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December 19, 2014

Actress reunites with Devil Wears Prada co-star Meryl Streep in the musical Into the Woods

It's not lost on Emily Blunt that she has many gay fans.

'I know that’s my demographic. That’s been made clear to me by my fans,' the Into the Woods star tells The Advocate.

Blunt, whose other film credits include The Devil Wears Prada and Edge of Tomorrow, doesn't mind being recognized by her gay fans while she's out and about.

'I love it,' she says. 'I think it’s so cool, because one day I hope to be a gay icon.'

December 19, 2014

She used to be a homophobe. Now she’s a hero

My first interaction with Kathy Baldock, the founder and director of Canyon Walker Connections, was in 2012.

November 21, 2014

'The extreme characters you used to see in the old days, you just don’t see them anymore, and I really do miss them'

Bette Midler, who got her start performing at a bathhouse in New York City, said this week that she misses the outrageousness of those days.

'The extreme characters you used to see in the Village in the old days, you just don’t see them anymore,' Midler tells Advocate.com.

November 20, 2014

Facebook, Yelp, Apple and Xerox are among the top scorers

A record 366 US companies have received a perfect score for LGBTI workplace inclusion in the new Corporate Equality Index released yesterday (19 November).

Top scorers included newcomers Facebook and Yelp as well as stalwarts Apple and Xerox, who have been leaders in LGBTI equality in the workplace since Human Rights Campaign began the biannual survey in 2002.

Apple CEO Tim Cook, who recently came out as gay, celebrated the company's 13th consecutive perfect score on Twitter:

November 11, 2014

Hijras cannot inherit property in the conservative Muslim country

Bangladeshi lawmakers have called for more rights for transgender women, whom the government recognized as a third gender a year ago today.

Proposals for inheritance rights and schools for hijras were made at a seminar in Dhaka on Sunday, which was part of Hijra Pride - the first LGBTI pride event in the conservative Muslim country.

November 11, 2014

Ahead of the UK”s Anti-Bullying Week, teacher Allie George says that even kids who normally recognize homophobia can still sometimes use inappropriate language

Mark* has just handed me his English coursework: a compelling speech on homophobia, and how he cannot fathom such attitudes of bigotry and hatred in 2014.

Now, Mark is sat sheepishly in front of me, having been kept behind for yelling, “Oi, f*****t” at his friend.

‘It’s just a thing they say to each other,’ he says by way of defense. He’s not homophobic. It’s ‘banter’. Like swearing, ‘it’s okay when it’s at a mate.’

November 10, 2014

Singer-actor has flashed his abs at gay club and more to promote his new album

Nick Jonas has been seemingly everywhere lately - including some gay clubs.

He's got a new self-titled album to promote and he's been aggressively targeting his gay fan base.

November 6, 2014

Thousands attended the funeral of Boston’s greatest mayor and a powerful ally for LGBTI citizens of all ethnicities and backgrounds

Thousands attended the funeral of Thomas Menino on Sunday – one of the best mayors the city of Boston ever had.

Menino was not just Boston’s longest-serving mayor but also a public servant of great integrity who served all his people.

He was possibly the most pro-LGBTI mayor in the country.

November 5, 2014

Brazilian is the first transgender woman to front a global beauty brand

Lea T has been announced as the new muse of US hair care brand Redken, making her the the first transgender model to land a major contract in the conservative beauty industry.

'Lea T is a true pioneer for beauty,' said Leslie Marino, general manager of Redken US.

'She shares Redken's vision of global beauty, and has a unique sense of self and a beauty that is undeniably her own.'

The Brazilian was first discovered by Givenchy designer Riccardo Tisci and became the face of the fashion house in 2010.

October 31, 2014

This heartwarming story about a little boy named Grayson with a life-threatening disease and his two awesome dads will make you cry

It all started with a haircut. Chad, a 22-year-old man, not out about his sexuality, got into Wayne’s chair at a salon. They went on a date a week later. Over the course of a year, they realized their slow moving relationship had built into something very solid. At the time, they had no idea how solid it was going to have to be.

October 30, 2014

Twenty models from six Asian cities feature in the awareness drive

Taiwanese diva and gay icon A-mei is the face and body of a nude gay awareness campaign for ELEMENT magazine.

She will also appear on the cover of the Singapore-based LGBTI bi-monthly, the only cover shoot she is doing this year. 

A-mei said, 'Love needs to be respected regardless of who you are, who I am.

'I hope by taking part in this campaign, more people will be aware, understand and recognize the LGBT community.'

October 16, 2014

New South Wales, South Australia and Tasmania have introduced bills to repeal laws forcing married transgender people to divorce before their new gender is recognized

Three Australian states today introduced bills to scrap laws that require married transgender people to divorce before their new gender is recognized.

Legislation was introduced in New South Wales by Greens legislative council member Mehreen Faruqi and Independent legislative assembly member Alex Greenwich, in South Australia by Greens legislative council member Tammy Franks, and by Greens house of assembly member Nick McKim in Tasmania.

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.

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 18, 2014

'I'm a person who believes in standing up for his friends'

True Blood actor Joe Manganiello has revealed why he is such a staunch fighter for LGBTI equality.

'I had to watch my friends endure challenges not experienced by the straight community,' he said last weekend in Seattle while accepting the Ally for Equality Award from the Human Rights Campaign.

Manganiello shared how he saw friends in school struggle with their sexuality and having their families not accept them and later he saw friends struggle in the job market or live in secret.

September 17, 2014

'The guy’s such a stud. I met him once playing golf and couldn’t stop shaking his hand ... we had five good seconds of eye lock'

David Walton, star on the NBC comedy About a Boy, says NFL quarterback Tom Brady is an even bigger crush for him than Tom Cruise or Ryan Gosling.

The actor is straight but thinks sexuality is on a continuum 'with 1 being the strictest hetero and 10 being a gay person who’d vomit thinking about sleeping with the opposite sex.'

Walton says he's a 3 but tells The Advocate there are a few men who could cause the number to grow.

September 4, 2014

From early AIDS fundraisers to marrying couples in the last year of her life, Rivers was a staunch LGBT ally

Like a lot of gays, Joan Rivers considered herself an outsider and an underdog.

But she never let that stop her. In fact, it fueled her.

From her rise to stardom in the 1960s through her final episode of Fashion Police which aired just last week, Rivers kept her legions of loyal gay fans entertained and inspired.

She told Gay Star News in 2012: 'They were the first ones to laugh at me.'

August 20, 2014

Mariela Castro, a member of Cuba’s National Assembly and daughter of President Raul Castro, cast a ‘no’ vote in protest over a new labor code that protects sexual minorities but not transgender people or people with HIV from discrimination

Outspoken Cuban LGBTI rights advocate Mariela Castro has cast a historic ‘no’ vote in Cuba’s National Assembly which experts believe is the first time a dissenting vote has been recorded in the chamber since the Cuban Revolution of 1959.

Mariela, who is the daughter of Cuban President Raul Castro and the niece of revolutionary leader Fidel Castro, cast the vote in December of last year in protest at a new labor code that protects sexual minorities but not transgender people or people with HIV from workplace discrimination.

August 15, 2014

Gay Christian rock star says she wants to come out to help young people in the church who could be affected by extremist homophobic pastors

US pastor Scott Lively, who believes gay people can be ‘cured’, came to blows with lesbian Christian rock star Vicky Beeching yesterday (14 August).

He told her she had ‘given into a lie’ into believing there is any such thing as a ‘gay person’.

Beeching, a British theologian and musician who made her name in the US Bible Belt and came out this week, said she wants to become an advocate for gay rights within the church.

But Lively has called on Beeching to not succumb to the ‘temptations of the flesh’ and repent her ‘sins’.

August 5, 2014

Public Advocate of Bolivia Rolando Villena has called on his government to include same-sex civil unions in a new Family Code being considered by lawmakers

Bolivia’s Public Advocate has called on Bolivian lawmakers to allow same-sex couples to formalize their relationships in a way that is similar to marriage but has stopped short of calling for full marriage equality in the South American nation.

Rolando Villena made the call in late July via a public statement in which he said same-sex couples deserved to have their rights and obligations recognized in the same way that married couples are.

July 24, 2014

'I don't think it's a past-tense kind of thing. It doesn't prevent your sexuality from existing. It doesn't really work like that'

Anna Paquin, currently starring in the seventh and final season of HBO's True Blood, says her marriage to co-star Stephen Moyer doesn't mean she's no longer bisexual.

Paquin was discussing her marriage this week on Larry King Now and was asked by the host: 'Are you a non-practicing bisexual?'

Paquin replied: 'Well, I am married to my husband and we are happily monogamously married.'

King: 'So you were bisexual?'

July 24, 2014

Fidel Castro's niece is well known for her support of the LGBTI community. She was believed to have been on the missing Air Algerie AH5017 flight

Gay rights champion Mariela Castro is alive after she was rumored to be aboard the missing Air Algerie plane.

Ouagadougou Airport claimed the advocate, the niece of former Cuban leader Fidel Castro, was among the 110 passengers on board.

In a statement, it said: ‘Among the passengers of VOL AH5017, there were two EU civil servants of French nationality based in Ouagadougou and Mariela Castro, the niece of Fidel Castro, the former Cuban leader.’

But on Telesur TV, a Latin American channel, Castro went on air to say she was alive and well.

July 17, 2014

‘Sexual orientation is not in itself a risk' - Gay rights activists are calling for all lifelong bans on gay and bisexual men donating blood to be lifted

Being a gay or bisexual man should not mean a lifelong ban from giving blood in many European countries, according to the Court of Justice.

Paulo Mengozzi, one of the Advocate Generals, gave his opinion that refusing blood donated by a man who has had sex with another man is discriminatory, unnecessary and should be stopped.

Geoffrey Léger, a Frenchman, went to a doctor in 2009 to give blood at the Établissement Français Du Sang (French Blood Agency).

Refused for being gay, Léger fought back against the decision.

July 11, 2014

Actress says of former Bikini Kill singer: 'I love a riot grrrl'

Keira Knightley had a quick answer when she was asked recently who she has a girl crush on.

'I just watched The Punk Singer, the documentary about Kathleen Hanna from Bikini Kill, so I actually have to go with her. She might be my top girl crush of all time, really. I love a riot grrrl.'