity Big Brother house

Michelle Visage has branded fellow Celebrity Big Brother housemate Perez Hilton 'an embarrasment' who has set the LGBTI community back 50 years.

On Friday (16 January) night, Hilton, 37, gyrated in the garden topless while making sexually suggestive noises in a deliberate attempt to rile up the Rupaul's Drag Race judge.

Visage shortly after visited the diary room, where the crowd favorite slammed his attention-seeking behviour while holding back tears.

'Perez sets our community back 50 years. He’s an embarrassment,' she said.

January 19, 2015

Report finds the women face 'amplified stigma' due to their gender and job

Transgender female sex workers are among the most marginalized and discriminated populations in China, according to a new report.

Based on 10 months of research by Asia Catalyst and two Chinese community-based organizations, Beijing Zuoyou Center and Shanghai CSW (commercial sex worker) and MSM (men who have sex with men) Center, the report found transgender sex workers experience 'amplified stigma' due to both their gender identity and their profession.

January 19, 2015

Corrie star Antony Cotton says he knows lots of gay soccer players but they don't want to come out

Gay actor Antony Cotton has said there are hundreds of gay footballers in the Premier League.

The personality, who plays Sean Tully on Coronation Street, has said 'everyone' knows a gay soccer player, but they're just not ready to come out.

'There are hundreds of gay footballers – hundreds of them, not one or two,' he said.

'If there are 22 gay footballers in a squad, by the law of average there will be two or three gay footballers in every single team. But isn’t it strange there isn’t one out Premier League footballer?

January 17, 2015

Missed the debate at the Gay Star Travel Expo? Find out what the biggest gay political names in the UK said about huge issues

The UK’s first big political debate of 2015 was on gay rights as the three big parties faced off during the Gay Star Travel Expo today (17 January).

Labour’s Lord Michael Cashman, Liberal Democrat’s Baroness Liz Barker and Conservative’s Crispin Blunt MP answered a variety of questions from the engaged and curious British public.

It was chaired by Gay Star News editor Tris Reid-Smith.

They were asked, in overview, what is Britain’s role in global LGBTI rights.

January 16, 2015

New study finds negative social stigmas for bisexuals are causing mental health problems

Bisexual women are more likely to suffer poor mental health compared to lesbians.

A new study published in the Journal of Public Health has claimed  bisexual women were 65% more likely to report eating problems and 37% were more likely to self-harm than lesbians.

Researchers from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine also found they were more likely to have suffered from depression and anxiety than lesbians.

January 16, 2015

Says it is 'only fair to have the same rights as everybody else, then it’s a wonderful world'

Ellen DeGeneres was appearing before TV critics in Pasadena Friday when news broke that that US Supreme Court was taking on four gay marriage cases this term.

'It’s about time,' DeGeneres said from a stage in Pasadena where she was talking up the NBC sitcom One Big Happy during the TV Critics Association Winter Press Tour.

DeGeneres, who married actress Portia de Rossi in 2008 added: 'The thing that changed the civil rights movement was when white people got involved and started marching. We need everyone on our side.

January 16, 2015

'I just knew what we captured could reach people and inspire people'

Aaron and Austin Rhodes had something of a YouTube following but nothing like they do now.

As of Friday afternoon, their coming out video had more than 7.1 million views in just three days.

It features them coming out to their dad on the phone and him telling them he loves them and always will.