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November 14, 2014

Take Romas Zabarauskas’ test and see how you score

November 10, 2014

Nearly 9 in 10 teachers say homophobic bullying happens in their schools

Nearly nine in 10 secondary school teachers in Scotland say homophobic bullying happens in their school.

The shocking YouGov survey, commissioned by Stonewall Scotland, also revealed a third of teachers hear homophobic language from other staff.

Many assume they are not allowed to talk about LGBTI issues with students, with only 16% saying they have had specific training to tackle homophobic bullying. 

November 8, 2014

Think that your sexuality has no bearing on your work? An LGBT business conference taking place in London today reminded those attending that honesty fosters stronger and more authentic business relationships

Although an increasing number of young LGBT people are confident enough to be out whilst at university or business school, it’s estimated that around 61% choose to go back into the closet when they enter the world of business.

In fact, a recent study by Deloitte concluded that 85% of LGBT employees chose not to be out to their work colleagues.

November 5, 2014

The NFL’s treatment of Michael Sam is a warning to gay athletes that coming out can still harm your career – particularly in team sports

In my last GSN column I asked if the NFL was being homophobic in its treatment of Michael Sam?
 
This was directly after he had been cut from the St Louis Rams and was just about to be been picked up by the Dallas Cowboys to be part of their practice squad.
 
At the time it was quite apparent that this was not a good position for Sam to find himself in, so for him now to have been cut from his second team in only a matter of weeks it leaves some serious questions to be answered?
 

November 2, 2014

Are your children equipped to deal with the potential challenges of being raised by same-sex parents? We asked author Matt Hudson for his six top tips to better empower our kids

Kids raised by same-sex parents may encounter unique challenges as they grow up: from simply being asked crass questions by curious outsiders about their family set-up to experiences of stigma and discrimination.

October 31, 2014

British columnist claims Woman and Equalities Minister Nicky Morgan is 'inadequate'

The Daily Mail's notorious columnist Richard Littlejohn has written an article claiming those who try to stop bullying of gay teens are 'diversity Nazis'.

The 60-year-old has criticized Education Secretary Nicky Morgan for her decision to pledge £2 million to fight homophobic, biphobic and transphobic bullying in British schools.

October 29, 2014

Nicky Morgan has revealed a £2 million package for charities to come up with ideas to tackle homophobia

The UK government has pledged to spend more on tackling homophobic bullying today (29 October).

Nicky Morgan, the Secretary of State for Education and Minister for Women and Equalities, announced the government will be offering a £ 2 million ($3.23 million, €2.53 million) package.

The government is hoping for charitable and not-for-profit organizations to come forward with creative ideas to help stamp out homophobic, biphobic and transphobic bullying in British schools.

October 24, 2014

Roy Hodgson says he 'suspects' a professional footballer could be gay, but admits he has never met one

England men's football manager Roy Hodgson has said he has no idea what the acronym 'LGBT' stands for.

The 67-year-old has admitted to being 'naive' on the subject of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender issues in football.

Speaking to Cambridge University Union, Hodgson was reportedly asked by a student where he stood on LGBT players in the game.

He then asked the student what 'LGBT' meant', and when he was told, he shrugged and said: 'It's not my world'.

October 23, 2014

A viral promotion campaign, in which youngsters use curse words to complain about society’s continuing sexism, has caused a storm of reactions on the internet and been pulled from YouTube

We love anything that questions gender stereotypes and confronts sexism, including the latest viral campaign from FCKH8.com – the non-profit T-shirt company that uses slogans and images to campaign against homophobia, racism and sexism.

Its latest viral video is entitled ‘F-Bombs for Feminism’, and features a selection of young girls, aged 6-13, using what some would say was decidedly un-lady like language to address notions of gender stereotypes.

October 22, 2014

Students and pupils are invited to bake a rainbow-themed cake to coincide with the upcoming Anti-Bullying Week in the UK this November

Educate and Celebrate, the UK-based organization that helps schools to become LGBT-friendly, is launching a special competition to coincide with Britain’s 2014 Anti-Bullying Week (17-21 Nov).

In conjunction with Gay Star News, it is asking pupils and students to take part in its ‘Edu-bake & Cel-a-cake’ Great Rainbow Bake Off. To do this, they will have to send in pictures of home-baked rainbow cakes.

The aim of the contest is to raise awareness around diversity issues during National Anti-Bullying Week.

October 20, 2014

As part of Hate Crime Awareness Week, pupils at Sheringham High School road tested a new 'Stop Homophobic Bullying' education pack

Pictured here are Year 8 pupils at Sheringham High School in Norfolk, England. To coincide with Hate Crime Awareness Week, the students took part in a pilot scheme last week for a new education pack to tackle homophobic bullying.

The resource, entitled Stop Homophobic Bullying, was created by the county’s BLAH LGBTI Youth group – which has been providing support for young lesbian, gay and bisexual people in the Norfolk area since 2007.

October 17, 2014

Annual Spirit Day campaign had Laverne Cox, Demi Lovato, Billie Jean King and others in purple attire

To mark Spirit Day on Thursday (16 October), a number of celebrities wore purple and millions of other people decided to 'go purple' online in a united stand against bullying and to show their support for LGBT youth.

Emmy nominated actress Laverne Cox took things a step further when she took part in lighting New York City's famed Empire State Building purple for the night.

October 14, 2014

Are you a twin? Are you gay or bisexual and your sibling is straight? Then you might be able to help in a new study

Twins could hold the key to how our childhood experiences shape our sexual experiences and well-being.

Researchers at the University of Essex are seeking identical twins where one is gay or bisexual and the other is straight. Twins where both are gay, bisexual or straight are also being asked to help with the study.

They hope by studying these sets of twins, they will be able to uncover what social experiences during childhood make us become the people we are and how satisfied we are in life.

October 10, 2014

From Michael Sam to Ellen Page, celebrate Coming Out Day with a reminder of some of the most notable coming outs this year

Thousands of people have come out since the last National Coming Out Day. Some bad, some amazing, and some so heartwarming you will cry.

We'd might like to live in a world where coming out doesn't make the news. But as long as anyone alive has a bad coming out, disowned by their families or thrown out onto the streets, then celebrities coming out can still change lives.

It's all about breaking barriers and being who you are, and all 18 people on this list epitomise this.

October 9, 2014

Emmy nominee wants to send strong message against bullying 'so that young people don't have to go through what I did'

Next Thursday (16 October), Laverne Cox will help New York City's Empire State Building go purple.

The Emmy nominated star of Orange is the New Black will be on hand to light the iconic landmark which has been featured in such films as Sleepless in Seattle and An Affair to Remember.

The purple is part of Spirit Day which is held each year during National Bullying Prevention month.

Schools and communities are urged to wear purple to show their support and to raise awareness about people who have been bullied in the past and who are still being bullied.

October 9, 2014

The 'accidental activist' tells GSN how changing her gender marker changed her life

It took Geena Rocero nearly a decade to come out publicly as transgender from the time she moved to New York to become a model. But when she did, she came out to an audience of 2 million and counting in a TED talk on March 31, the International Transgender Day of Visibility.

Rocero, 30, grew up in Manila and entered and won her first beauty pageant at the age of 15. She originally intended to follow her transgender friends to Japan, but she changed her plans when she found out she could change her gender marker in California - and in doing so change her life.

October 8, 2014

The male gender marker will also be removed

A Kenyan transgender activist yesterday won a landmark case to change the name on her high school exam certificate.

The high court gave the Kenya National Examinations Council (KNEC) 45 days to change the name from Andrew Mbugua to Audrey Mbugua on her Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education.

She graduated with an A- grade.

The male gender mark will also be removed and any cost will be met by Mbugua.

Mbugua described her win as 'a huge watershed moment.'

September 30, 2014

For Richard Blanco, coming out was 'just a slow sort of easing into'

Richard Blanco was chosen in 2013 to do what such celebrated American poets as Robert Frost and Maya Angelo had done in the past: write an original poem and recite it at the inauguration of a US president.

Blanco made all kinds of history at the second inaugural of US President Barack Obama with his poem One Today. He was first openly gay man chosen as inaugural poet, the first Latino, and at 44, the youngest.

Blanco has written a new memoir, The Prince of Los Cocuyos, in which he writes about how, growing up in Miami as part of a Cuban family, he hid being gay.

September 29, 2014

Elly Barnes, CEO and Founder of the UK’s Educate & Celebrate organization, says that the decision whether the come out or not remains a pressing concern for LGBT teachers today

Despite Section 28 being repealed in the United Kingdom 11 years ago, being ‘out’ is still an issue for many teachers today. A recent trainee of mine enthusiastically began to make their school LGBT-friendly only to be told by a senior leader that they couldn’t… because of Section 28!

That notorious piece of legislation, which barred local authorities from ‘promoting’ LGBT issues, was repealed in 2003. We had to wait a further seven years for the Equality Act in 2010, which ensured LGBT be treated ‘equally and fairly’.

September 9, 2014

The ‘gay’ chair, the child called ‘it’, the girl hit with a softball bat and the kids who think it’s ok to use anti-LGBTI language as long as it’s to their friends

Classroom commotions never bode well, even at the best of times. This was not the best of times: this was half past eight on a Monday morning in an unfamiliar school.

The problem, it transpired, was there were precisely 23 chairs in the room. There were 23 students - the math seemed simple enough. ‘But look!’ came the anguished howl, in a tone so plaintive I half expected the chair to be riddled with spikes.

Instead, a crude hand had wittily scrawled on it ‘whoeva sits on this cHair is gay’ [sic].

September 8, 2014

In an exclusive piece for Gay Star News, UK Minister for Women and Equalities Nicky Morgan explains why the commitment to equality cannot end at Britain’s shores

It’s a source of great pride to me that the UK has been recognized by the International Lesbian and Gay Association (ILGA) as being a European leader in equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people for the fourth year running.

It’s thanks to the heroic work and unrelenting passion of campaigners and activists that LGBT young people growing up in Britain today can be confident that society is on their side.

September 6, 2014

'Bullying works on a level. You get to be part of the group. The catch is, you’re never really equal. People are afraid of you'

Two-time Emmy winner Jane Lynch knows a thing or two about the main character in her new children's book Marlene, Marlene, Queen of Mean.

In the book, to be released later this month, Marlene is a bully.

There were times when Lynch was too as a kid.

The Glee star and host of Hollywood Game Night says she realized this while working on the book with her then wife, Dr. Lara Embry, a psychologist who was a consultant on the book.

August 22, 2014

Why I founded rucomingout and what I’ve learned after 250 inspiring and moving coming out stories

I launched rucomingout.com in March 2012 when I was working as a youth worker for Britain’s National Health Service.

I was working with a 17-year-old called Jay and he told me he was gay. He had so many questions about coming out and what it was like to be gay. He regularly heard his parents use homophobic language and never heard any of his friends speak positively about being gay.

He feared he would be excluded from his group of friends and disowned by his parents.

August 21, 2014

Five men were arrested in an incident rumored to be motivated by homophobia

Police are investigating after five people were arrested in what is believed to be an anti-gay attack in Manchester’s Canal Street.

The incident has come in the days leading up to Manchester Pride, one of the last biggest gay events in the UK this year.

Police were called to Canal Street, the area most popular with the city’s LGBTI community, on 17 August on 11.10pm.

Officers arrested five men who were fighting in the street. Two have been released without charge and three others have been bailed pending further enquiries.